Friday, April 8, 2011

My memory is quite horrible when it comes to events, to things I did. I remember specific dates (birthdays, anniversaries, deaths), but not much else. It's always been this way with me. Older generations will remember when James Dean or Elvis died. I remember when River Phoenix and Kurt Cobain died (and for some reason when Brandon Lee died). It's been 17 years since Cobain's body was found. I was in 11th grade, on a field trip to visit a local university. It was before Twitter, it was before texting - you still heard news on the radio or television or by word of mouth. News travelled fast but not at light speed. You could hear something and still doubt it until it was confirmed by a newscast of some sort - you did not rush home and Google it only to find 10,000 stories had already hit the web confirming it. That's all I actually remember though - I think, because we were on a field trip and therefore "out of touch" for most of the day, we did not get an inkling that our Kurt was dead until the big yellow bus ride home, and even then, it was word of mouth to be doubted, it was unbelievable and needed to be confirmed, it had to be a bad joke.
Of course, it was real, it was confirmed. I know I cried, I know I wrote overdramatic why why why poems. I know I wore all black for at least a week, but no one noticed because I generally wore a lot of black anyway. I know my heart wrenched when Courtney broadcast his note on TV a few days later. Already dark, depressed, disillusioned and at sea, this event impacted me. I was not a crazy Cobain fan, but Nirvana was one of my favourite bands at the time (but I've always preferred Eddie and Pearl Jam), I suppose a big part of it was I was just 17 and Kurt was ours and grunge was ours and it was dead and bad things happen.
Would he still be making music now had he lived? I don't know, but I do know I fucking cringe when I hear the Foo Fighters on the radio. What is is and can't be changed (at least not in this universe), his music and self impacted my life and it's been 17 years and it still makes me sad if I think about it.
It's been 17 years, and the 25 year old who sits next to me at work does not know what Nirvana is or who Kurt was and doesn't care.


Alli said...

17 years. Wow. I also remember hearing the news on the radio and I remember being so devastated. After reading "Heavier Than Heaven" it all came back. Such a waste of an amazing talent. I think that if he was alive he would have retired from the lime light by now, I like to think of him in a cabin in the woods just jamming and drawing and doing his own thing.