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Readers Blog: Dobie Maxwell's 'Dented Can' Diary

Friends Without Ends

Sunday May 22nd, 2011 - Fox Lake, IL

   One thing I’ve been super blessed with in life is a stellar lineup of friends. I can’t be any more grateful for all of them, and I never want to take advantage of their kindness. I know how I try to be kind to people whenever I can, but sometimes there are those that abuse it.

   I don’t want to be one of those people. Lately, my friends have been coming through for me when I really need it, and I appreciate it. I feel like I owe them, but they don’t expect a score to be kept. They do it because it’s in them, just like it’s in me. It’s how it should be.

   My friend Richard Caan has really helped me unload my sports card collection. I bought it at THE worst time, and it was a mistake. I thought I could spin it and turn a buck, but it turned out to be a total waste of time and money. He sells cards for a living, and has taken it upon himself to go out of his way to package the bulk of my stuff and get a return on it.

   He totally didn’t have to do that, and he’s put time and energy into it that’s taken focus away from his own business. He’s managed to get back the most return possible in these times, and hasn’t complained once. Friends like that are special, and I won’t forget this.

   Another friend who has gone out of his way to show kindness to me lately is Bert Haas from Zanies. Bert has always been good to me, but lately he’s been extra kind in booking me to work at all the Zanies in the Chicago area. I’m one of their boys, and I never take it for granted. I’ve been loyal to them, but they’ve been loyal to me in return for 20 years.

   I went over to Bert’s house today to talk about the continuation of comedy classes at the Chicago location. Zanies has made me their exclusive comedy teacher for many years and they didn’t have to do that either. Now that the owner Rick is gone, Bert and I need to get on the same page to see if classes are even feasible, and that’s what we discussed today.

   The good part about Bert being a friend is that I didn’t have to keep selling him on what I’m trying to do. He gets the concept, and wants it to work just like I do. It’s a lot easier to move forward that way than if I’d have to keep trying to convince him of the class merits.

   We mapped out a plan for the fall, and will do our best to execute it. Maybe it will work and maybe it won’t, but at least I have a chance to succeed and backing from management who believes in what I‘m doing. In this day and age, that’s more than most get. I’ll take it, and not complain. I have a chance to make something happen, what more could I ask for?

   Bert and his wife Sally have always treated me like family, and I’ll always owe them for that. They’ve had me for Christmases and Thanksgivings and all kinds of other times they didn’t have to invite me. I love their kids too, and have watched all three grow from birth.

   Jerry Agar and his family are another example of someone who’s taken me in and made me part of the mix. I’ve watched his kids grow up too, and they’re all fantastic. No matter what things I didn’t get in life, good friends isn’t one of them. They’re all special to me.

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