I was stunned when Alicia presented me the book with all your affirmations of love and SO many wonderful photos (many of which I’d never seen!). You can imagine how emotional it was—love letters straight from your hearts. Later that evening, working on some tunes I’d planned to record with Sooney and Alicia, there was a noise in the hallway and a guy entered the room with a paper bag on his head. He broke into a funky dance move and it was clear Alicia & Sooney weren’t finished—the bag guy was my dear friend Phil Miller from Tucson who’s never been one to miss a party.
The BIRTHDAY began with a hike & picnic with Paul & Goly in our local hills that included an extended visit with a Northern Pygmy-Owl. We then took off for 4 fabulous days in Bend; the snow was great, Smith Rock incredible, Bloody Maria’s accompanying scrumptious breakfasts, and our extended family repeatedly making me smile. Now THAT’s a birthday party!
I’ve compiled all your thoughtful contributions and many of the photos into a blog post that I can visit whenever I’m in a funk. It’s nothing like the lovely publication Alicia created but full of love nonetheless.
I love you dad because you taught me how to get high on adrenaline at a young age – such as by making my first pair of skis and teaching me how to ski, showing me how to handle my shit on a roller coaster, and for skiing fast with me.
I love how you love thrills and how you provided coaching on getting those life-enhancing thrills myself!
I love you dad because you have provided me a model of how to live with joy, continued growth, great curiosity and wonder, love, and spirit that continues expanding instead of dwindling.
I love you dad because you have shared with me the experience and lessons on love, and how to love, and how to be in a loving respectful relationship. I’m a late bloomer in the commitment category partly because I know that men like you are out there!
I love you dad because you sat with me over hot burritos and taught me how to appreciate spicy food. “Stay with the sweat. It’s ok if you’re scalp sweats. Just breathe and appreciate.”
I love you dad because I have vivid memories of living overseas with you which helped me view this grand world as a place of wonder based upon your adventurous and curious outlook. I love you dad because of your unconditional love and support. Your heart shines so brightly I can feel it no matter where I am. – So ❤︎
Nick Viani and I met in 1975. Forty years together and I say with certainty, that my husband, my life partner and co-parent, is the love of my life! You are my rock, my home, a place of comfort and safety, a source of inspiration and awe. I can’t imagine a more perfect partner and father of Alicia. You are an optimistic fellow, capable and skilled in diverse ways, a natural teacher, can figure most anything out, and always supportive, respectful and kind.
I remember when Alicia, as a new driver, backed into our garage door frame (crunch!) and bashed the bumper of our blue Honda, (wham!) Nick and Alicia worked together on located a new fender and replaced the smashed one. I remember them in the garage with the necessary tools, listening to music and working on the car. They worked on replacing the wood framing of the garage door as well. I love the way Nick is patient, thorough and follows through with important business in a loving and supportive way.
I love being in our kayak with Nick, enjoying being in nature, observing life around us and letting the time go by. Food in the cooler, binocs and bird book nearby, just paddling along and being together.
I love the way Nick skis with me. He is there for me, guiding me, giving me hints and feedback on my skiing. If there is good snow off the groomed area, he is in it, while knowing where I am, always encouraging me to stretch a little more. He’ll take me to places he knows I am ready for and tells me when I won’t like it!
Nick makes the BEST macaroni and cheese! We who are fortunate to consume it, LOVE IT and want MORE!!!
I love the way Nick gets ready to work in the garden. He gets his “fightin’” clothes on. He tells me how much he loves being in the garden with me. (good strategy, Nick!)
I loved the way Nick was so brave and bold when we were teaching Alicia how to swim. He was the one who blew into her face and pushed her under the water over to me.
