Readers of Hook Life have seen the posts about Arwen “Spliff” Rosa, the terrible car accident involving him, his wife and two other members of our community; and more recently the blog that helped to raise the funds to bring him back home.  However, many of you many not know much about this man and what effect has has had on those around him.  The following story, from guest writer Tim Taylor, gives everyone a bit of insight about the man called “Spliff” and more importantly how people came together to help in his time of need.

Tim – I first met Spliff and Jill in July of ’07 at the first CoRE Powwow in Oakland, Ca. Although I met a lot of people who became really important in my life that weekend, I gotta say Spliff stood out the most. Another rough-around-the-edges, loud-mouthed, crazy, PBR-drinkin’, knucklehead. Awesome! Finally, someone I could relate to in a way other than my love for hooks! So we spent the weekend with everyone getting by on a fine balance of learning a lot, meeting a lot of amazing people, and not drinking ourselves into a coma.

After Powwow ended, we joked around on the Internet and stayed  in contact through random emails and texts. We spoke our minds and ideas to each other on the theories of suspension and performance, so he had me join him in Florida for the Deerfield Beach Tattoo Expo; “Sounds fun; sure!” I said, not knowing the impact that weekend, and Jimmy Pinango falling, would have on the rest of my life in so many different ways. (The fall of Jimmy Pinango is still considered to be the worst accident to have every happened in the world of suspension.  Although tragic, it brought our community together raising both safety awareness and creating new minimum standards.)

Another year or so passed with the whirlwind of DHS, SMS, AGRO, Hooked, and CoRE. Haunted houses, concerts in legendary NYC venues with Nassau Chainsaw and DDC, superpulls, parties everywhere in the U.S., suscons, amazing shows, and everything in between. In the process of all this, I had been asked to be the director of the Houston chapter of CoRE. Those of you who know me, know that I would need some help with this, so I recruited Spliff and Jill (Arwen’s Wife), knowing their passion and love for what we do as a community. Again, I couldn’t predict the results of my actions, and the affect this would have on not only my life, but those around me in Houston. They were like a breath of fresh air! We performed amazing suspensions at least weekly, the passing of knowledge both ways was a daily occurrence, and we developed beautiful rigging and keen business management, with the drive to put it all together and make it work. This affected me dramatically.

I realize now that I’m not the only person that these people have affected. You have proven this in the actions shown by so many in the past six months. I have seen enemies and friends alike pull together  and help a fallen comrade, a brother, a father, and a friend. Not only that, but watched the best future mother and wife that I think any of us will ever know lead a whole crew of misfits and outcasts into a frenzy of phone calls, emails, benefit shows and sleepless nights, to accomplish a goal bigger then any and all of us, for a dedicated, loyal symbol in our league, a man that has impacted the lives of so many.

This is why I propose that we honor January 5th among us, not only as a day for the obvious, to recognize Spliff and Jill for all they have overcome, but as a day to celebrate the amazing energy put forth by everyone involved in this epic win in the healing of our friend and brother, and to show what we can manifest when we come together as a community and fight for what we believe to be a righteous and true cause.

Although they have made it this far, there is still a long road ahead and they can use all the support they can get. So please, if you can help, send donations to:

Thank you for making me proud to be a part of this beautiful family.

Tim Taylor