Published in the Baltimore Sun, 4 Aug 2009:
HYLBOM, Paul Hamlin On Tuesday, July 28, 2009 in Albuquerque,NM, Paul Hamlin Hylbom died suddenly at age 44 of a cerebral hemorrhage. Cherished friend of Michelle Miller of Albuquerque and beloved son of Penelope Walholm Hylbom and the late Tor Martin Hylbom of Baltimore, MD. Survived by brother Tor Hylbom and his wife, Mary, of Arcadia, CA, brother Matthew Hylbom and his wife, Sherry, of Baltimore, and sister Amy Hylbom Shook and her husband, Tom, of Fort Pierce, FL. Also survived by one nephew and seven nieces, an uncle, Roy Walholm, of Colorado Springs, CO, and an aunt, Ingrid Hylbom Hetfield, of Ocean View, DE and several cousins. Paul was raised in the Anneslie community of Baltimore and attended Towson High School and Towson University. He fell in love with the “Land of Enchantment” and moved from Baltimore to Albuquerque about four years ago where he enjoyed exploring New Mexico, its history, culture and people. He was working there for Megacorp at the time of his death. Internment will take place in Colorado Springs, CO.
Published on the Whiskey, Dogs, Weed & Waves blog, 28 Jul 2009:
My Best Pal, “Olaf” (nee Paul Hylbom), Suffered A Stroke And Died Yesterday, Or Today
He was not quite 44. He’d had a recent (July 4, et seq) attack of viral meningitis, which had weakened him a lot. Yesterday, at home, a stroke felled him. The docs say it was an aneurysm. His father died of a similar pathology, about 6 months ago.
Olaf was already brain-dead when they got him to the ER. He didn’t respond at all when the shoved the ventilator down his throat, a most uncomfortable experience if one is capable of experiencing or reacting to such things. He didn’t respond. Olaf’s on the ventilator til the family who can come to say good bye do. They’re discussing organ donation, which is a good thing. Another friend of mine needs a liver, e.g.
I knew Paul first as “Olaf,” a co-commentor on Atrios’ blog. He was from and had returned to Baltimore when we first started our colloquys. Later he moved to Albuquerque, and we became fast friends. I always called him Olaf, though later, I added “Pablo,” for the local color. He always called me “Woody.” He met his “Lil Red,” Michelle, at a gathering I arranged here in ’06.
The “Olaf” to whom he referred by his ‘nym’ is cummings’ “i sing of olaf, glad and big.” I knew from his reference to the poem that we could be friends, and we were. He was nearly as avid an esotericist/trivialist as I, and was widely read, especially since he’d mostly eschewed formal schooling. I think he had a BA, but had a breadth of reading and understanding, interest and complexity of thought that far outreached that level of interest.
He loved to drink beer, and we did so many an afternoon, many, many bottles. We were talking Sunday night about his and Michelle’s plans to visit Voodoo-fest in N’Awlins this fall. He wanted to visit the Abita Springs Brewery, in Covington.
He rode a Motoguzzi.
whose warmest heart recoiled at war:
a conscientious object-orhis wellbelov’d colonel(trig
westpointer most succinctly bred)
took erring Olaf soon in hand;
but–though an host of overjoyed
noncoms(first knocking on the head
him)do through icy waters roll
that helplessness which others stroke
with brushes recently employed
anent this muddy toiletbowl,
while kindred intellects evoke
allegiance per blunt instruments–
Olaf(being to all intents
a corpse and wanting any rag
upon what God unto him gave)
responds,without getting annoyed
“I will not kiss your fucking flag”straightway the silver bird looked grave
(departing hurriedly to shave)
but–though all kinds of officers
(a yearning nation’s blueeyed pride)
their passive prey did kick and curse
until for wear their clarion
voices and boots were much the worse,
and egged the firstclassprivates on
his rectum wickedly to tease
by means of skilfully applied
bayonets roasted hot with heat–
Olaf(upon what were once knees)
does almost ceaselessly repeat
“there is some shit I will not eat”
our president,being of which
assertions duly notified
threw the yellowsonofabitch
into a dungeon,where he died
Christ(of His mercy infinite)
i pray to see;and Olaf,too
unless statistics lie he was
more brave than me:more blond than you.
Our Olaf was a very special friend and pal, and I shall miss him very greatly.
He was a friend of mine…