I always feel loved by you and appreciated. I love you. – Sooneybird ❤︎
Who could not love a man who raised a daughter as lovely and loving as Alicia – Karen D. ❤︎
So, Nick. As the single mother of Alicia’s dear friend, Bethany, (now and) at AHS, I always could count on your warmth and good cheer. It wasn’t only Bethany that was always welcomed and made to feel comfortable, but, especially as a single woman, was something I greatly appreciated. I think your kindness and thoughtfulness radiates from you as well as your warmth. Your family is lucky to have you as are your friends. – Tanya ❤︎
Emma and I wish we could be there to celebrate Nick’s 70th birthday, as you are our life-long friend, my teacher and companion in squash, golf, and dominoes, the trusted manager of my daughter’s trust, the loving husband and duet partner of my dearest friend, Sooney, and the mentor-father of a gifted singer-daughter…. May God bless and keep you always. – Rachmat & Emma ❤︎
I love Nick because Nick has always been a positive influence in my life and has taught me the virtues of patience, compassion, determination and artistic-expression. I am grateful to call Nick my Uncle and my Friend! – Greg ❤︎
We love Nick for his playfulness, his bubbling enthusiasm and his positive approach to life and problem-solving. He’s just plain a fun guy to be around! Oh, and did we mention his photographic and musical skills? And skiing and golf prowess? – Dave and Linda ❤︎
I love Nick Viani because he is so unbelievably kind and thoughtful and is always willing to take the time to teach you about something, like how to use a camera. I never really knew what I was doing when I would take a picture, which Nick picked up on quite quickly during our trip together in Finland during the summer of 2010. Nick was so patient with me and took the time to show me all the basics I never knew about, such as how to focus properly, when and when not to use flash, different focus points, etc. He also then made sure I knew how to upload all my photos to Picasa so we could have a slideshow every night. Whenever I take a picture now I think of Nick and smile. He was an excellent teacher. – Catherine ❤︎
I love Nick Viani because he looks into you with those eyes that say “I will be there for you if you ever need me”. – Jordan ❤︎
I Love Nick Viani’s Cheerful Disposition and Generous Nature! He’s the Soul of our neighborhood! And a Fearless Dang-Good gopher and rat trap setter! And a technophile always glad to help with those types of pesky little perplexities. And an absolutely fabulous photographer. Look at the pics in his garage! And he’s always happy to make a toast with tequila!! Life’s a Celebration, and Nick is Full of Life and Love! – Laura ❤︎
I love Nick Viani for bringing my wonderful friend Alicia into the world (with Sooney, of course) and helping make her the lovely soul she is; for his sweet, soulful eyes; for his Obama ponytail; for sharing his epic and ingeniously organized record collection; for opening his home to friends who would be family; for the way he loves dogs, both his (RIP Gooper) and grand-dogs (Leonard Cohen aka Leo the Lion); for his gentle demeanor, and for his contagious laugh. Many happy returns, Nick! – Bethany ❤︎
Nick made me feel like family practically from the first time I met him. It takes a tremendously generous heart to open up to people like that, loving kindness at it’s finest, and it’s something I personally aspire to. – Steve E. ❤︎
Why I love Nick Viani? This is not a hard question to answer and actually I like that your request has stopped me for a moment in life to reflect on Nick as when you stop to really think about someone like Nick, its quite interesting the emotions that rise up.
The first part is something that everyone has observed is what a great Husband he has been to my sister and what a great dad he has been for Alicia. His devotion to putting his family first he has never wavered from. Oh sure once in awhile he might put a good cheeseburger in front of himself to enjoy not thinking of others, but that I understand. Especially if it is an In and Out with onions!!!
One might think that is easy for all. Look around. I am afraid that the childhood that Sooney, Alicia, and I experienced is not the norm. I don’t need Nick to do any other thing in life to make me love him besides that. But there is more.
