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During the summer that I was 18, I was working with the Teamsters, mostly at McCormick Place. But occasionally I loaded and unloaded trucks at Ravinia Festival, too.
This was the case when the Pat Metheny Group came to town that year. It was hot and muggy and I was exhausted and parched from hauling and loading gear (without any mechanical aid). But, during break time, I got a chance to meet the band. I had a chance to talk to Pat and Lyle. When I shook Lyle's hand, I remember his fingers wrapping around mine, almost cartoonishly long.
Incredibly nice and appreciative of the work I was doing on that hot, sweaty night, he grabbed this 18-year-old kid a Corona out of the band's own stash, cracked it open, and handed it to me, thanking me for busting my ass.
It was a moment. I remember it fondly and always will.
Thanks for the music, Lyle. And thanks for the tastiest, most-refreshing beer I have ever had.
Rest in peace.


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