I don’t know what it is lately but I haven’t been sleeping very much. It’s not caffeine because I’ve been too lazy to make a pot of coffee. And, my son won’t let me sleep in. As a result, I get three (maybe four) hours of sleep at night. So, I’ve been running on autopilot half the time. Definitely a bad habit that I can’t afford to keep. With a baby, you need all your faculties in order.
Nevertheless, I was up past 3 AM last night watching “Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten”. I wish I had gotten into The Clash more growing up. But, by the time I heard their music, they had already imploded. I had their album “The Story of The Clash, Vol. 1” that I would listen to over and over again. Notice how I said album. Yes, it was vinyl and I kick myself repeatedly for not hanging onto it.
I had the hugest crush on Joe Strummer. Still do (morbid because he’s gone). But because of him, I have always had a thing for tortured artists. Why is there that fine line between genius and insanity? I’ve never understood that. It’s like you can’t be mentally stable in order to create great art.
Alas, we will never get art from Joe anymore. It’s been seven years since his death. When it comes to rock stars, you think that they all go out in that proverbial blaze of glory. But, Joe died of a heart attack brought on by an undiagnosed congenital heart defect. When I heard that, I couldn’t believe it. It sounded so old – not befitting a punk rock warlord. And, he was taken away too soon. I believed that his best work was still to come. So not fair.
I guess we can always speculate what might have been if he had been properly diagnosed. But, that is ultimately self-defeating and pointless.
When our heroes and icons pass on, do we live our lives differently? What should we take away?
I’m not sure what brought this melancholic mood on. Maybe it’s because it’s winter. Maybe having children makes you contemplate mortality more. Who knows?
A good man is gone but his spirit lives on in those he inspired.