posted on December 7, 2006 at 8:05 pm

dear subscriber
please exuse the t. being from attending blogge
the 6 n 7 th of dec.
when he woke up on the 6th he had a high temp
and all his adjectives were slightly flushed.
he seemed off his puns and couldnt not even be tempted
with a small rant.
i made the painful decision not to send him along
and then yesterday
when i heard him split an infinitive i rushed him to
the grammarians who after an examination
said he was suffering verb fatigue
and his conjugations were a liitle swollen.
the doctors checked his diction
and advised a small lay-off
for a few days.
i hope the t. being can catch up all his work
and passes all his paypal exams
yours faithfully
mother of all t. beings

im sorry
yes i was away
2 hard late nights
and then
nks uncle gary passed away
aged only 56 years
uncle gary was a true character
a kind of modern wc fields
he paid for our honeymoon down at rehoboth beach
and when we checked into our room
uncle gary had provided champagne n chocolate strawberries too
he had polio when he was just a kid
and spent a long time in hospital on his own
then when he got out he had to wear a painful n awkward body-brace
he always limped n shuffled along and the polio was slowly coming back
making his life miserable
even getting in n out of bed became a major hassle
uncle gary was nks dads elder brother
and the 1st time i went to delaware to meet her
uncle gary turned up to check me out
there was a knocking at the door the 1st morning i arrived
and theres this larger-than-life character
standing there with a cigar n a pink suit
(uncle g was NOT gay but he wore strange flamboyant clothes)
he beckoned to me
and i hopped in his corvette and he drove me around
givin’ me the 3rd degree
he was a lawyer
and he asked me lotsa questions
but never really waited to hear the answer
just leapt on to the next topic
all the time keeping up a hilarious schpiel
he took us out to a restaurant
which proved to be a comedy routine
uncle g was “fond of a drink”
and he ranted n raved about larry fortensky
(i think he wished he was married to liz taylor himself)
and he kept warning natalie about “english school boys”
implying that i might be secretely gay
he was very un-p.c. about almost every subject
summoning the chef out to ask him about my veggie lasagna
and carrying on in a loud tasteless but completely hysterical fashion
uncle gary instantly became my fave
and although he teased me mercilessly
and never seemed to listen to my mumbled protests
i thought he was the bees knees
his intake of vodka was prodigious and he ate very little food
he usually had a great big pair of sunglasses on
and he was always in a hurry
he could never just sit down n relax
he liked young women with lotsa make-up
and he squired an endless stream of em
attracted by his bottomless wallet n his extreme largesse
he let us stay in his lovely holiday house for a while
and kept on inviting me to drive his ‘vette
but then he never let me
he was outrageously sentimental n then
just as quickly he’d change his mind
and say something caustic
eg a loada rellies saying how clever
the doodles are cos they could, say, walk a little
oh theyre so clever
oh look at em walk
and uncle gary’d mumble
oh yeah..theyre fuckin’ geniuses
which i thought was kinda refreshing
the twillies came over n met him
they were kinda fascinated by him
he exploded into crocodile tears at our wedding
and then turned up at our litttle breakfast
pissed as a newt
paying for everything
and telling tales about himself
and legendary bar room brawls he’d been in
eventually i worked up a hilarious uncle gary impersonation
but it came from a place of love n understanding
so nk wasnt angry when i’d do it
and get stuck in character for a few hours
unable to stop being uncle gary
saying all his usual sayings
which can best be summed up by the phrase
(said in a slightly sozzled deep gruff ruff voice)
fuck em if they cant take a joke
one night after a huge uncle gary impersonation marathon
nk turned to me n said
steven…who were you before you were my family?
marty loves my uncle gary impersonation
often saying in the studio
cmon steve…do natalies uncle
then i’d eff n blind in my american accent
insultin’ every body
wheezing n coughing n pretending to be a little drunk
gary passed away on tuesday
and we all feel shocked
the polio, the drinkin’, the wild life caught up with him
and it was kinda expected
but i feel like i really lost an uncle myself
even tho gary wasnt really much older than me
yesterday i accidentally slipped into an uncle gary voice
then i looked up n said sorry to nk
no she said
i want you to keep on doing keeps him alive for me
so if ya hear me talking in a low gruff american accent
“yeah!” or
“sure, i bet youre a fucking genius!”
or some very uncorrect remark about
something a bit sensitive…
then ya know its uncle gary living on
thru me
a true one-off, break the mold
dont make em like that anymore character
uncle gary
you will be sorely sorely missed
we loved you, gfd
and i hope yer giving the waitresses in heaven hell!!
normal service resumed tomorrow

57 Responses to “unexplained absence”

  1. avatar
    Anonymous | 7 December 2006 at 9:06 pm #

    Sorry for the rough few days, Looking forward to regularly scheduled programming!

