Today, JCI Scholar Vincent Greco and I attended the memorial service for Doug Arey. Here are some things that come into my mind when I think about Doug:
- His loud, irrepressible, unmistakable laugh.
- His inability to call me anything but “Professor Brottman,” even when all the other men call me by my first name, even when I asked him many times to call me Mikita, though when I told him it made me feel really uncomfortable to be called “Professor Brottman.” But he was too old fashioned. He just couldn’t do it.
- The way he was both assertive and shy at the same time.
- His lumbering gait,
- The fact that he always kept extra pens in his front pocket in case anybody needed one.
- How readily he would begin recounting some account of social, legal, or personal history, and how many times I would have to interrupt and rein him in.
- How he would always respond with a mumble of apology.
- How much he loved the song “Beasts of England” (sung to the tune of “My Darling Clementine”) from Animal Farm. In fact he liked it so much, he told me, that he used to sing it aloud to himself when he was cleaning his cell.
- The way he could look dignified even when his glasses were held on with a piece of string.