The Wit and Wisdom of Fredk

Today, ROTI brings you the tale of a gentleman whose creative and unique take on life inspired an entire neighborhood.

For those who lived near him, Fred was not merely an old man down the street. He was a constant presence in their mailboxes, often delivering his hand-written tales around the most festive holidays. He was a comedy genius that wasn’t afraid to push the boundaries.

Trying to explain how entertaining his prose was could never really do him justice — so allow me to show you the mailing he sent out for Easter, 2009.

Although he called himself simply Fred, the way he abbreviated “Frederick” in his return address stickers — see above for an example — led many of the aficionados of his work to dub him Fredk.

He was a retired engineer who worked for Raytheon for many years; during his illustrious career he helped develop both radar and the microwave. In his retirement, he bent his considerable intellect to the creation of homemade comedy pieces that inspired all who saw them.

ROTI associate Major Beans, who lived across the street from Fredk, provided us with this collection of Fredk’s greatest hits, lovingly curated for your enjoyment.

Fredk often used a cartoon or greeting card as his jumping-off point (he especially liked Dana Summers’ “Bound and Gagged”) before descending into a comedy monologue that ranged from the silly to the absurd. Sometimes his messages would verge on the bizarre, openly encouraging the reader to think of him as a crazy person…

But for the many Fredk fans who eagerly looked forward to the next delivery from the comedy genius down the block, no Fredk flight of fancy was too weird:

If Fredk’s missives are to be believed, he was a party animal who never hesitated to crack a ribald joke.

Watch as Fredk gets a little bit blue in his St. Patrick’s day communique, demanding that the ladies show him their jumblies!

(Was Fredk channeling Phish there??)

If you got one of Fredk’s messages out of context — for example, if you just moved to the neighborhood and found the following letter in an unmailed envelope on your doorstep — you might have found his sense of humor frightening…

But the more you got to know Fredk, the better you appreciated his unique take on the world.

Perhaps his best work was when he turned his talents to the art of memoir, and let the reader in on his past.

I’m sad to report that Fredk recently passed away…

Although the great man may no longer be with us, his literature will stand the test of time.

About Alpine McGregor
Just like you, man. I got the shotgun, you got the briefcase. All in the game, though, right?

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