  2. avatar
    syrinx | 7 December 2006 at 9:15 pm #

    Awesome blog, awesome portrait. Well worth the wait, although sorry for your family’s loss and the general malaise that produced it. We’ll all think about this character now.

    Was someone *complaining* about your diction?

  3. avatar
    syrinx | 7 December 2006 at 9:21 pm #

    Oh man. I am so sorry. I was reading some stuff about Jeff Buckley and Tom Verlaine a little while ago and that just slipped out. SORRY. SORRY.

  4. avatar
    davem | 7 December 2006 at 9:21 pm #

    What an experience it is to get this close to the person you admire most in this world. Thanks once again for sharing.
    My love and thoughts go out to you and NK.
    I’ve never met you Steve but love you loads just the same.
    God bless you Uncle G.

    Dave M
    I sometimes wonder if you know how loved you are by so many? To respond to your blog as quickly as many of us do means we check in on it every hour or so! I hope it helps just a tiny bit when life is shite to know how many of us are “in your corner”.


  5. avatar
    Fandorin | 7 December 2006 at 9:23 pm #

    Is the interesting spoken word intro on Isidore Uncle Gary or a friend of his?
    3rd death this year on this blog
    all the best

  6. avatar
    Jab @ BZT | 7 December 2006 at 9:25 pm #

    My condolences to you and NK.

    And to the jackass that got us going on it being you, Steve, that passed, go fuck yourself. That wasn’t even remotely amusing.

  7. avatar
    Anonymous | 7 December 2006 at 9:29 pm #

    no need to apologise.
    thoughts are with you, nk and family.


  8. avatar
    syrinx | 7 December 2006 at 9:32 pm #


    Yeah. This is probably the wrong karmic collective to pull shit like that on. Do you see a lightning bolt headed someone’s way?

  9. avatar
    damien | 7 December 2006 at 9:41 pm #

    A beautiful epitaph, Steve.

  10. avatar
    Jab @ BZT | 7 December 2006 at 10:03 pm #

    Syrinx: A lightning bolt girdled by the stench of a thousand buffalo farts!

  11. avatar
    mandn | 7 December 2006 at 10:03 pm #

    glad you’re feeling better and so sorry about the loss of Uncle Gary.

    there’s always something kinda cool about a life well lived.
    can’t really say you lived unless people can sit around tellin’
    funny stories about you.

    keep them laughing Orpheus.


  12. avatar
    the dean | 7 December 2006 at 10:23 pm #

    No excuses needed for chuckin’ a sickie.
    You should have gone the trifector.

  13. avatar
    JJ | 7 December 2006 at 10:28 pm #

    SK –

    Sorry to hear this news; sounds like he had a big family that cared about him. You know, when I first started with this company I work for – there were these older “Uncle Garys” who had been around the block, pulled no punches, and were definitely not P.C. I fell in with some of them, and they “showed me the ropes” in the R&D organization. They’re almost all gone now; deceased or retired. There are no new ones taking their place, just faceless cultivated cardboard cutouts. I miss those guys for their refreshing candor and unvarnished opinions. I’d rather hear somebody’s real opinion, whether I like it or not, than some manufactured nicety; at least it’s genuine.

    “We welcome you”….back.


  14. avatar
    Anonymous | 7 December 2006 at 10:30 pm #

    a touching eulogy. sorry for your loss mate.

  15. avatar
    Anonymous | 7 December 2006 at 10:40 pm #


  16. avatar
    Anonymous | 7 December 2006 at 10:47 pm #

    I’m sorry for your loss. Every family has an “Uncle Gary” – mine was Uncle Norm.


