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My friend Ryan's birthday is right about now. I don't know the exact
date, but I know it's in early November.

Ryan is a superhero. And like all superheroes her lives a dual life. By
day he is a tough, beer-drinking welder with a penchant for big pickup
trucks and Harleys. But by night he turns into a coffee-drinking, chain-
smoking comic book/fantasy artist. He even did it professionally for a
while, which isn't something he likes to talk about due to the fact that
his company screwed him over.

He once filed for an official superhero name, but as usual when it comes
to things like that things got bungled in red tape and he finally just
said to hell with it. His own favorite comic book hero is Spiderman.

Ryan is a very passionate guy — about a lot of things. In fact there's
practically nothing that doesn't get a serious response from Ryan, even
if it's the McDonald's Quarter Pounder with Cheese that he just bit
into. He'll stop for a second, give the sandwich a dirty look (or a
positive one) then continue eating. And he's like that about everything.

He's got a great sense of humor, like all my friends. He never fails to
pick up my spirits. Even if he's not in the best mood himself, he will
make some sort of joke or whatever to get me out of my doldrums.

Ryan is a guy who knows that the phrase "a man's best friend is his dog"
isn't just bullshit. He loves dogs. And when he sees me, he never fails
to ask how my dog Baron is. He has two dogs of his own, too. And I
sometimes think that Ryan is at his happiest when he is just out fishing
with his dogs. And he's a pretty good fisherman, too. He almost always
catches some fish.

He's an honest man; and he has a noble heart.

Ryan Beres, goddammit — love ya, man.


And here's a present for you —
Jessica with a motorcycle.