We were drinking and crying buddies

©Jeremy Balderson

“We were drinking and crying buddies and we had a reputation for getting really drunk and really sad. He turned me on to all the great Russian writers, and we turned into an English literature class where we would talk for hours about writers. Elliott was always seen as a man crying with a constant cloud over his head, but he was a hilarious guy, and he was like any of us – he had a full spectrum of emotion. I have no way to say how he died; nobody has actually ruled it as a suicide. I don’t think Elliott was thick-skinned enough. He cared too much about people, and he saw that people were waiting to take advantage of you and get rich off of other people’s talents. I don’t think I could ever be that guy. After Elliott died, I spent a lot of time just listening to his music that he would regularly give me over the years.  I still miss him. Some mornings I’ll wake up and think of a really amazing Japanese film, and I’ll want to go talk to him about it… I don’t try to romanticize the sad stuff anymore. Depression isn’t fun or cute, and it doesn’t make you more desirable. I don’t know if it killed him, but it didn’t make him happy when he was alive.”

Sean Croghan




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