A decade has past since I last saw Mike Tuller. Until yesterday March 6 when I met him for lunch at Hayden’s Grill in Tualatin. We had a great visit and did a lot of catching up. Not only is Mike a true American character in the finest sense of the word, he was also my most constant and most non-judgmental friend during the late 1980s and through the 1990s when my life was in turmoil, to say the least.
The novel Grommet Hunter includes Tuller, a character very similar to Mike in many ways. I wrote the character of Tuller as a real person, but with the gravitas and common sense that keeps dialog centered in reality.
I didn’t write about many of our doings, like that trip Mike and I took to New York City in September of 1999. We were two guys running around loose in the big city for nine days without wives or girlfriends, looking for adventure. We walked and rode subways. We stayed out of trouble, except for being admonished by museum security guards. In the Brooklyn Museum of Art there was that proximity sensor in front of some painting, probably a nice one. And in the Frick Collection: “Do not lean toward an exhibition, sir,” she told me as I studied the details in Hans Holbein’s portrait of Thomas Moore. Couple of scoundrels we were. Thanks for lunch, Mike.