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My post about Jack.

Since the news broke about Jack McGeorge's passing yesterday, I've had people offering me condolences. I felt kind of funny accepting them... Jack and I were not especially close. We spoke to each other only at events, when our paths would cross. I still mourned his loss yesterday just like I would a close friend, though.

However, when I sat down to think about it, I realized that I mourn Jack because he was a good friend to me, even if he did not know it himself. And he influenced my life in uncountable ways.

I will never forget the first time I met him. After over a year of knowing lolitasir, and her telling me story after story about Jack, I still had not met him. It became almost comical - I would tease Lolita that I didn't think Jack really existed. That she was making him up as some sort of imaginary boyfriend. I edged her on for months about this, brushing off the resulting bruises whenever she would pound me for it.

Finally, I met him because she brought me along for a trip to DC. We entered his pretty house in a quiet Northern Virginia suburb, and there I laid eyes on Jack McGeorge for the first time. While I'm hazy about the year, I couldn't have been much older than 21 at this point. He and I shake hands... he smiles and says "Great to meet 'ya!" in that exuberant style Jack always had... and then he grabbed Lolita and dragged her into the other room.

She filled me in on the resulting conversation later. "Um, Lolita, what in the world are you doing with this kid?!"

Despite my age and suspicion that his gal was a chicken hawk, he welcomed me into his home with open arms. I met the entire family that weekend... Jack, their boy, their girl. I stayed in his son's room, and was given a tour of his amazing basement dungeon. And then soon enough, I kept returning. Almost once a month I'd accompany Lolita down to DC to stay at Jack's house. And I was greeted every time like family.

It was in Jack's dungeon that I discovered my love for handcuffs.

The ceiling of his basement had exposed wooden beams throughout. And hanging on these beams were hundreds of handcuffs. Over 300 pairs, if I remember the count correctly. All different sizes, shapes, makes and models, modern and ancient. He would tell me stories about them, like the pair he walked out of a Nigerian prison with. I was in awe. I remember once laying down on the floor for what seemed like an eternity gazing up at those cuffs... and right there in my impressionable young mind came the decision that I wanted to grow up and be like Jack.

I blamed him years later for the poverty resulting from my handcuff collecting. I think he got the joke.

Where Jack really impacted me was as a teacher and in my play. He was just so jovial about SM! So out, so proud... it was infectious. It was Jack and Lolita who inspired me to teach... they pushed me and showed me what it meant to be a good presenter. He supported me when I started to teach, encouraging me all the way, showing true excitement when we heard I was on a schedule. Jack taught me how to clearly communicate my topic, how to inject it with humor and life, and the most important thing of all - have a handout! In Jack's world, it just wasn't a class if there wasn't a handout.

He taught me that the mind was so much more important than the body. Anyone who has attended my Surving Corporal class has heard my story about Jack and his knife (ok, some of you have heard it dozens of times.) But allow me one more telling of it here.

Jack's knife class was and is the best I have ever seen. And I've seen it at least 9 times... maybe more. He used a knife that he had made for him by a blacksmith. I know this knife - I have felt it, I have played with it, and I've had it used on me. It is as blunt as a hammer. You practically couldn't cut butter with it - knock it on your neck, and all you're gonna get is a thump. Totally blunt knife. The other wonderful thing about Jack was that he was predictable. His knife play class followed the same path and structure every time. I knew that the first thing he would do every time, while talking about the psychology of the knife, the scariness of it, was that he would take his demo bottom, come up behind them, grab them by the neck, and then as hard as he could he would thrust his knife into the abdomen of the bottom, raking it hard and slowly across it as if he was gutting them.

He did this every time. And every single time I sat in on the class, he would grab me as the demo bottom for the first part. I knew what he was gonna do. I knew that the knife couldn't cut a fly. I knew all of this. I knew what was coming...

...and every single time, I would look down frantically afterwords expecting to see my intestines unraveling to the floor. Every single time.

Jack loved to fuck my brain with that. He would laugh and laugh and laugh.

These are just small bits of memory involving Jack. I feel lucky that I have many others, some that I will hold close to my heart.

For those of you who have had the chance to know him, spend time with him, sit in a class with him... treasure those memories. Because I truly feel that we will never see a man like Jack again. He was in a class all to himself.

I miss you already, Jack.


( 18 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 19th, 2009 08:45 pm (UTC)
Thank you for this.

May I link to this from my journal? The first two paragraphs express how I feel almost to the letter. I felt very, very strange when people offered me condolences, as his influence on me was mostly from classes and limited interaction.

Thanks again.
Aug. 19th, 2009 08:47 pm (UTC)
By all means. I know most of the SM nation is mourning him in much the same way.
Aug. 19th, 2009 08:51 pm (UTC)
Thank you, I know you're right, and I'm just so glad you could express it here.

I think I'll cry a little more now, but it's not a bad thing.
Aug. 19th, 2009 08:57 pm (UTC)
What a wonderful tribute! I did not know Jack, but now I feel like I do. And you could tell me that knife story over and over again and I would never get tired of it. Thanks so much for this.
Aug. 19th, 2009 09:08 pm (UTC)
You would have adored him, Barbara.
Aug. 19th, 2009 09:04 pm (UTC)
I regret that I did not get to meet him.
Aug. 19th, 2009 09:09 pm (UTC)
Me too. The man could have read aloud a phone book, and the crowd would have been riveted. Just from a geeked out informational point alone, you would have loved him.
Aug. 19th, 2009 09:33 pm (UTC)
a wonderful tribute for a great man.
Aug. 19th, 2009 09:37 pm (UTC)
Thank you for this great tribute. I remember my first of those knife workshops....and I remember the feeling as my own guts hit the floor.

Aug. 19th, 2009 11:37 pm (UTC)
That was lovely, thanks.
Aug. 20th, 2009 12:08 am (UTC)
Love you!
Aug. 20th, 2009 01:30 am (UTC)
Thank you for sharing. I have similar memories that I'll share soon.

I remember you sharing the story about the handcuffs hanging from the ceiling just last month.

He truly was in a class all to himself.

Edited at 2009-08-20 01:31 am (UTC)
Aug. 20th, 2009 01:20 pm (UTC)
thank you for sharing this. This is probably the nicest response i've seen regarding his death.
Aug. 20th, 2009 05:57 pm (UTC)
your Mr McG Post
Thanks for sharing that. The first time I met him was at Dungeon, and was his demo for the knife class and remember sitting down and STILL checking my tummy for slashes. I had forgotten that until you posted, thanks.
Aug. 20th, 2009 10:26 pm (UTC)
That was lovely, and really wonderful to read. Thanks for writing it.
Aug. 21st, 2009 02:24 pm (UTC)
I too have never liked people expressing their condolences at the passing of another. You knew a great man, and we are all saddened by his passing. Bit you were lucky enough to have known him like few others had. Congratulations on having been able to form memories of a man that from here on out, people will only know by reading about him.

Paul (aka. DaSade)
Aug. 23rd, 2009 09:04 am (UTC)
What an amazing man
I'm still surprised by how sad I was to hear of Jack's passing. I only met him a handful of times, spread over a dozen+ years.

And yet - the power and grace of the man left such an impression.

Thank you for your memories and your eloquence here, Boymeat. We've all lost something important.

- Max
Dec. 22nd, 2010 02:57 am (UTC)
Jack's basement
The story about the handcuffs on the ceiling is intriguing. What happened to all of them. I would love to hear what else went on in that basement and throughout the house.
( 18 comments — Leave a comment )