Anyway, this spring it turned out the lead singer of the Hip, WHO IS A LEGEND, has terminal brain cancer. Gord Downie is Canada's unofficial poet laureate. The band was going to do one last tour. I managed to score EXACTLY ONE ticket to a Toronto show. I went. It was amazing.
After petitions, our beloved national broadcaster, the CBC, said it was going to air the very last (albeit a miracle) Tragically Hip show from their hometown of Kingston Ontario.
That show was tonight and WHAT THE FUCK I'm more emotional than I was after the show I saw in person. I do not understand feelings.
I wrote a long rambling thing I was going to post for my high school friends' (Group of 9) Facebook Group but I decided it was embarrassing so I'm posting it here because in a a away, I want to remember these feelings. Forgive me.
Guys, I'm an emotional wreck after that Hip show. Who else watched it? (I know Joanna did.)
I think we ALL went to that Hip festival together in 1997. Am I right? I know MEL and I were in a car with Jonas and Mark W. She was being annoying by throwing pretzels around.
I remember so many shed parties and dancing (okay moshing) to New Orleans is Sinking. I remember when the Trouble At the Henhouse album came out and we'd drive around listening to Gift Shop and Ahead By A Century. I remember wide open blue country skies with white fluffy clouds and feeling that we were invincible and life would never change.
But then it did. I remember moving to the city and listening to Phantom Power and In Violet Light and saying about the Hip "it's not the band I hate, it's their fans." (Snobby Sloan lyric.) I listened to those songs so much as I did my best not to fail out of U of T.
I remember studying, studying, studying but then taking a break to see Gord play a solo set at Yonge-Dundas Square during the Coke Machine Glow era.
I remember seeing the Hip with new friends but still feeling connected to the past. I went to the most amazing Hip show for Canada Day 2012 with my friend Elisa (who is Vern's friend too now!). I remember Gord playing with the Sadies at the Field Trip music festival a couple of years ago and when he came out, so did the sun and my friend Matt from Winnipeg and I said that if Gord can't change the weather, no one can.
I would have never guessed that I'd be obsessively listening to the Hip again in 2016, more than 20 years since I discovered them. I took them for granted. I take a lot of things for granted. I suck at living in the moment. I don't think I have much courage. I need to work harder at boosting people up, especially myself. Art of all types has always been my solace. Where would I be without words, stories, and music? And I think that's why I've been so sad about the finality of this tour. I always thought I'd have access to these words and music that make me feel better, but I don't. I always thought there'd be another Hip show.
I just now want to to approach everything with courage and grace, too. And to remember that there is no dress rehearsal, this is real life and let's get friendship right, get life day-to-day.