Thicker Than Blood, Stronger Than Time

It hit the five of us as we drove through the mountain passes between Loveland and Estes Park, Colorado: we’ve known one another fourteen or fifteen years, depending who logged in to the old HorrorNet chat when.

It occurred to me tonight that we’ve known one another over a third of our lives, even for the oldest of us.

KRAP 1

The original “KRAP” photo: John, Geoff, Brian, me, Mikey
World Horror Convention, Seattle, 2001

I’m horrible at keeping in touch with people. My family moved around like gypsies while I grew up, and I haven’t managed to do a whole lot better as an adult. The past seven years are the longest I’ve spent any place, any time. There are friends from farther back whom I’ve known longer, but there are very few who I’ve kept in touch with as consistently as these guys.

Part of the Cabal. The Four/Five Horsemen. The Musketeers. Several monikers (and epithets) have been thrown our way over the years. They all work, and they all tend to stick. I’ve always felt brotherhood was as good a description as any.

It’s been fourteen or fifteen years, but in many ways it feels like longer. That bit in my latest Indie Pulp column about spilling and shedding blood together? That was with these guys. We’ve seen births and deaths in our circle. We’ve been to marriages and through divorces. There have been fights and reconciliations. All through it, we celebrate with or lean on one another as appropriate.

KRAP 2 Color

KRAP Revisited, 11 years later
The Stanley Hotel, Estes Park, 2012

We gathered this time to visit our friend and mentor, Tom Piccirilli. All things considered, Tom’s doing well and he and Michelle are staying positive and are determined to fight. It was good to see them and to help out.

I think, too, we got a glimpse of our own mortality.

At least, I did. I may be the youngest of the group, but I can see age sneaking up on us. Various ailments were discussed, as were the health scares some have already faced. What will KRAP Re-Revisited look like in another 11 years? It’s hard to say.

But in the meantime, gentlemen, it’s damn good to know we can count on one another.

Boom de yada.

About Mike Oliveri

Mike Oliveri is a writer, martial artist, cigar aficionado, motorcyclist, and family man, but not necessarily in that order. He is currently hard at work on the werewolf noir series The Pack for Evileye Books.

One comment

  1. Mikey says:

    Huzzah huzzah! Or should I say…boom de yada boom de yada…

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