Memories of our friend and colleague Kevin Angus Sinex

Angus’ Birthday

Hi friends,

I got an email from Debbie, Angus’s sister, reminding us that today would have been Angus’ 46th birthday. This, I’d think, is a great day to remember him with a good sushi dinner, as Debbie and Carolyn are doing, or maybe a wildly out of place workplace joke, or just a sigh as we all take a moment to reflect on what we’ve lost.

I know we all miss him everyday.

Best to all.

–Greg

Video from Memorial Service

Jerry Bernard produced a great video pulling together the remarks at the memorial.  I’ve posted it to Google Video, here it is…

Three Shows Weren’t Enough!

In 1998 we were doing a pharma job in San Diego.  Dale Ward recommended Angus to me because, shall we say, the schedule, the venue and the budget were all somewhat challenged?  

After Dale got me Angus’ contact number, I rang him up, introduced myself, the client, the venue and the challenges, and trust me here, the challenges were almost insurmountable!  Anyhow, fast forward to the day of load in, incidentally, which happened to fall on a Friday, you got it, Friday the 13th to be precise.  I remember walking in having only spoken with Angus on the phone, and like so many others, walked in to the venue filled with 50+ people, was able to instantly pick out Angus.  I introduce my self to Angus, expecting some sort of warm reply or return, WRONG! what I received was a dissertation on what the right thing to do was as far as having crew beverages on hand at load in.  Pretty funny by the way, especially when Angus a few clicks later brought me a hand written pice of paper explaning in clear detail the total estimated lost cost to the show, the budget and especially the time line for NOT having the proper beverages ready on hand throughout the run of show.

Needless to say, the load in, the show, the strike and Angus’ invoice all went well, matter of fact, I need to go look for that invoice as the time being 1998, email was barely being used.

Like many others here, a great and ever-lasting lesson was learned by me that day.  As a matter of fact, he taught the lesson so well that on the very next show, shall we say the crew F&B was so over-board, the price was greater than some entire electrics budgets on shows even by todays standards.  Oh, and in case you are wondering, yes, Angus was on that show as well and still had some commentary on what could be done better!

Angus, you will be missed, never forgotten nor will those small life (and show) lessons ever be forgotten.

Greg Cohen’s Remarks at the Memorial


Since we started this site, I’ve tried to think of funny stories to write about Angus, and there are so many.  But it’s hard to pick the right story among all the good ones, and writing, even now, is still hard.  But here is what I wrote to say at the memorial, and I thought I could at least post this if nothing else.

My friends,

We are together on an occasion that marks a horrible event – the death of a friend and colleague, a son, a cousin, a father, a husband, a brother to his sister and indeed to us all.  There is a hole in our life where Angus was, and this unfathomable loss produces a ocean of grief.

However, there is no one here that can’t find something to be thankful for.

We are all thankful that we ever met this great man.  We are thankful that we heard his annoying, grating voice across a crowded ballroom.  We are thankful that we had the opportunity to learn from a person who has shaped our industry.  We are thankful that we had the chance to love someone who truly loved us back, who would do anything to help a friend, and anything for a laugh.

It is hard when facing this devastating event to move beyond a obsession with endings.  I think we all stopped and thought, “When did I last speak to Angus?  When did he last text me?  When was the last time I introduced him to a friend or relative and paused for a long second in fear that he would say something horribly inappropriate?”

I sat at my computer and – using my geek powers — searched for every email we’d ever exchanged.  There was so much crap in our correspondence, insignificant stuff confirming dates or arguing about staffing.   Talking to Angus was always entertaining but often not  easy – those of us who had to deal with him and money always had to brace ourselves for the inevitable argument. Angus stuck to his guns.  And his guns were always loaded.

As I read through this email, I would find amazing gems, a look into this man’s kindness, a portal into his heart.  The last time I was supposed to work with Angus was in April on an IBM gig.  My wife’s father became gravely ill, and it was clear I wasn’t going to be able to make it.  I sent Angus an email explaining the situation and I told him I knew that he would cover me.  He replied that of course everything was going to be fine, that I should enjoy my time at home, and he signed it “love angus.”