Ever since I meet Nick he has always accepted me with a warm smile and a genuine interest in what was happening in my Life. Always trying to see things from my perspective so he really understands. I always have a feeling that Nick is there for me. If I am ever in need. That is just a couple of the many reasons we all love Nick. Just to have some balance I would like to tell you about something that bugs me about Nick. When he golfs he actually tries to draw the ball. What a “Goofus “. The game is to be played with a popcorn fart fade. There you go—there is a downside to Nick Viani. – Jon ❤︎
My goodness, I can hardly believe you are so old. Glad that hasn’t happened to me. I certainly count it a privilege having been a friend of Nick Viani over all these years. A lot of memories: The fourth grade classroom, sessions in the dark room, Bank Street writer, the Writing Process, the endless hours Alicia and Shane played together, dinners, friends, the welcome matt always down at Villa Viani. Stay healthy, my friend. I’d like to be neighbors for another 20 years or so. What the hell, make that 30. At least for me, anyway. Have a really great day with that wonderful family of yours. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, NICK! -Dave and Sumiko ❤︎
I think that out of all the time Nick I spent at the ESD one of the memories is a small one. Once a month we had n IT department meeting. They drug on and we would break for lunch. Our tech snuck into Nick’s office and loaded a little app on his Mac. When Nick returned to do some email on the lunch break he turned on his MAC and little official window popped up “Hard Drive Issues, Click OKAY to reformat hard drive.” There were no other options. Nick started to take it all in, called me from across the hall. Eyes rather wide with the first signs of panic. Then the tech appeared telling Nick it was all a Joke. Nick never got mad, never really panicked (well not too much). He took it in, joke all and LAUGHED! Rather to the Joke or in relief I do not recall. – Thomas ❤︎
Nick Viani is 70! He does yoga. He helps with technology. He took 80 year old Fred golfing. He gardens. He knows Indonesian textiles. He listens. He’s kind. He’s organized. But the 2 most important things about Nick is how he cherishes and supports his wonderful wife and dazzling daughter. He honors Sooney’s celebration of birds, her teaching of children, her sewing and her bedside singing. He honors Alicia’s music, love of horses, horse songs, skiing, bands and singing. We love Nick! We love all the Vianis. Happy 70th Birthday, Nick! – Gail, Heidi, Greg, Mireya and Tygh, Gretchen, Noah and Ellie ❤︎
Nick has been a good friend to me and he makes it fun to hang out with Sooney! We love you guys. – Tim ❤︎
Nick personified the essence of (our fraternity) creed, “The True Gentleman.” And I sense Nick’s role as a loving husband, father, brother, uncle and friend to many will be duly noted. As an athlete I’ve admired his prowess since our sophomore year in high school. The Dali Lama was interviewed sometime ago, and was asked if he could summarize his religion (Tibetan Buddhism). The Dali Lama smiled and said, “Yes, I can do that in two words–be kind” Nick has lived a wonderful life and indeed he has been a kind man, Perhaps one of the most outstanding characteristics one could have.
Hey brother, wish I could be in Ashland with y’all to celebrate your 70th. You might consider stating your age as, three score and ten (sort of Lincolnesque). Love you Bro,
– Philip ❤︎
Nick is a man who is not afraid to invite you to join him naked in the hot tub the first time you meet him, just a very few minutes after, in fact. That’s not to say that he’s obvious–it takes a little time to know him and understand that he’s up for anything, with a smile and a sense of adventure. His curiosity about the world and pleasure at being alive is infectious, and his musical taste is impeccable. Most of all, though, you realize, getting to know him, that he wants to share all of this, to walk a path together, wandering both his way and yours, and to invite still others to join in along the way. It’s a guarantee that he will show up in unexpected places and always be a most welcome sight. These are but a few of the reasons why I love Nick Viani and wish him well on this milestone, with the hope of many more shared adventures to come. – Steve P. ❤︎
Some of the best days of my life have been spent playing golf with my favorite foursome. As Agatha McNaughton says to the boys in “Golf in the Kingdom:”
All those gentlemanly rools, why they’re the proper rools of affection — all the waitin’ and oohin’ and ahin’ o’er yer shots, all the talk o’ this one’s drive and that one’s putt and the other one’s gorgeous swing — what is it all but love? Men lovin’ men, that’s what golf is. – Jim ❤︎
We have many happy memories of Nick from Balikpapan days and his Bird. Most of all we think of him as being creative and artistic infusing his daily life with those talents. Both he and Sooney reached far into the culture where they were living gaining positive appreciation of what the countries had to offer. Never negative when cockroaches invaded or Hash runs went through kampong mud, Nick was always positive. Then came his technology expertise which he so willingly helped other less tuned in to understand. On On, Nick. A very Happy Birthday. – Jane and Phil ❤︎
Alicia, the first is from our 50th high school reunion. He still has that high school impish look on his face. I wonder what he was about to do or say. Only he knows. The others are in the Oregon forest. I send my deep gratitude to both nick and Sooney for rescuing me and pumping life back into me through there wonderful hospitality. I will always be grateful to them for picking me up in the middle of the forest (at the cal. Oregon border). And if that wasn’t enough picking me up at the airport, showing me the wonderful town of Ashland, once again feeding and sheltering me and depositing me in the middle of the forest. Hope you enjoy four 70th and happy trails, – Dan ❤︎
A DIAMOND in the RUFF. I couldn’t PASS this opportunity to say I hope it’s in the CARDS for you to have a GRAND SLAM of a 70th birthday. Love from the HEART. – Joan ❤︎
There once was a great friend named Nick,
Whose smile is ever so quick.
