I’ve wondered why certain celebrity deaths are bothering me more this year. I think it’s the loss of innocence as childhood icons are taken away, a part of childhood is taken away as well. It’s remembering a time when life was simpler, less complicated, and more carefree. And it’s a reminder of one’s own mortality, of how precious life is, of just how fleeting life is.
This post is one final goodbye from me; you will be missed.
I thought I could wait one year, but I was too close to cracking to make it another month, I finally requested a day off, but had to take it without pay.
Let me tell you about my day off; it was positively hedonistic. I woke up at my regular work day time. Got my makeup slathered on, had coffee and breakfast, then got out of my pajamas and into real clothes about 8:30. I know, I live dangerously. After 9:00, I got some cash for Comic Con the next day. No, I wasn’t walking into a store in full cosplay garb. After that, I stopped off at two different stores to buy groceries, then stopped to get a roll of quarters.
I got home about 11:30 and started the first of two loads of laundry. I did a little bit of cleaning, finished up a cosplay and watched two movies. I even got in a short nap.
I haven’t had a bona fide day off since April 2015 and I gotta say, not being pulled in 15 directions or having to try to answer a question I know nothing about, or fielding complaints, was absolutely blissful.
I will really miss that one day’s pay, but a day of relaxation was absolutely priceless.
Part of it is Prince’s death. I never knew the man, just his music, yet his death affected me harder than I would’ve thought. I was crying off and on from the time I heard about it until a few days after. It’s still hard to believe his musical genius isn’t on this earth anymore.
Part of it is changing careers. Don’t get me wrong, I’m excited at the prospect, but I’m at the start of making this change and it’s not going as fast as I want. Everything happens in due time, but patience isn’t one of my virtues.
I’m not getting any younger, if I would’ve had more faith in myself when I was younger, I’d be loving what I do, not dreading going to a job. But I’m not too old to change up what I do for a living.
Part of it is my weight. I’ve been at my job since last June and I’ve put on 15 pounds. Holy shitballs. I never step on a scale needlessly, but I had to when I had my concussion. I’d say the weight gain is a not-so-healthy brew of stress, hormones and eating (I admit, it could use some tweaks).
Another part – and you might think this is strange – is that the cosplay costumes I started a few months are almost done, Okay, correction, one is done, the other is almost done, it’s on its finishing touches.
You’re probably wondering why the last one would be leave me in a funk. For me, the creative process is exhilarating, it’s the fun part. The end product? Meh. It’s done, there’s nothing left to do.
For the last three months, my living room has been chaos. I moved two dining room chairs from my living room to put my sewing machine on one and accessories on the other. Half of the sofa had pattern pieces on it, another chair had pattern pieces on it and one corner of the living had a pile of fabric and sunglasses and wigs and a bunch of other crap bunched up in it.
Now, the floor is clear. The patterns are put away. The accessories are in boxes. The chairs are back in the dining room.
In other words, it doesn’t look like a tornado just blew through my apartment. But I do kinda miss the chaos just a little, because it means this is coming to an end. It actually feels a little sad.
I know I need to bring myself out of this, so last week during lunch at work, I made a list of what I can do next and a few things popped up.
One, finish the book cover. I had this on my list of to-dos, but once I realized how behind I was on the cosplay costumes, I went into panic mode and just focused on the costumes.
Two, explore another cosplay for Crypticon, a horror convention. Last year I went as Svengoolie and I might just again, but if I get bored at some point between now and October, I’ll put together another character.
Three, write a book. Why not? I have an idea in my head that’s been floating in my head for quite a while. It’s time to put in on paper and see what happens and how, or if, it gels. Might not work as a book, the story might fall apart, but if I don’t write it down, I won’t know. Even if it’s not published, I want to say I’ve done it.
Four, fitness. It’s not only good for the body, it’s good for the mind. A good ass-kicking workout is not only calming, it puts things in perspective.
The funk will pass, I know it will, I just want it be gone NOW. Like I said earlier, patience isn’t one of my virtues.
You need to know I never cry for any celeb. I post a rest in peace photo on Instagram and move on. But Prince was different. I spent the afternoon trying to wrap my head around why I cried and felt so sad.
I moved to Minneapolis to attend college, but it didn’t take long for me to fall in love with the city – and its music. The bands here were incredible – Hüsker Dü, The Replacements, The Suburbs, The Time and of course, Prince and the Revolution.
The Time and Prince and the Revolution were part of what was known as the ‘Minneapolis sound.’ The Minneapolis sound was a hybrid mixture of funk, rock, pop, synthpop and new wave. Prince pioneered this sound in the late 1970s, but it became very popular throughout the 1980s.
The first album of Prince and the Revolution’s I heard was 1999. I’d not heard anything like it; it was raunchy and filthy and I loved every minute of it. I almost felt guilty for loving his music, but I didn’t stop listening to it.
After 1999, came Purple Rain. The soundtrack and the movie and after the movie was released, everyone was crushing on Prince. Self included.
My favorite album of his is still Controversy. I’m listening to it as I write this post. And Do Me Baby just started. Oh yeah … it’s still fucking hot.
Prince was strangely and mysteriously sexy in an androgynous way. He influenced my dancing attire – I’d wear a tux shirt, tux jacket, bow tie, black hose and black heels. No pants. The shirt and jacket covered the girlie bits. And no, I’m not posting pictures, use your imagination. I’m so glad social media wasn’t even a glimmer in someone’s eye during that time.
Listening to different tracks this afternoon took me back to when his music became the music of my life. To a year where I hung with the same fun crowd. And to wonderfully hot, humid summer nights at our house – and house parties with same crowd dancing into the wee hours to Prince blasting on the stereo. To lusting over a guy named Pat who didn’t even know I existed. Spending every Friday and Saturday night at First Avenue dancing to his funky, hip-grinding songs. My favorite song to dance to was 1999; another favorite off the album 1999 is Automatic. And that summer was the first time I smoked pot.
It was probably one of the best – if not the best – summers of my life and Prince was my soundtrack. It just couldn’t have been better.
I still smile when I think about it. If I could relive any year over, it’d be that one.
I never met him, I never ran into him at a local sandwich shop. The closest I came to being in proximity to him was when I went to First Avenue on my birthday. My roommate was positively giddy and ran up to me and said “Prince is here! Prince is here! He’s really short!” I never did get a peek at the diminutive musician, but he had quite the effect on my roommate.
Brilliant. Eccentric. Enigmatic. A musical genius. That was Prince and so much more. There will never be another Prince and I feel so fortunate to have lived in the same generation as him.
Rest in peace doesn’t seem fitting for him, so I will say thank you Prince Rogers Nelson for bestowing the gift of your music on us – and thank you for all the memories made to your music. You will be sorely missed.
Today the doves cried.
So did I.
Prince singing Do Me, Baby - 01/30/82