Love Angus.  Indeed, we all do.

But although I needed to cling to that last email, to read it 40 times, to afford it more meaning than he ever intended, I realize now that not thinking about that email is the way to move forward.

We cannot make Angus’ life about his death.  We cannot become obsessed with the end of his time on earth, not because the end wasn’t significant – but because it was more significant than we can ever fathom.  The end was horrible, and because of that we will never come to terms with it.

I hope, over time, we can all move beyond this accident and remember this great man as he would want to be remembered.  As vibrantly alive, as a powerful force to be reckoned with, as a guy who could make us laugh harder than we thought possible.  As a friend to count on, as an electrician beyond compare.

From the day each of us met him it was impossible to not have him in your life. .  We are all so guarded, but he found a way to catch us all with our guard down.  Whatever emotional space you would allow him he would fill, with a smile or a joke, with a text message or a phone call, with a hug to say hello, or an obscenity to say goodbye.

He was amazing, at the top of his game, and to many of us, simply the best.

Professionally, he was a self made man, to be sure, and maybe being self made provided one of his only real professional shortcoming.  He was sometimes hesitant to reach out to others for help.

I remember doing a show here in Florida where Ginger and the girls stopped by.  Angus spent an hour with them at the pool on a show where there were plenty of hours to spare.  I think the invoice reflected that.

However, Angus never said to Chris or me or Cameron that he was escaping the ballroom.  He never whispered to me “cover me, I’m going to disappear for a few minutes,” almost because he didn’t want to admit that he couldn’t cover it all himself.

Now we’re faced with this horrible loss, and we’re all desperate to put it in a context that will allow us, to whatever small measure, to move on.  To start to fill this emotional space with the love of Angus’ life rather than the pain of his death.

We all need to find a way to say goodbye so we can start and continue to help Angus’ family and each other through this impossibly difficult time.

We need to console each other as we have no doubt Angus would want us to  — he  would be here if he could to hold our hand, to share a tear, and to crack a joke.

In his absence, I think I speak for us all when I say to Angus, his family, his friends and each other, “relax my friend, we’ll cover you now.”

Montage from Memorial Service

Hi all,

Here is the Montage that Robin Ticho created for the memorial service.

Get the Flash Player to see this content.

Message from Jodi Kidneigh

When I first moved to Orlando in 1992, I worked as a temp at the front desk in the Vanco office for a few months.  I don’t think a day went by, when Angus was in town (or even when he called in from show site), that he didn’t at some point leave me blushing in stunned disbelief, trying desperately to think of a clever retort to something he said.  I was shy and quiet at first, and like most people I think, not quite sure what to make of him.  Soon I realized he was playing with me though, and noticed the twinkle in his eye as he poked and prodded me for a reaction.  I became determined to hold my own with him, but he would always just take it up a notch if I ever had a good comeback.

 

I only worked with him for a short while, but here is my best Angus story.

 

My fiancée and I only had one car at the time, so he would drop me off in the morning, and usually I would have to wait around for him to pick me up after work.  Sometimes Carol would take me home (going way out of her way—but that’s another story).  One Friday, Carol must have dropped me off at home, and I had decided to walk the mile or two to Walgreen’s to fill a prescription.  So off I set on the long, hot walk, and knowing very few people in Orlando, imagine my surprise when I suddenly hear an already familiar voice yelling from across the median, “Hey good lookin’—where you going—wanna ride?”  There’s Angus in his truck, grinning from ear to ear like the Cheshire cat.  I tried to refuse politely, but then he teased me about how I must like to get all hot and sweaty and before I knew it, I was climbing into the cab.  I knew I was in for it—somehow he managed to get it out of me that the prescription was for my birth control pills!  I kept thinking “of all people—he is never going to stop teasing me about this at work!”  So we go to Walgreen’s and to my relief, he wanders off while I’m waiting in line to pick it up.  As I get closer to the counter though, he sidles up beside me, puts his arm around me, and says loud enough for everyone there to hear, “Hurry up honey, I wanna get home and get started!” I was dying of embarrassment, but couldn’t help laughing.  For the whole weekend, I kept imagining how he was going to torture me on Monday at Vanco, but he shocked me again, by not doing it.  He may have winked at me and made a vague reference to it, but I don’t know if he even ever told anybody else about it.  That was one of the coolest things about Angus, you never knew what to expect, and he would always surprise you whether by being decent or indecent.