He loves life and exudes joy,
Has every possible kind of toy,
And he’s been with us through thin and through thick.
– Marcia ❤︎
He is our friend, outdoorsman, birder, hiker, teacher; a man who enjoys God’s creation as much as we do. May Psalm 118:14 be his gift in his seventh decade of life: The Lord is my strength and song, and has become my salvation. “My strength,” that I am able to resist my enemies; “my salvation,” that I am delivered from my enemies; “my song,” that I may joyfully praise him and sing of him after I am delivered. William Nicholson, 1662.
Joy & Peace. – Bob & Bev ❤︎
Nick has always inspired me with his singing and guitar talents and he gave me lots of insight into cameras and photography. His passion and love for life is still inspiring us! Happy Birthday to Nick from both of us. – Wayne and LouAnne ❤︎
Most outstanding to me is – picture this – Nick and Sooney picking guitars and singing on our couch on any of several visits to Seal Beach. And then, taking that to another level, is Nick, coming from Oregon to play and sing a very special, self written song at Bud’s Memorial. What a devoted friend! Happy Birthday, Nick. How the time does fly. Happy Celebration! – Love, Becky ❤︎
70 years old?? Are you sure? He skis too good. – Jim C. ❤︎
HAPPY 70th, NICK! I’m so pleased to be the recipient of your welcoming kiss and farewell hug that prefaces and concludes our meetings! Thanks for your generous electronic help and sharing the enjoyment of the bridge table. May all continue happily between us for many birthdays to come. Affectionately, Lou ❤︎
Thinking of the times in the last few years that Nick (& Sooney) opened their home up to us, virtual strangers, and made us feel at home as we discovered Ashland. I also remember Nick inviting us to a concert at the Unitarian church and discovering that he not only new all the old songs, he also new most of the words!!!! After the concert we returned to his house for a nightcap and listening to some music. He brought out a very extensive catalog he had compiled and we listened to music; all on vinyl!!!! Only in Ashland! Thanks Nick. – Little George & Lynda ❤︎
Gotta love Nick. He is an extraordinary teacher and good friend. – Terry K. ❤︎
We love Nick Viani because he is Optimistic
We love Nick Viani because he is Positive
We love Nick Viani because he is Passionate about life and everything he does
We love Nick Viani because he is Loving
We love Nick Viani because he is Compassionate
We love Nick Viani because he has Depth of character and integrity
We love Nick Viani because he is Caring
We love Nick Viani because he is Respectful
We love Nick Viani because he Likes to laugh and play
We love Nick Viani because he is Organized and planful
We love Nick Viani because he is Authentic and Genuine
We love Nick Viani because he is Adventurous
We love Nick Viani because he is enthusiastic
We love Nick Viani because he is a life long learner
We love Nick Viani because he is Fun loving
We love Nick Viani because he is Warm
We love Nick Viani because he is Kind
We love Nick Viani because he is Thoughtful
We love Nick Viani because he is Generous
We love Nick Viani because he is Talented
We love Nick Viani because he is a Hard worker
We love Nick Viani because he is Creative
We love Nick Viani because he is Helpful
We love Nick Viani because he is Attentive
We love Nick Viani because he is Joyful to be around
We love Nick Viani because he is Self Aware
We love Nick Viani because he is Supportive
We love Nick Viani because he is a Solid friend
We love Nick Viani because he is a Good listener
We love Nick Viani because he Shares his knowledge, his Joy, and his Time
We love Nick Viani because he is There! He is very Present. When you are talking with Nick, he acts like you are the only one that matters at that moment. He is focused and interested, and listens carefully to what you are saying or how you are feeling.
