Monday, December 7, 2015
Rest In Peace Tim Butcher
Tim Butcher passed away this past weekend.
For a lot of you that name might not mean anything. However I promise you that all of you either knew Tim or know someone hurting from his passing. Tim was a big part of the Los Angeles hardcore punk scene for the last decade. To hold it down that long in a city as big as LA tells you how much he loved being a part of this. He loved playing music and was constantly finding a project to be involved in. He was in Pressvre, Minus, and Hell In The Cell to name a few. He played with Trash Talk a few times. Tim's love for music was unrivaled. More importantly, regardless what stage he was on or what the band was, he made it a point to always have fun. It was this philosophy that ultimately defined Tim. He was just positive energy.
On a personal level, the loss of Tim Butcher is a particularly difficult one. I started talking to Tim about eight years ago from the old Southern California message board where we struck a rapport over our shared love of hockey (since our favorite teams were rivals, we had plenty to discuss). From this we ended up becoming friends. It wasn't until I lived in Los Angeles last year that I really got to spend a lot of time with Tim. We would talk about our creative ideas (we were both working on trying to sell TV shows we developed), music, pro wrestling, and hockey (unsurprisingly the debates hadn't changed). I was really lucky to get to spend a lot of time with Tim then because I got to know one of the realest human beings I've ever met. He was the most straightforward and earnest person. He didn't pull punches and he didn't sugarcoat things. If you said something stupid (as I often would), he would tell you in a second. If you did something that was cool, he would tell you so. Isn't that what every friend should aspire to do? Call you on your mistakes and encourage you when you do well? For this reason, among many others, Tim knew what the word "friend" meant.
I have only been back to Los Angeles for one night since I left last year. In January, I was passing through and got to roll with Tim and a few of our friends to an Ajax show in Pomona. I was at a weird point in my own life. I just spent three months in Dallas sorting myself out and had taken a job to start in Connecticut in less than a week. Seeing all of them that night was weird for me because when I left LA almost half a year earlier I was in a dark place. Talking to Tim helped to snap me out a lot of the daze I had been in. One thing he used to do when he talked to me was he would outright ignore the stuff he thought was irrelevant or pointless and immediately ask about something worth discussing. I would talk about some column I wrote and he'd ask about the TV show's status. He had an attention for success. He knew what was good and how to further it while avoiding the bad because it wasn't worth the time. Spending time with him that night put things a lot of things into perspective. As he called it a night, he just told me to keep doing what I was doing. I needed that hang out with Tim that night. I'm thankful that I was able to go to LA for one night only and spend it with him. His perspective on everything is something few people have and now we no longer have it anymore and the world is poorer for it.
A lot of you probably don't watch professional wrestling and that's okay, so indulge me for one moment. Owen Hart died in 1999 as a result of a tragic accident. The next night on Monday Night Raw they ran a tribute for him. To this day I distinctly remember a lot of what the wrestlers said about Owen in their testimonials. "Consummate friend", "the best sense of humor", and "lived for his passions". I thought about all of the things people said about Owen and I realized "that's Tim". The last quote I think about is from Debra. "I still can't believe that you're gone... I keep looking for you." Los Angeles will never be the same without you in it, Tim. Whether we realize we're doing it or not, we're always going to look for you at shows and parties. The truth of it is because by looking for you, if even only for one second, we have an opportunity to remember you and wish you were here with us.
I love you, Tim.
I'll see you on the other side.