Friday, July 15, 2005


Petr called to tell me. He told me in Czech so I tried to convince myself that I must have understood wrong. Jarda is dead. He threw himself under a train in Děčín. Martin (Jarda's little brother) said that he had had a fight with his wife. What the fuck?!! They had been married for all of four days. Petr and I wanted to find some confirmation. Martin used to be a heroin addict and we could never really be sure with him.

Jesus. I was shocked and I cried. My heart hurt for his new wife and his parents. Now I am a mixture of angry and numb, definitely still in shock. I called Monkey, my mom, Jono and AG. I sent an e-mail to people overseas who had known Jarda, who I knew would never hear if I didn’t tell them.

Finally I checked an old e-mail address that I no longer use for personal correspondence. There it was: a message from Jarda’s responsible big brother dated yesterday with the news. Now we had to believe it.

We already had a plan for this weekend: Petr, Jeanie Weenie and I (and Lukáš, the giant back-breaking baby) are going up to Česká Lípa to see Arnošt and Tomáš tomorrow. Petr, Arn and Tom were three of Jarda’s best friends at university. None of us really still talked to Jarda, but the four of us have remained close with each other. I just talked to Arn on the phone, and we agreed that it’s great that we will all be together tomorrow. We can get drunk and talk about what a jerk Jarda was.

Jarda had threatened suicide at least a couple of times before. One night right after I had left him just over six years ago, he called me from Nuselský most, the "suicide bridge", to tell me he was going to jump off. I think I wanted to tell him to go ahead, but I didn’t. Still, I never thought he would really do it.

Jarda had problems with drugs, on and off. I know the girl he just married did too. I don’t know if that had anything to do with his suicide; I guess it must have in one way or another.

Jarda was actually a good person. He was intelligent, funny and kind. He was a bit aimless and never really found his place in the world, which was obviously a big problem for him. I can’t say that I will miss him because I haven’t even seen him for a year or 2, but still, I didn’t want him to be dead.

Jarda obviously did not want to be here anymore and I have to accept that. Taking pills is a cry for help; throwing yourself under a train is a certain way out. I can already feel the shock and anger starting to turn to grief.


Anonymous said...

sweetie...when you have some beer with the boys in Ceska Lipa (I don't know where the Czech accents on my keyboard are)...tell them I say hello and have a few pints for is shocking news but I am glad you are meeting up Arnost and Tomas...I am sorry I can't be there to get drunk with you...

Monkey's Max said...

Thanks, TM. It was awesome. And thanks for the phone call; it meant a lot.

See you soon in Dublin! xxoo

Anonymous said...

I will keep close Jarda'a infectious smile and twinkle in the eye.

Monkey's Max said...

Thanks, Anon. I hope that people will remember Jarda as he was when he was happy.