We love Nick Viani because he is Understanding
We love Nick Viani because he was the second person I know after (our friend) Robert who promoted the the art of Selfies
We love Nick Viani because he is Patient
We love Nick Viani because he is Smart
We love Nick Viani because he is Intellectually curious
We love Nick Viani because he Likes to try new things
We love Nick Viani because he is Musically Talented
We love Nick Viani because he is Calm
We love Nick Viani because he is Technologically Savvy
We love Nick Viani because he Has this amazing sparkle in his eyes
We love Nick Viani because he Enjoys great cooking and appreciates flavors
We love Nick Viani because he is a Good friend during good times and bad times
Happy 70th Birthday Nick. Much love, Paul and Goly ❤︎
On a slight tangent I was thinking of you last night before your email. I had computer problems, in short glitches with email. Then I was able to receive (yours and others) but not send. How he would be helpful, thoughtful, educating, determined, and straightforward. That is just with computers. I will give more. Inspiring, creative, a naturalist, focused, well-rounded, direct, easy going, compassionate, conscious, prepared, articulate, loving, and caring. – Christopher ❤︎
I love you for your welcoming arms, heart, mind and eyes….i love you for your never ending love of music and the way you can bring a smile to a room…i love you for the way you’ve taken us into your family and for the way you trust in us as we’re blood…i love you for the value that you put on family and for the encouragement and guidance you give to those around you…i love you for your sense of adventure…i love your silliness, your stories, and the way you approach the world…i love you for treading lightly on this earth…and to being a father figure to me here in Oregon. Happy birthday, Nicola. – Stacey ❤︎
Our young daughter Ana was fascinated with trains. We came over and spent a lovely evening searching through Nick’s collection of LPs and recording train songs to a cassette tape. She had never seen a record player before! Ana had her own tape player in her room and would listen to the songs there or in the car and rock out in her seat. – Monty, Jane & Ana ❤︎
I love Nick Viani because from the minute I met his eyes and smile, I instantly felt his care and generous spirit. One of my fav memories of this was a floor snuggle with Nick and Alicia laughing and loving while Sooney sang sweetly. – Anna R. ❤︎
I love Nick Viani’s love of life and hunger for connection- he invites you into his life and he listens with an open heart and a sharp mind. Nick is a grand adventurer, he actively seeks other viewpoints and cultures, and his kindness is infectious. And, when counting the reasons I love Nick, it can’t be ignored that he’s a superb father- he raised and gave life to the most extraordinary, fabulous, adventurous friend I’ve ever had. – Zen ❤︎
It is hard to know where to begin. I love that Nick Viani has a passion for bocce that makes playing and learning with him one of the best activities at family camp. I love Nick’s never ending high spirits, constant consideration of others and taste for good tequila. I love Nick’s adventurous spirit and ability to be still and relax. I love Nick’s laugh and singing voice and willingness to play music at any moment. Well, I just really love Nick! Happy birthday. – Rachael ❤︎
I love Nick’s enthusiasm for a life well lived. He’s ready for adventure and ready to share good times with good friends. To life! To love! And Buon Appetito! – Gay ❤︎
Both Nick and Sooney were very kind to help me with Bob when he got sick and was failing so badly. Nick came up a couple of times to help me when he fell and I couldn’t get him up off the floor.
