Monday, June 07, 2010

Claudia Asbury
When I married her sister Claudia was nineteen years old. You're supposed to love your wife's kid sister, but I found it easy to fall in love with Loddie. In the first place she was only three years younger than me and a red headed version of my  hot dancer wife.  I doubt I will ever have another female relationship quite like hers.

Even as a young woman I was drawn to the artist that was Loddie. We were both the "middle child" of our families. I felt close enough and safe enough to share my ideas with her. I always valued her opinions of my art or others. She could be stubborn about a point, but it never came from a place of "mean-spiritedness". 

We laughed mostly. Nothing was too serious to laugh at.  I loved to make Loddie laugh. But Sandi will tell you that I tend to never know when to stop going for the laugh.  One evening when Loddie had enough of my rhetoric she taped my mouth shut during the television broadcast of the Kennedy Center Honors.

Loddie came to stay with us at our Studio City apartment when we first moved to Los Angeles.  Sandi was on a job out of town for a couple of days and Claudia was  working on a job. in town. I remember I was "between" jobs working mostly at the HORN.  Loddie and I were seriously into Backgammon at the time. It was the popular California pool side pastime of the idle actor.   We began to seriously play over the weekend Sandi was gone and played continuously for 18 hours with out stopping.   There were only breaks for quick runs to the convenience store for more Dr Pepper.  We had a lot of Dr Pepper together that evening and many others.  I used to be able to match Loddie can for can of DP. I think we ended up even on the the games as well.

There are almost 40 years of stories with Loddie playing the lead role. Like how Loddie got that nickname from Brandon. The snow castle with room for three we built at Lake Tahoe. Blowing off a ski run so we could stay in the lodge and talk. The road trip to watch Brandon's college graduation.

There should have been decades more memories and stories but, last Sunday Claudia Asbury the beautiful sister of my beautiful wife stepped away from her body and moved on.  

Trying to comprehend Loddies absence makes me remember what I will be missing for the rest of my life.  Why did she leave us so soon? There was much more laughter to share. This becomes too sad to think about so I just start remembering moments... again.. like in that picture above...Loddie and me together, laughing and clowning around during an opening night party....


Roomie said...

This is a wonderful tribute to your dear friend and sister in law...cherish those memories forever......we love you all....and wish we were there to give you and Sandi a big hug....we're sending it here....
Carry on,

Philip Grecian said...

My deepest sympathies, Jay, to you and Sandi and Joyce and the family. Having read the facebook piece, I can see that Claudia was an amazing human being.

Amanda By Night said...

I'm am terribly sorry to read of your loss. This was a beautiful tribute. I wish I had known her, she sounds amazing. I'm so glad you have all of those memories. Hold them close.