    PS: My warning was Catholic school boys

  17. avatar
    fantasticandy | 7 December 2006 at 10:54 pm #

    i knew something major had gone down,sounds like one hell of a loss.everyone should have an uncle gary.————-andy L

  18. avatar
    ambnt1 | 7 December 2006 at 11:02 pm #


    Sorry for your loss.

    Welcome (Back) to the Machine.


    n.p. Rapoon, “The Kirghiz Light” (ethno-ambient-drone dream music)

  19. avatar
    CSTCoach | 7 December 2006 at 11:21 pm #

    No need to apologize for having a life outside the blog – ever!

    You have a gift for epitaph. You’ve painted a wonderful portrait. I’m sorry for your loss – he was well remembered and lives on in your “take” and in the blog. Please send my condolences to NK.


    – ps – i was left wondering the same thing about the spoken word bit in isidore – but recall reading somewhere that you’d developed an american tv evagelist’s voice after too much american tv

  20. avatar
    Anonymous | 7 December 2006 at 11:36 pm #

    I didn’t even KNOW Uncle Gary and he’s already one of my favourites…God bless him and his pink suit.

  21. avatar
    CeciliaGin | 7 December 2006 at 11:43 pm #

    Candles lit for Uncle Gary. Healing energy to you and NK, it’s a drag when you can’t physically hang around with someone anymore isn’t it?

  22. avatar
    Thomas Irvin | 7 December 2006 at 11:51 pm #

    That was beautiful, Steve. Reminded me of the beautiful stories you told about Grant six months ago.

    A soul should count him or herself lucky to have a friend like you who will keep their memory alive.

  23. avatar
    Anonymous | 7 December 2006 at 11:58 pm #

    Sorry to hear that sk. Sounds like he was a funny guy and generous too, and loved nk like his own daughter. It must be hard for her being so far away from her family, I hope she’ll be ok.

    I have to tell you sk, I was starting worry like a mother hen about our Timey Be, not hearing from you for two days, it seemed like two years!! I’m glad you’re ok and look forward to the usual (happier?) stuff tommorow.

    Take care and love you always,
    Amanda P

  24. avatar
    Melquiades | 8 December 2006 at 12:33 am #

    my condolences to you and the family

  25. avatar
    lee | 8 December 2006 at 12:45 am #

    Your mrs sounds brilliant 🙂 -keeps you on your toes.

  26. avatar
    nickfiction | 8 December 2006 at 1:14 am #

    I know this has nothing to do with anything here, but I wanted to comment on the song , ” Telepath ” what an amazing song.

  27. avatar
    Cameras 4 Eyes | 8 December 2006 at 1:17 am #

    SK, you’ve just expanded Uncle Gary’s circle of family and friends!

    Uncle Gary, Grant, all those who pass on live still in our hearts and our funny stories.

  28. avatar
    restaurant mark | 8 December 2006 at 1:25 am #

    sorry for your family’s loss steve…sounded like quite a character though, can picture him perfectly. take care man.

  29. avatar
    mike a | 8 December 2006 at 2:29 am #

    Sorry to hear about Uncle Gary – he sounded like a cool cat!!

  30. avatar
    captainmission | 8 December 2006 at 2:38 am #

    i’ve always believed that behind every great man there’s a great woman, and natilie seems to demonstrate the wisdom in that. i was sorry to read about uncle gary but it’s great that he can be remembered through you and still make people laugh. seems like laughter is the best medicine…..

  31. avatar
    Valerie | 8 December 2006 at 2:39 am #

    Much love from our family to yours at this trying time. Uncle Gary reminds me of my Theo Yanni whose best English phrase is ‘son of a bitches!’

  32. avatar
    stealthblue | 8 December 2006 at 2:44 am #

    Brother Steve,
    Sorry to hear about your family’s loss. He sounds like a real character who will be missed. Please tell your wife that our thoughts and best wishes are always with you Kilbeys. 🙂

    You sound incredibly busy, so take plenty of time for yourself when you can. Try not to get sick. I am trying myself, even with this crazy weather. You know today was the coldest day of the year (so far) for us in Chicago. HOLY SHEEEIT it was cold stepping out this morn. Apparently we registered at about 17F for a high, but when the wind blows, it knows no bounds…goes right through your double layers of clothes. Nuts, huh? What am I doing here again???