 

The last time I saw him was at Chuck E Cheese of all places, 6 or 7 years ago.  I always thought I’d see him again somehow, and I will miss him.  Thanks for setting up this website, it has been wonderful to read all the Angus stories and feel the bond with everyone who was touched by this remarkable man. 

 

I learned from Angus not to take myself so seriously, to always have fun, even when you are working hard and things are not going as planned, and above all to be generous with yourself.  I’ve decided that whenever things are getting dull, or I’m feeling frustrated with a situation, I’m going to try to think of WWAD? (What Would Angus Do?).  I’m sure I could never get away with doing what he would do, but at least it will make me smile. . .

 

Ginger—I think I only met you once or twice, but I know he adored you and always talked about you.  You and the girls are in my thoughts and I hope to see you again and meet your girls sometime.

 

Hi to everyone I met at Vanco way back when—I only heard about Angus a couple of days ago so I didn’t make it to the service.  Hope you are all well aside from being heartbroken.

 

Jodi

 

Memories from Dale Ward

I’m not quite sure what the year was.  Sometimes it best that way, but I had asked Angus take on the job as head electrician for the Robert Palmer tour for which Shawn Richardson was the designer.
I flew to Columbus Ohio to see how things were going.  The tour was playing in a theatre on The Ohio State Fair grounds during the state fair.  Since it was state property, the Highway Patrol was handling the security at the event. (Yes folks, you can see where this is headed, but the twist is yet to come!)

Angus and I were standing at the back of the theatre watching the concert and discussing how things were going.  At one point we stopped talking and just watch the show.  After a few minutes, I noticed Angus talking to someone standing next to him, but the lighting for that particular number was rather soft, so I could not see who it was.  I could see that the person was a little taller than Angus, and was wearing a hat.  (Not unusual at a fair).  Angus now has is back to me and is giving the conversation, and the other conversant, his full attention.  As the next number starts the lights come up to full, and I can see that Angus is talking to a Highway Patrolman (Damn, that’s usually not good).  After a second look I discover the Highway Patrolman is in fact a Highway Patrolwoman!  (Double damn!  That’s really not good).

I’m trying to figure out how to get Angus out of the jam he has gotten himself into when I hear Angus say things like, “you know, I really get turned on by a woman who carries a gun,” and “do you think you could throw someone my size to the floor,” and “how many sets of handcuffs do you carry?”  Oh no, this is really, really not good!  How am I going to get him out of here before she goes over the edge and arrests him, and can I get Martee on the phone because he always had a bail bondsman on speed dial.  At that moment, the radio on Angus’s hip crackled with Shawn’s voice calling Angus to the lighting desk.  As Angus heads to see Shawn (yes the show still came first) he said to the officer “wait here, I’ll get rid of this guy and then you and I can go try out your patrol car”.  As Angus hurried away, the officer turned to me and said “is your friend for real?”  “What makes you think he’s MY friend?”  She laughed and walked away in one direction as I hurried away the other.

I never knew if Angus and the officer ever re-connected, but I know one thing was for sure, if they did, one way or the other, handcuffs WOULD be involved.

Dale Ward

Funny Wedding Moments with Angus

Imges from Memorial

Hey all, I have no idea why, but this gallery plugin doesn’t seem to work in Safari; it seems to work great in Firefox.


Memories from Erica C

Papa Smurf

He decided that I was the smurf…you know the short one with the funny hats.
So in turn he had to be papa smurf.  For no other reason than it made us giggle.

The inside jokes, the arguments over the size of Fuji apples, the starbucks runs
and sushi nights still bring a smile to my face.

He took prepping a show to a level that I had never seen before and a work ethic that I
will continually aspire to have.

Angus, thank you for being my teacher and sushi buddy.  I miss you Papa Smurf!

Hugs,

Erica C.