Adam Parker Block Memorial----1951-2008

Adam Parker Block----1951-2008

Adam Parker Block, 56, died Sunday morning January 27th at his home in San Francisco after a protracted pulmonary illness. A fifth generation Seattleite, he was born at Swedish Hospital February 7, 1951. He attended high school at Lakeside and Putney Schools and college at Reed, California Institute of the Arts (Cal Arts), graduating from Harvard.

Adam was a writer, avid reader and keen social observer and critic whose deep curiosity and insights crossed many disciplines. He lived in San Francisco for the past 30 years. In the 80’s Adam was popular music critic for The Advocate where he wrote a regular column, "Block on Rock". His writing also appeared in numerous publications including Mother Jones, the San Francisco Examiner magazine Image, the Bay Area Reporter, the New Musical Express and Creem. During that time, Adam interviewed virtually every pop star from Elton John to Bono.

Adam was a challenging and unforgettable friend, in turns fiercely loyal and loving and breathtakingly selfish, combative and self absorbed. His curiosity, knowledge, humor and spirit were contagious. Adam believed punctuality, deadlines and being awake during daylight hours were vastly overrated. He loved to outrage and often bragged that being gay, Jewish and half Texan (on his mother’s side)---he had something to offend most everyone. Adam loved literature, art, music, film, news, politics, humor, ideas, food, drink and travel---but most of all, smart lively conversation and animated debate.

Adam is survived by nine siblings; Jonathan, Daniel, Kenan, Susanna, Mary Judith, Tamara, Christina, Melinda, Newton and his step mother, Mary Lou Block as well as 13 nieces and nephews. Adam’s father Robert Jackson Block and mother Dorothy Wolens Block preceded him in death.

With Adam’s death, the lives of those who knew him will be calmer and quieter but far less interesting.


Tuesday, March 4, 2008

from Julie Glantz

Adam was basically the Majordomo Extraordinaire of my welcoming committee when I first chased a dream and a boyfriend to San Francisco in the early eighties and moved into the three story Victorian on Grant Street with Adam Block and Rob Morris.

There was always some opinion or advice Adam had to offer, whether it was invited or not. He certainly had a point of view and a sense of humor that was unique.

The endless rants about the Chinese landlords were unforgettable, as was Adam's remarkable sense of decor, in the form of every single newspaper, magazine, book, postcard he'd ever received just stacked everywhere. The parade of visitors, and the accompanying comments or full on critiques when they left were the stuff of brilliant comic monologues and sharp social commentary.

That experience certainly made a lasting impression: after returning to New York for a couple of years, I truly left my heart in San Francisco and returned to stay in the early nineties.

I spoke with Adam many times after I'd made the big migration, even saw him on a couple of occasions, but my life had changed so much that we hardly moved in the same circles anymore. When I got the email with this news of Adam's passing, I felt a sharp pang in my heart, knowing for certain that an incredibly bright star would shine in everyone's memory. Truly an unforgettable character.

Julie Glantz

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