Apr 2, 2005

love this life

"and don't you just love this life when it's holding you down?"

so, as I did some much needed house work this morning I decided to put on some crowded house
this might seem a dorky or strange thing to share for anyone who has not known me long, but anyone who knows me from college or before knows that I once had large love for split enz and crowded house
hell, I still do on some level, and I'm enjoying the hell out of it at them very moment, but honestly, I haven't really listened to the Finn's older creations in a good while

so why this nostaligc choice? well, as some might know, Paul Hester, drummer of crowded house and latter day split enz hung himself from a tree last weekend. He left late friday night to walk the dogs, was found saturday morning dead in a park.

I am not one to go on about celebrity death. I am sad when a beatle dies and I understand the strange personal touch of those who leave this world who were somewhat part of public domaine
but I am always aware that even if I FELT something, I never knew this person

however, a part of me has thought of this off and on since I read the news

Here's the thing: when I was in highschool I went to see crowded house play a show in Santa Barbara. I wasn't much of a fan yet and what I saw blew me away. They were incredible performers, but more than that they were amusing and strange and irreverent and probably deeply offensive to anyone who had a soft place in their heart for..say...the Lord's Prayer.
And after the show, in my youthful exuberance, climbing around the back of the theater I noticed them by the tour bus. They had announced that it was the last night of their tour and they were heading out to celebrate if anyone had cared to find where. I was spying to just this purpose, and decided to take a misguided leap down to where they stood from a second story balcony to say "hi"
By misguided, I mean, at a whopping 5ft2 this was a precarious jump. So my intendedly graceful landing was more of a dangerous plummet that damn near took Paul Hester out on the way down.
His only reaction "whoa! she's airborne! the girls come with wings around here, boys!"
He was incredibly nice, charming and dorky and oddly unnaffected by a flying girl.

Naturally, this memory stuck with me as part of the nostalgia of my youth, peppered and characterized by the music of crowded house streaming from my headphones time and again.

But one of the reasons I remained a fan was not my love of sweet pop music, but the humor so many of their songs held. This sense of the ridiculous and perverse that fleshed out the bittesweet and the hopeful. Many people believe this quality, this in your face, unself-conscious ribaldry was the spirt of Paul Hester.

What I took from this was that life, especially in your more self-indulgent days, is often saved and defined by our ability to find humor, even in moments that might seem most troubling. That, indeed, the ability to find light in the dark, bounce in the mud, shall we say, is what makes it go, and often go well.

So you can see why it would seem especially sad that and offputting that a person who symbolized such a notion, for me and for many, would choose to end his life, and in such a resolute and lonely way.

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