Many years ago I had the honor of knowing a gentleman by the name of Harold Kaska. Harold and I were very close friends, he was like a grandfather to me. He instilled me with knowledge and allowed me to fill his ears with my ranting and carrying on. We both were avid admirers of opera and classical music. Every week I would call Harold, who lived in Clayton California, and we would talk on the phone for hours about the latest opera productions in San Francisco, the latest recordings of our favorite composers’ works and overall just day to day stuff. On occasion I would be treated to a story from World War II, as Harold was a veteran of that war.
But most of all, I came to respect this man who called himself “El Perfect”. Harold, you see, was a genius. His IQ was way up there and the man was very very smart. He had a number of talents, most especially the talent to find oil. Before he retired, Harold was a micropaleontologist for a few of the big oil companies. He travelled all over the world and got to see some amazing things. But he was “El Perfect” because he was above everyone else. People were idiots to him, well most people. He embraced me into his circle of intellectual friends because I am also one of the gifted. I loved Harold very much, he was an incredible friend.
Harold passed away in his sleep on April 29, 2001. He was 75 years old. Today is the twelfth anniversary of Harold’s passing and though the years have diminished the pain of losing him, I miss him no less.