Today, it will probably remain in my memory as one of the most bizarre, surreal and sad days of my life.
I'm one of the many many fans that Bowie had. This morning I woke up had my coffee while reading the news and instantly the shock, disbelief and the tears, then I woke up my husband and told him the news while crying, and simultaneously the messages from friends and family and the irreversibility of the fact, coming in in the modern shape of tweets and facebook posts. Bowie had died, as if that was ever possible in our heads! He was an alien visiting, he was an icon, he was extraordinary and none of those move in the realms of mortality ever.
Not knowing what to do with myself and my sadness, and since I live near Brixton by chance, fate or unconscious decisions, I've decided after I've dropped my son to school to go down to his mural to leave flowers, there were already some there, but also there was an eager press to interview me, as most of the fans were rushing off to work. At that point I had just realised that I had no memory left on my phone to take a picture, so I've thought it made some strange universal sense to an upset fan like me to have the chance to publicly share my feelings, and it also meant that the press was providing me in return with a great graphic memento for me and my 4 year old daughter who was there with me holding my hand.
The thing is at that point I was trying to repress my emotions as I couldn't believe how upset I was for someone I didn't know, and I have never understood and even found slightly embarrasing such feelings in others. And yet this morning I was grieving, I was crying and I was trying really hard to pass on to the press or to anyone out there who wasn't as lucky as me to have lived through Bowie's music, why he mattered so much, why this was such an important moment. I didn't want to show my emotions during the interviews , but Bowie matter a great deal to me.
Here are some of the things I've learned from Bowie and why I find tragic that an icon, my icon is gone:
1. That looking completely weird was not only OK but amazing
2. That reinventing ones self , failing and restarting it was a way of living
3. That life is there to be experienced and experimented with
4. That sexuality is a fluid concept
5. That one is forever learning
6. That art and business can go together without having to become a souless exercise
7. That my fucked up teeth were ok (he later changed them but he also had fucked up eyes!)
8. That coolness, charm and elegance are ageless
9. That one should wear whatever the fuck he/she wants
10. That one must know how to die as well as know how to live
We needed Bowie, we needed someone to tell us that we could be heroes, just for one day
|Copyright: Laura Proto from The Evening Standard|