    Oh BTW, if you get your hands on an American issue of Rolling Stone (latest issue, Dec 14, #1015-it has Snoop Dogg in a Santa hat!) there is an article called “Boss Hog.” It is about the sickening, evil, ruthless, poisoning Pork industry, particularly that of one company called Smithfield. It may not surprise you, but I suggest that article to ANYONE. I am sorry if it grosses anyone out, but it is something we should ALL be aware of. I seriously think it might just be one of the most sickening things I have ever read, and it is very, very real stuff happening. Just think, that is just one asshole doing something like this. I do not buy pork, but I am boycotting this company and telling anyone who is willing to listen, “Please do NOT support this company. Buy no products from Smithfield.”

    Anyway, thank you for your lovely blog. It really is a blessing. Cheers to you and your family, and here is one for “old” uncle Gary…”CLINK!!” (with glasses of his fave drink)

    Much love and respect,
    Ben V.

  33. avatar
    Anonymous | 8 December 2006 at 3:14 am #

    Sounds like Uncle Gary gets to eat his ice cream
    and dance till dawn,
    sorry for the loss..
    I met a guy like that one night having a sip w/ some friends
    this older Southern Gent comes up to the bar
    we all say hi and he’s like hey ya..
    we both remark about the New Orleans saints game
    and he’s shaking my hand all enthused about it..
    turns out he’s an oil tycoon.. yikes, but oh well
    somebody’s gotta do it aye..and here he is..
    so then he buys me a drink, and we’re louisiana speakin..
    Then, as he’s surrounded by all his tight-collared collegues
    hes like “Good to meet ya, been around these friggin
    low-life, smalldick, ass-kissers all day,
    and he says it jus like he means it.. Nice and LOUD
    and the guys are all like wowsers
    I forcibly hadda laugh it up, to kinda make the joke for him..
    it was a pretty raw deal..
    but then again
    he’s Alabama Sam..
    Rooten Tooten..
    I’ll tell yu what..

    Uncle Gary, Vaya con Dios..
    seems like he lived it like he wanted to..
    the uncles always get missed so sorely.

    Sk take your rests my brother..
    quality over quantity always..
    be blessed..
    Go Veg…………………………………………………..

    jaime r…

  34. avatar
    JJ | 8 December 2006 at 3:45 am #

    Vegetarians……..just a note on (fave TV) History Channel biopic on Leonardo DaVinci lassa night: he was a vegetarian. Loved creatures as a boy, studied them in detail. Had a photographic memory. Hadda hide his vegetarian ways from the Church (the vatican kind), as one could be branded a heretic and punished.

    Lesse now…genius vegetarian artist/painter with photographic memory…..sounds familiar, but I can’t quite place why…


  35. avatar
    cita | 8 December 2006 at 5:14 am #

    I adore people who are brave enough to be themselves. Uncle Gary reminded me so much of my own dear Uncle Agustin who passed away about 3 years ago. He taught us all how to live. Uncle Gary made a larger than life cameo appearance on the time being today. You wrote a beautiful homage to him.

  36. avatar
    Noel Christian | 8 December 2006 at 5:58 am #

    My condolences and kindest regards, Steve.

    ‘who were you before you were my family?’ – and that is the sweetest thing I’ve read in a long while

  37. avatar
    Anonymous | 8 December 2006 at 6:45 am #

    Dear SK,

    Sorry to hear about Uncle G. Thoughts are with u & nk (hope she’s doing ok, sure you will make her smile with your impersonations.)
    He went way too young, sounds like such a lovely man and bet he was a like a 2nd Dad to nk. He will be sitting up in heaven, glass of vodka in one hand and saying well done sk you’ve done me proud with your story.

    Hope you’re feeling better, got the dreaded lurgey too. Hope the Manuka honey will be the cure.

    You’re off the hook for the 2 days and passed your exams with flying colours.

    love t

    p.s. are u gonna tell us about tv interview or is it top secret?

  38. avatar
    mime | 8 December 2006 at 7:48 am #

    Lovely tribute for a lonely man…

  39. avatar
    Tony Pucci | 8 December 2006 at 8:45 am #

    I’m sorry for your family’s loss, Steve
    Nice tribute to Gary
    here in your blog,
    well done.
    Peace to all,

  40. avatar
    leelinau | 8 December 2006 at 9:37 am #

    “remember this singer singing, I remember you”

  41. avatar
    Sweed | 8 December 2006 at 9:52 am #

    condolences…good read though as always…so good having you back Steve!

