Sunday, July 21, 2013
This week I want to talk about Hudson.
From the moment I wrote about Officer Borsch I knew exactly who had inspired the character. But Hudson? I didn't really know anybody like him. He was more the cool old guy that I wish I knew.
What's funny is, it turns out I did know him. Or someone very much like him. I just didn't make the connection until this week.
Hudson first appeared on the page in 1994. Eighteen books and nearly twenty years later, Hudson has aged only one year. So maybe I didn't recognize the Hudson in my life because he wasn't an old guy yet. Maybe it took him passing Hudson in age for me to see what a cool guy he really was.
I'm talking about my father-in-law. A man who loved books and knew how to apply knowledge. A man with an enviable combination of high intelligence and artistic ingenuity.
I use the past tense because this week we lost our Hudson, the remarkable Ed Parsons. I feel a little like I imagine Sammy would if Hudson Graham were to pass away. Like our polestar is gone.
I learned so much from Ed, not about textbook things, but about life and how to treat other people. He was inspiring in so many ways, but there was never any fanfare to it. He worked hard, never complained, and was generous in ways you don't truly understand until it dawns on you that time is everything.
He was also a little secretive (or, as Hudson would say, private), and had a great sense of humor.
And he loved cool old cars.
What took me so long to see this?
I've often said that when I grow up I want to be Hudson. (Or, you know, the female equivalent of Hudson.) I have a ways to go, yet, but it sure helps to have had an example of how it's done.