One time I asked Nick to watch Bob while I went out. Can’t remember quite why or what I was doing, but I was gone for a few days and he was one of several people I asked to look in on Bob. I think it was one of the very last times I could be gone for a few days. I came home and Nick had the stereo going, had made a great meal for Bob, and was so cheery as he stayed with Bob. I remember him more or less dancing around the kitchen as he prepared the meal.
For me it was a godsend to have Nick to call on for quite a number of things during that very difficult time. Your dad has helped me with lots of things, but the memories that really stick are when he helped with Bob and was so compassionate. Look forward to a fun celebration. – Kate ❤︎
A loving heart so big it permanently appears on your face. Kindness so deep, that even during messy life challenges, your potent kindness softened and supported the situation. At one of the most difficult times for my family, you stood by with your big heart, keen and nonjudgmental insight, loving support for all involved, and practical suggestions. When I think of that tough time, and the unlikely possibility of getting through it, I always see your face. You were a neighbor, friend, brother, and wise man. You were a big part in how we did get through it. (I’m failing to find words to describe the night we snagged the truck, but surely we saved lives by our caper, and needless to say, I could not have done it without you!)
I love the memories of better days on Paradise Lane, and most of them include you (and your family): you all shaving your heads to support Marge when she had surgery; red wine, lamb, and garden tomatoes on one of two porches; sledding down the surprisingly deep hillside snow on sleds with our kids; updates about Alicia, Italy, and gardens; Gooper visits.
One of my favorite and most recent memories, which I hope we get to relive a version of in the near future, was sitting in your backyard sharing a glass of red wine and something yummy Sooney was feeding us and you sharing your love for your sister, while Alicia and friend sang and strummed in the background. It was a beautiful night, and even though you were sharing a sad story, you shared in such a profoundly kind and loving way that it was exquisite: the love you have for your sister, your family, your friends. Thank you for being a great role model, friend, neighbor, and fan of my rascal dad. We are long overdue for a visit, which I look forward to very much. Much love and best wishes on your 70th birthday. May this be a healthy and happy year and new decade in your life. – Maria ❤︎
I love Nick Viani because he asks great questions that lead to great conversations. He also has great taste in art, and wonderful stories to share. Time spent with Nick is time well spent! – Kenie ❤︎
We love Papa Nick. We just do. He is kind, gracious, easygoing and engaging. He is a wonderful model of a loving, supportive father to our beautiful sister-friend Alicia and we are glad to have him as a friend. Many, many joyful returns and love from SE/PDX.- Berk & Jam ❤︎
The Qualities I Value in a Teacher Are:
• Comprehensive knowledge of and enthusiasm for the subject matter
• The ability to explain the material to students without talking down to them
• Well organized, with a thoughtful lesson plan
• Sense of humor
• Humility – the ability to admit when s/he doesn’t know something
My friend, Nick Viani, has all of these qualities; he is a Teacher Extraordinaire. – Lesley ❤︎
Nick, We’ve known each other for about 20 years because our wives are teachers. I think you are a really nice guy who likes to help others and be good to the earth. You also like to know lots of people and exchange ideas! Happy birthday. – Larry and Trisha ❤︎
The way Sooney and you parented, and continue to parent Alicia. The ways you have loved her has directly impacted my life. She is my best friend, and without your guidance, love, encouragement, and support she might not have ever crossed paths with me, and for that I will be eternally grateful.
I love the Nick tends to spout out fantastic quotes, especially after a little partying. On Christmas day, while listening to Motown, Nick stated, “the people who were in the know, really knew.” This is simply fantastic.