    Love ya!

  42. avatar
    Anonymous | 8 December 2006 at 10:03 am #

    No sweat SK. Hell, even I get three days a week off work.

    So sorry to hear about Uncle Gary, my condolences to you and NK.

  43. avatar
    eek | 8 December 2006 at 10:40 am #

    Beautiful eulogy SK. Clearly you had a lot of love and affection for him, and I suspect he quite enjoyed you also. Uncle Gary sounds like a quite a character who lived his life to the fullest. My condolences to you and especially to NK.

  44. avatar
    Anonymous | 8 December 2006 at 11:58 am #

    There should be Uncle Garys in the world. Special wishes to you and NK

    Love always
    Melbourne Mary

  45. avatar
    Daberhasher | 8 December 2006 at 12:01 pm #

    it’s amazing one can say nicely done, when one description of the subject reads, “pissed as a newt”, but tally ho, you did a nice job there…
    and you mentioned his ‘Vette twice, which must strum his new harp strings…

    peace and well wishes to you all…


  46. avatar
    Anonymous | 8 December 2006 at 2:11 pm #

    blessed be


  47. avatar
    Anthony | 8 December 2006 at 3:12 pm #

    My condolences to you and the family. Seems like I know Uncle Gary. Same as when you describe your father… feels like I know him too. Your affection for loved ones is infectious. I’m off to love my loved one today… it’s mine and Olivia’s one year anniversary and I’m kidnapping her from work and taking her for a surprise romantic night in the mountains. She’d love to hear from you… maybe a guick congrats? Would make her day… well I’m gonna make her day, but you know what I mean, HA!
    Take Care Steve,

  48. avatar
    CeciliaGin | 8 December 2006 at 4:32 pm #

    I haven’t read the article in RS, Ben, but I googled Smithfield and found their site. If anyone is going to boycott, go here and find out all of the products they produce, there are hundreds:

    Sorry for straying off topic…

  49. avatar
    Anonymous | 8 December 2006 at 5:04 pm #

    You are a good story-teller.

    John Garratt

  50. avatar
    Anonymous | 8 December 2006 at 5:34 pm #

    Impressive webpage[url=]![/url] I like it a lot! I’m looking forward to the next update


  51. avatar
    Anonymous | 8 December 2006 at 7:05 pm #


  52. avatar
    Anonymous | 8 December 2006 at 7:21 pm #

    Thanks for the blog and for being so genuine and real. I will always remember our encounter in 2004. A true gentleman, so calm and couth with a great since of realization for the obscure and ridiculous. I am sure you have seen it all.

    your fan since ’87,


    P.S. I want to sell your music!

  53. avatar
    missionman | 8 December 2006 at 7:46 pm #

    Thanks for the blog and for being so genuine and real. I will always remember our encounter in 2004. A true gentleman, so calm and couth with a great since of realization for the obscure and ridiculous. I am sure you have seen it all.

    your fan since ’87,


    P.S. I want to sell more of your music!

  54. avatar
    Renee | 8 December 2006 at 8:22 pm #

    I’m terribly sorry to hear of your loss
    actually it hits a little close to home
    my father was afflicted with polio as a child as well
    my father spent the majority of his adolescence in hospitals, wearing leg braces
    and undergoing numerous operations
    he always walked with a limp until
    his most recent operation which was about 4 years ago and the man is 62!
    I have read that later in life those with polio can develop complications and I believe that my father suffers continually although he never lets on about it

    my father, like your uncle, can be very callous and kinda cold hearted, very sarcastic and politically incorrect,
    but I love him despite all that!
    I think alot of it is the result of being in hospitals most of his life,
    I just can’t imagine what that was like for a young child not being able to play and go outside

    Your uncle sounds like quite a character and I’m sure he will be sorely missed 🙁

    Lots of luv to you and nk

  55. avatar
    (('{~_~}')) | 8 December 2006 at 10:51 pm #

    My condolences to you and nk.

    i want you to keep on doing keeps him alive for me

    This had me in tears.

  56. avatar
    CAPTAIN BEYOND | 8 December 2006 at 11:00 pm #

    me send me condolences and me long distance reiki to you and to nk via me love time machine…
    Uncle Neville

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