Jamie Hart

One of My Dead Friends
by Stephen Arod Shirreffs

Jamie was my first boyfriend in Vancouver. We met in a new Classic Bookstore being established in 1974 in a mall in Richmond, B.C., a monstrous suburb that provided us with our first opportunity for sarcasm. Jamie's cousin was the manager, and I the new employee. She hired Jamie to help unbox stuff. After work that first day, as we drove back to the safer confines of Vancouver in a car full of new and earnest employees, Jamie and I secretly established our mutual homosexuality. He said, "ever go to the discos in Toronto?" I said, "Yeah, the Manatee." That was enough; he knew it was a gay disco. Maurice called Jamie the "Fan Lady"; I really don't know why. Jamie was restless throughout his life, investigating Indonesia a decade before I did. He eventually took work as a freelance costume designer in Toronto, where I last saw him in 1991. He had a mad home near the SkyDome filled with artifacts and intallations; he also had a possessive Bedlington Terrier which took to me ... but then I have a way with even the prissiest of dogs. Jamie died in 1993, but I didn't find out until 1996.

The photo above was taken in my first, studio apartment in the Banffshire in Vancouver's West End, probably in 1977. It was after our brief fling, and well into our longer term association. Jamie had a penetrating laugh ... I can hear it as I look at him mugging for my camera.

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Copyright (c) 2007 by Stephen Arod Shirreffs, all rights reserved.
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| Created: May 21, 1996 | Updated: May 17, 2007 |