James Cullen


i’m sending you and your family my love.

to have had chris, as a mirror, for a spell, in my life – incredibly blessed and truly grateful. his reflection was one of calmness, maturity, humility, and compassionate gentleness – a wonderfully curious man with an instinctual capability of understanding, and improving, the experiences of others.
chris texted me hours before he was to play on jimmy fallon. i was at work in vancouver. he mentioned where he was and said that he was incredibly nervous. my first reaction was, ‘awww, reims’. then, i thought better. i replied, advising: ‘just make sure to take a poop before the biiigggg shhhowww, you’ll look skinnier!’ i’m not sure if he did or not. i would assume that he probably did. sadly, i couldn’t tell from the video.
i think that was my last interaction with him – other than a few weeks previous – on thanksgiving, when rena and him showed up at my place in vancouver. i wasn’t sure what to play for chris so i made him listen to a slop mash-up of krzysztof penderecki and iannis xenakis. i had a feeling he’d appreciate how the overlapping songs would escalate in intensity and, well… not let-up, ever. so, we sat, in a room, with hardwood flooring, in a house that smells like cumin, looking at each other, giggling hysterically at the intensity of it all while rena looked on, wrapped in intrigue.
afterwards, i took chris and rena to a store on main street. he bought an orange plaid shirt. somehow, it vaguely, and strangely, reminded me of a robert starratt ‘experience’ (or an o’henry chocolate bar, i’m not too sure). i smiled deeply when i saw the shirt on reimer a few weeks later.
stories aside, nikki, it was an honour to have had supported chris – in his creative pursuits, as a friend, and as a brother.
he was such a gem and i will value my memories of him greatly.

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