I love Nick’s eye… the way his photographs communicate about love and humanity is beautiful, calming, and inspiring. All of it. – Mosan ❤︎
It’s impossible to encapsulate my friendship with Nick in a paragraph, but I’ll try. I moved to La Canada in the summer of 1959 after completion of 8th grade. Nick was one of the first guys I met as we were teammates on the Rustic Stone Pony League baseball team. For the 4 years of high school we almost lived at each other’s homes, spent vacations together, double dated, player guitars, commiserated when dumped by our latest flames and just had a great time being St. Francis Golden Knights. We attended different colleges but joined the same fraternity. Nick may not want this to get out, but he and I were Young Republicans together in high school until he was seduced by the dark side (just kidding Nick). When I got engaged, Nick was the first one I asked to be in the wedding. Though the years have taken us in different directions and occupations, we still manage to communicate and enjoy each other’s families as often as possible. I will always cherish our friendship and thank my lucky stars that fate had us on the same ball club those many years ago. Happy Birthday, Nick. – Mike ❤︎
Happy Birthday to one of the best neighbor’s we’ve ever had. Couldn’t happen in a nicer place than Paradise Lane. – Janet & Derek ❤︎
Nick Viani: A true Renaissance Man! The arts, the music, the open-mindedness and the eye for the natural world…. Our favorite side of Nick though is his eternal patience explaining the rules of Dominoes every time we get together to play….and sometimes he even lets us win. We love you, Nick! Happy 70th Birthday and many more!!! – Mark and Inge ❤︎
My reminiscence is that Nick was always game. If my sisters and I were going to a Renaissance Faire, Nick was totally willing to put on tights. Love, Cyn ❤︎
I love him for his joy in sharing the discoveries that bring him joy, and the many other ways he is so generous to friends like us. – John & Susan ❤︎
Nick Viani- accomplished, patient, gentle. Nick’s presence is always reassuring, positive, calming even. He brings a patient understanding to every task and individual he faces. He is a teacher first and foremost- encouraging, guiding and supporting.
A memory: The 6th grade bicycle trip at Canadian Academy was the highlight of the year’s events. Nick planned routes, accommodations and meals and would not be thwarted by the handful of students who had never been on a bike. This was a class trip and no individual would be left behind. He designed a system by which non-riders could mount a bicycle and be held in balance by a rope attached to the frame. Learners would ride in a circle with Nick at the center holding bicycle and cyclist stable as they traced an arc on the school field.
We continue to learn from Nick each time we visit Ashland. We hope he continues to flourish. – Rick and Julie ❤︎
I love Nick for so many reasons: his epic patience when we were squeaking our dueling pogo sticks for weeks, his kindness and genuine concern about every single computer issue the Hunter family has ever faced, his cheerfulness in the kitchen as he brews espresso in his tiny pot and how he always bravely tries — yet always fails — to conquer the curse of “Viani time.” Love you, Nick! – Jenny ❤︎
I love you for your respect and appreciation for family history and ancestry. I have developed more value and interest in family ties, culture, history, and generational stories from your research and archiving.
I remember sitting next to Uncle Nick at the Hatcher house when I was really young. We were playing a game that was educational and helped teach addition etc. and I remember being very excited because he was so enthusiastic about right answers! It was so fun for me and I really thought I was a hot shot! It makes me smile and laugh as I remember!
Another great memory is when I was visiting in Oregon and Nick had a really nice, cool BMW. We went for a drive around town. We came to a stop, and when it was time to go again, Nick opened it up a bit. We accelerated really quickly and I remember being sucked into the seat! Greatest part was when Nick stopped accelerating when he reached the speed limit, maybe 45 or so, and said, “See, this is not an exhibition of speed, I am simply accelerating to the speed limit.” (I may have butchered the end of the quote) I was still pretty young and thought it was so fun and cool! When I think about Nick, I see that warm smile and think about his very gentle, loving, easy-going personality. Lots of love, Mark ❤︎
I love Nick’s love & appreciation of music and his adventuresome spirit!! – Karen H. ❤︎
To a man whose out of-this-world reputation precedes him, by way of his ball of glowing, goofy, and gorgeous pizazz daughter, Alicia — Happy 70th! Now that I’ve heard how great Nick Viani has been over the 70 years, I look forward to writing some first-hand tales when 80 roles around! – Jeff C. ❤︎
When Christopher was sick, Nick asked, “What can I do to help”. We asked him to come and stay with Christopher while we went to a convention Jim had to attend. He came unquestioning and lovingly. I am eternally grateful.
