….Comments have been coming in to the studio about the recent blog about the passing of Lou-Pop. When you’ve lived for 93 years a lot of people are left with memories. Lou-Pop was an artist and a landscaper. One of the employee’s of Louie’s suburban landscaping business learned about his recent passing. In his own word’s Don Brunetti, now a singer songwriter from Nashville, Tennessee share’s intimate stories about the times he spent with Pop.
On September 19, twenty years ago, my mother died. The next day, on September 20, Irving Berlin, the great songwriter passed. Now Louie has left us on September 21. I’m guessing, if there really is a place called Heaven, the three of them are maybe listening to Trotter and Utah Phillips picking and singing.
Some people pass and are easily forgotten, while other people leave a “hole in the world” when they pass. Louie filled a lot of holes in my life at a time when I needed it most. He had the wisdom of the street, a kind of “bottom up” view of the world. In 1973, when the gas prices went up to the he horrendous price of 50 cents a gallon, I told Louie we were about to have a depression. “Youse hippies don’t know anything,” was his reply, “In a depression, the money doesn’t go away, it just goes someplace else.”
He sure knew how to follow the money. The following summer, we had our best year yet. Another time, he came back from lunch at the “Fox and Hounds” and started yelling at me from a crack in the window of his air conditioned car. No particular reason, he was not what you might call, “a hippie whisperer”. Finally he said, “Why didn’t you do that?”. I yelled back, “Louie, I was going to do that last”. “Don’t do anything last!”
You couldn’t “one up” him either. Louie would always have the last word. I think my favorite story was the time when Trotter and I were walking up the alley one morning. We were both hung over, at least a half hour late and holding each other up. When we got there, Louie was yelling at Louis and Mark for being late. Marko should have kept his mouth shut, and Louie would have turned his wrath on us, but Mark said, “What about those guys, they’re later than us”. Louie turned around with his big shit-eating grin and said, “Youse guys are Hippies, youse can be late!”
As long as I’m around Louie Pop will live on in these stories. And nobody will believe them. About 30 years ago, I moved down to Corpus Christi because I needed a job and Trotter put me on his landscaping crew. I was working with a guy named William, who had his PHD in chemistry, but who preferred to work outside. William and I were riding around one day and I said, “I wonder what Lou-Pop would think about all this?” William pulled the truck over and said, “There’s no such person as Lou-Pop. That’s a story Trotter made up. Nobody could be like that.” “Sorry William, there is such a person and Trotter’s stories are only scratching the surface.”
When my son turned 30, he was starting to get upset about getting old. I used a “Louie-ism” when I told my son, “Don’t worry, the older you get, the more unique you become.” Lou-Pop was, if nothing else, was the most unique person I ever met, and I’ve met a lot of people. I’m sad for losing probably the best friend I ever had.