A friend remembers: Mason Caldwell

By  Clem DeLadder

eucher hand
Mason “F” Caldwell is remembered as a euchre- loving fan of Fleetwood Mac by his friend, Clem DeLadder. (Beacon photo illustration.)

“These are the tithes that try men’s bankrolls.” Some guy said something like that once. And if Mason, F, was here right now he’d recite the entire thing and know the guy who said it. He had a memory like a steel ball bearing and nothing ever rolled better than he did.

When I got the news that the old F-man died I didn’t believe it at first. He pulled a fake death stunt once but nobody bought it because he texted it to everybody. He said “F is dead. He died in a freak card shuffling accident. You guys will have to buy your own beer tonight. He said he’s sorry and will get it next time.”

It’s true F wasn’t very smart. That’s why we called him F. But he could remember everything. He had a photogenic memory. He just never applicated himself. At least that’s what all our teachers said.

I met F in kindergarten. His house was across the street from the school and sometimes on school nights I’d stay over and it was so cool because we would always get to the school the next day way before anybody else. Even the janitors and guys who mowed the grass. F said he should have that job because he would never be late for work. And as far as I know he wasn’t. Once he got the job, that is.

But when he lost it, the job, he kind of lost it. We lost touch in the last days of his life. I don’t know what happened. I guess I never will, at least until the autopsy because he died alone and stuff and his dogs kind of, well, never mind.

Anyway, here’s to F. “The dream of a lifetime/It’s something something something/Everything is alright/And now it’s gone.” May both bowers land in your hand. You’re goin’ alone, dude.



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