Chicon 2000

Buck Coulson - 1928-1999

Rev. 14-Sep-1999

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Buck Coulson

May 12, 1928 -- February 19, 1999
by Gene DeWeese

Anyone with less discipline -- or stubbornness, he would probably say -- would've been dead a decade or two ago. One of his standard jokes was that he scared life insurance salesmen away by answering "Yes" to what the salesmen intended as a multiple choice question about what diseases he suffered from. In addition to adult-onset diabetes and lifelong asthma, he had two heart attacks, but, according to his doctor, his heart was in better shape the second time, largely because he had had the good sense to, among other things, pay attention to Juanita and her constant strict monitoring of his diet, not only at home but at the hundreds of cons they attended.

He long had the reputation -- often purposely cultivated -- of being the ultimate fannish curmudgeon. It started, I suspect, because he was simply the most honest person I've ever known and didn't suffer fools easily. And he didn't hesitate to let you know, as I found out on a couple of occasions when he thought, quite rightly, that I'd slipped into that category.

But I wouldn't trade the last half century of friendship with him for anything, from the days of the two-headed Thomas Stratton in EISFA and Yandro to the U.N.C.L.E. novels we resurrected him for and the hundreds of miniature golf games back when he and Juanita and my wife Bev and I seemed to spend almost every weekend together.

I just wish it could've gone on a few more years -- although I'm sure he'd be the first to grouse about such maudlin sentimentality. He'd probably shorten up a few of the preceding sentences, too.

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