Arts and Culture

A Poem for Noah Tao

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I’m wearing my Lucky 13 shirt
with the legendary logo
of that ornery cat

But this time the cat’s face
is half covered with a bandana
that says 2020 on it
like it’s warning you to stay away

Noah made sure I got this shirt
because he knew how much I loved that bar
and he knew it was going away
but more importantly because he was my friend

That’s who he was

If you were his homie, he was
on your team
which meant you were in
his heart
which meant you were
someone he loved
which meant he would
think of you in those unexpected moments and reach out to say
“I got you” in a million different ways

Noah was the first person to tell me
“Loud Pipes Save Lives”
and in a way that sums him perfectly
too nice to be a biker
too biker to be that nice

A habitual button pusher
line stepper
shit talker
ball buster
mirth making
rat bastard sonofabitch who
lit up every fucking room he was in
even if he was burning it down

I loved that man and
this world is worse
without him in it

Unfortunately, loud pipes aren’t enough
to save everyone’s life
but I have a feeling they will be the music
that brings our boy Noah home

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Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

Stuart Schuffman, aka Broke-Ass Stuart, is a travel writer, poet, TV host, activist, and general shit-stirrer. His website BrokeAssStuart.com is one of the most influential arts & culture sites in the San Francisco Bay Area and his freelance writing has been featured in Lonely Planet, Conde Nast Traveler, The Bold Italic, Geek.com and too many other outlets to remember. His weekly column, Broke-Ass City, appears every other Thursday in the San Francisco Examiner. Stuart’s writing has been translated into four languages. In 2011 Stuart created and hosted the travel show Young, Broke, and Beautiful on IFC and in 2015 he ran for Mayor of San Francisco and got nearly 20k votes.

He's been called "an Underground legend": SF Chronicle , "an SF cult hero": SF Bay Guardian, and "the chief of cheap": Time Out New York.

10 Comments

  1. Talbot De Vil
    December 30, 2020 at 3:30 pm — Reply

    thank you Stuart for this beautifully accurate low-down on the man, the legend and my friend Noah. i’m printing this out and framing it next to a picture of him next to a bike he nicknamed “arley davidso” in the garage.

  2. A Poh
    December 30, 2020 at 10:21 pm — Reply

    never got to meet him formally. but he made a very close friend of mine feel a love that i am so happy they got to experience and can carry with them. anyone who makes someone feel like that is one of the best people i never had the pleasure of knowing. rest easy noah.

  3. Daniel
    December 31, 2020 at 12:10 am — Reply

    Well said

  4. Jen Anderson
    December 31, 2020 at 11:09 am — Reply

    You really hit the nail on the Noah here. Thank you so much for writing and sharing. I’m really gonna miss him.

  5. December 31, 2020 at 2:11 pm — Reply

    Thanks Stuart, Noah was such a kind a caring person, who’d somehow manage to bust your balls all in the same sentence. Well said sir.

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