I hope it’s okay I call you that. Mr. Cooper felt a bit formal.
So we finally meet. I’m the girl sitting one seat in front of you at the Dave Chappelle show.
I, of course, didn’t notice you. I’m one of those people that give all of my attention to the speaker. I don’t turn around. I do one thing at a time. Research says there is no such thing as multi-tasking, but research obviously hasn’t studied my husband, because, of course, he saw you.
And he told me.
I am not a fan of yours. That would not be the right word to describe it. I just think you are authentic and I want you to know that. I think you are a good person and I look up and admire people like you.
Nope. Admire is not the right word either. The admirer is a passive action. It infers watching. I’m an active follower. I’m actively walking, at least I try. I try to walk a path like you, an authentic one in service of others.
I know you came from privilege and could have been anything in the world but choose a harder path. A path for truth. A path to communicate your truth. And I’m not saying that I agree with everything you say, but I am saying I think you believe in what you are saying. And I think you say it for others. To help others.
Doesn’t get more authentic than that.
And you have superman capabilities. You are everywhere! Seriously! Everywhere. I always joke with my husband when I hear bad news (natural disaster, terrorist attack), you know Anderson is there. Maybe you are more spiderman and have that “spidey sense” as you seem to be everywhere.
You go to people. You go to their time. You walk through their demolished villages, you help them get a call out to a loved one to tell them that they are alive.
You bear witness. You see the unseen.
I have too.
I read your letter to your mom. My favorite part was that you share the same laugh. I know it is high pitched and comes in short blasts. I’ve heard it on TV myself.
After Steve pointed out your presence, I couldn’t really listen to anything else. I was waiting for that laugh. I can imagine that life for you can be harder than for others. When you live your life in service of others, you often come last.
I wonder if you have to second guess what you laugh at because you represent so many. You are their voice and for the rest of us our ears. You filter what we see and what we hear. That is a lot of responsibility, but I know you take it seriously. You mean no harm. You mean good.
I couldn’t enjoy the show until I heard you laugh. You know really laugh. The high pitched one like your mom.
It took a bit, but then it happened and it made me happy. It just made the show better.
I tried to connect with you. I’m sorry if I made you uncomfortable. I’m sorry if I interrupted your private time, but that made me sad. Sad that we couldn’t connect.
Not that I was expecting to be best friends, but I felt that when I gave you compliments you didn’t really hear them.
It felt like you can only give, but not receive the love in return. That made me sad.
I told you I was sorry for your recent loss. Maybe that made you sad, but that was not my intention. I was just really sorry. I really was so sorry.
Anyways. I’ve been thinking of you all day today. Thinking about Dave too. How both of you LIVE OUT LOUD. It looks different, but isn’t it the same? Dave just says whatever he is thinking and when you think about it, the thoughts in our heads are funny. He makes us laugh.
But what really struck me in the show is how incredibly insecure we all are. How often Dave had to mention the New York Times Review. How one person with a pen can ruin an entire tour, can ruin an entire truth, all those people laughing. One person’s words can knockdown someone as talented as Dave. How it can erase all of the laughs, even yours, the high pitched one.
So I just wanted to reach out again and say, I really admire you. I really admire that you put your life out there to entertain/inform others at the cost of having your own. At the cost of laughing when you want or getting a review, getting blasted, being cut down (and even by the President in your case!). And I hope you really hear it. You deserve it.
Thank you for your service,