We have thoroughly enjoyed traveling and exploring Breckenridge, Colorado, San Francisco, Northern California, Oregon, New York, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania and Florida. We have so many happy memories of our visits and travels. – Carol ❤︎
I’ve never known a happier person. He has always a happy heart, happy voice and a happy hug. Some people say a person has an “old soul;” Nick has a happy soul and he shares it with all! We love him and are so happy he is our neighbor! – Pat and Gregg ❤︎
Dear Nick: I’ve been contemplating your upcoming 70th birthday celebration and the many reasons you are loved. I could say many things but the one reason that stands out in my mind is your love of family expressed in words and actions over the years.
I remember with fondness holidays spent at the Viani home playing bocce ball and listening to the music of the Kingston Trio and Fred Neil in your bedroom. Even though I was younger and very immature, you were always a gracious host. Your thoughtfulness was greatly appreciated.
When my mother passed away I was very appreciative when you and Sooney said you were coming down to attend her celebration of life. The fact that you would take time out of your busy schedule and drive all that way to support family at that difficult time speaks to your kindness and compassion.
During Julie’s illness you were there demonstrating your love for her. I also witnessed a love for your nephews and desire to help them in any way you could after her passing.
Your love for family has also been reflected in your interest in family history, both on the Viani and Metrovitsch sides and your desire to contact and establish relationships with your Italian relatives.
Then there is the special love you have for Sooney and Alicia as you’ve traveled to many places in the world together and continue to do things together as a family.
Nick, I congratulate you on 70 years of a life well lived and wish you many healthy and happy years to come. Your MUCH YOUNGER cousin, :=) – Paul ❤︎
I first met Nick in Pasadena when he stopped by a crafts fair where my friend and photographer Jim Jenkins and I were showing our work (1974). Nick’s response to our photos and my visit a few days later to his gallery/apartment connected us forever. Nick’s special way of making everyone he meets important by his genuine interest in their lives and the ability to capture that with his camera is a gift we have been lucky to receive. Love you and Happy Birthday. – Peter ❤︎
One morning in 1976, Nick, Peter and I had breakfast together and then spent the entire day – the entire day, drinking and playing every game you could think of at Nick’s round dining room table. We played Ma Jong, dominoes, bridge and whist, and maybe even a few games we made up. Every visitor was incorporated into whatever game we were playing and several folks came and went. At the end of “game day,” I knew that I needed to know this person forever. Just to maintain my game. Happy Birthday Game Man! – Lee ❤︎
If I had replied on time, your dad is the most devoted, loving, and supportive fatherly music fan ever! And he is as interested in the people around him as anyone I’ve met. Love you, Nick. Happy birthday. – Noah ❤︎
Thank you Nick for being my ever available computer mentor for so many years while I was teaching and also afterwards. You generously share new little tricks on our computers or phones. In fact you were to the first to share selfies with me—remember our hike at Hickison Camp in May 08? This might have been my first experience with selfies! You’re always so patient and have several ways to help me solve the situation. Your work introducing teachers your Write Site was also invaluable. Think of how many kids enjoyed writing more with this tool. My sister Julia, as you know was a big user of it. She loved it! Many thanks for contributing so much to our world. We’re looking forward to more adventures with you and Sooney! Hugs and love, Barbara ❤︎
Best neighbors I’ve ever had, the Nick & Sooney team. And “back in the day” Nick was my Mac go-to guy with his ever-patient presence, sitting with my iMac, loading whatever it was he thought I needed and explaining everything to me. Thanks, Nick, for steering me into Apple land.
But my MOST fond (and fun) memory of Nick was in the wee hours of January 1, 2000. We had brought in the new millennium at their house, and Nick the DJ was haven fun with old vinyls. There may have been alcohol around. Sometime after midnight, I looked around the room and asked, “Where’s Nick?” And then I saw his feet sticking out from behind the couch (near the record player, no doubt.) Sure enough, there was Nick, passed out on the floor. (Don’t think that happens much). Ahh, such a way to bring in the New Year/millennium.
Love ya, Nick, Laurie ❤︎