Cancer steals some more laughter.

From left to right: Me, David Hernandez, Cinda Vivanco & Barry Weinberger at Punch 59, May 1999.

From left to right: Me, David Hernandez, Cinda Vivanco & Barry Weinberger at Punch 59, May 1999.

Cancer has stolen another person away.

This time it’s David Hernandez, a buddy of mine from Florida with whom I performed back in my PUNCH 59 sketch comedy days in the late 90s. Cancer took him last night. He was the Bill to my Bob and “we was Siamese twins, joined together at the upper lip, we shared a brain stem. When we was separated, I got the upper part of the brain and he, well, he knows how to breathe.” Gods, he was funny, especially when he would argue back, “No, YOU smell like a fish.”

Those were good times. The sketch comedy was a creative outlet, and in addition to writing a few bits, I got to play in the troupe a few times. David was always one of the best to work with, and when there were new characters that needed to be brought to life, David found the funniest way possible to give them breath. He got the laughs, man.

In the end, cancer took that breath. He’d been fighting it for a while, and from time to time he’d post updates on his progress. In the last few weeks it seemed he was getting somewhere. He talked about going home, and from his positive tone I just assumed that meant he was getting better.

Over the years since I’d moved to L.A., he’d private message me occasionally, reminiscing about the fun we’d had playing in sketches together. I would always remind him his great comedic timing made everything work, and it was always a joy to be on stage with him and ride the laughter as naturally and easily as could be. And more than once, he was the guy who made me crack up in the middle of the sketch.

I’ll see you in another life, Batman.

And screw you, cancer.

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