R.I.P., Charles Cala
I wasn't on Facebook much last week, and so I missed various people posting about the fact that our friend Charles (a.k.a. Rev. Buck Nakid) had died, until Kam mentioned it this evening.
I hadn't seen or heard from or about him in probably at least ten years. But I'm very sorry to hear about his death.
He was hit by a truck while bicycling in Austin, Texas, where I gather he'd been living for a while.
In case anyone reading this is interested and doesn't already know, there'll be a convocation/wake in his memory this coming Friday evening, at Fibber McGee's in Sunnyvale. I'm not sure whether I'll be going.
Various people who knew Charles have posted some comments on a Facebook post from Jeff Saunders (mostly from people who knew Charles from the Spangenberg Auditorium stage tech days). Not sure whether people who aren't on Jeff's friends list will be able to see that.
The people who ran the fireworks show at Shoreline this past weekend apparently included an 8" shell in the finale in memory of Charles. Seems like a very fitting tribute.
I think my iconic memory of Charles was that Beltane on the beach in 1992, when Charles and I carried a wooden shipping pallet down to the beach for a bonfire. We had a little moment of theatre-tech bonding there, in the course of acknowledging that each of us could carry one end of something while walking backward.
He also figured prominently in the La Tierra roleplaying campaign that Ananda ran in 1993 or so. Charles played a radical semi-terrorist, who had grown up with our group and was still part of the group, but kept getting us in trouble by blowing stuff up. His character, I admit, made some things about the game difficult, and caused some tension; still, I think he also added some interesting complications.
Back in real life, I think it was around the time of his father's sudden and pretty awful death that Charles drifted away from my social crowd, and I'm sorry to say that I didn't make an effort to stay in touch. But when I occasionally thought of him, I was always glad to think that he was still out there, still grinning and talking casually and openly about sex and explosives and other stuff not so often discussed in polite company.
It feels weird to say that I'll miss him, given how long it's been since I had any contact with him. But I'm sad to know he's gone.