Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Norm was the first person to welcome me when I moved to my new house. He issued a standing invitation for a glass of wine at chez Schureman, and though a few years passed, there seemed no rush. We ran into each other all the time -- neighborhood parties, on walks, when his Labrador charged loose down the street, or mine did.
Norm was a well-proportioned, 6-foot tall gentle man with a level gaze and a wry grin -- the kind of grin that implies he knows or he knows you know a pretty good joke. Usually I’d see him in the company of his wife and kids. He built the most beautiful treehouse in their backyard. I saw the family together last month; his little boy held a new Boston Terrier puppy in his arms. “Is that cute puppy yours?” I asked the son. “Yes,” he said happily, and leaned against his father’s leg, “He’s mine.”
Norm died this weekend. He was shot and fatally wounded while at a holiday gathering.
I've never really believed in Karma; reciprocity seems more like mathematics than a philosophy. Do the honest thing or the right thing just because you want to or have to; even if Karma does exist, it might be otherwise occupied. Sometimes what goes around just keeps on going. Witness how often the good die young or at least before their time.
Some think the very young feel more deeply because adults develop callouses along the road. I don't believe that's true. It’s just, once you’re grown, you either learn to bob and weave or else end up punch drunk -- standing on street corners and in subways, making loud attempts to dissect the absolute random series of events that make up life.
(Norman Schureman taught illustration and product design at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. He leaves behind a wife, children, dogs, students, and a very sad neighborhood.)
This just in: Art Center College of Design will host a memorial service for alumnus and faculty member Norm Schureman on Sunday, March 28, 2010 at 10:00 a.m. The service is open to friends, family, members of the Art Center community and the general public. Full details can be found at comment #39.