Tuesday, January 12, 2016

We Can Be Heroes

Now Playing: David Bowie - Lazarus and When the World Falls Down

About two months ago, someone on Reddit linked to a website called What did Bowie do at your age? 

It's Exactly What It Says on the Tin. Basically, you put your age in, the website tells you what Bowie was doing at said age, and you wait for the feelings of admiration and inadequacy and love to hit you.

Mine, right now.
 Some others:

When I got linked, I spent a good couple of minutes on the website, wishing to one day accomplish half as much as Bowie had accomplished in a single year of his life. I can say with confidence it isn't rooted in jealousy, but admiration. It's always that way with great artists.

The site was acting wonky yesterday, and for good reason. So many must have been visiting it after hearing the news of David Bowie's passing on January 9th.

My dad told me in the car early Monday morning.

I had to ask him to repeat himself about five times because I couldn't quite believe it. Maybe it's always silly to get upset over hearing a celebrity's passing, but however "illogical" it might be, it's no less painful. I wrote to a great deal of his songs. Some of my favorite movies use his music to some extent (The Perks of Being A Wallflower and The Inglourious Basterds), or have him as an actor (The Prestige), or both (Labyrinth, of course).

It's difficult to pin point what makes an artist great. Music is especially baffling to me. I can analyze and understand, objectively or subjectively, why a particular movie or book can appeal to hundreds of people. But I have no idea with music. I don't comprehend it enough to decipher a song or its singer.

All I know is what made an impact with me. What I care about and what will always stick with me. And I know Bowie's music will be known and celebrated for years to come.

And I know this is one of his most well-known songs, but I love it too much not to link to it.

Heroes, one of my favorite Bowie songs.

The live version is the one I heard first, and I still have a lot of nostalgia and love for it:

I, I will be king 
And you, you will be queen 
Though nothing, will drive them away 
We can beat them, just for one day 
We can be heroes, just for one day. 
And you, you can be mean 
And I, I'll drink all the time 
'Cause we're lovers, and that is a fact 
Yes we're lovers, and that is that  
Though nothing, will keep us together 
We could steal time, just for one day 
We can be heroes, forever and ever 
What'd you say?  
I, I wish you could swim 
Like the dolphins, like dolphins can swim 
Though nothing, nothing will keep us together 
We can beat them, forever and ever 
Oh we can be heroes, just for one day. 
I, I will be king 
And you, you will be queen 
Though nothing will drive them away 
We can be heroes, just for one day 
We can be us, just for one day. 
I, I can remember (I remember)
Standing, by the wall (by the wall)
And the guns, shot above our heads (over our heads)
And we kissed, as though nothing could fall (nothing could fall)
And the shame, was on the other side
Oh we can beat them, forever and ever
Then we could be heroes, just for one day. 
We can be heroes
We can be heroes
We can be heroes
Just for one day
We can be heroes. 
We're nothing, and nothing will help us
Maybe we're lying, then you better not stay
But we could be safer, just for one day
Oh-oh-oh-ohh, oh-oh-oh-ohh, just for one day

Rest in peace, David Bowie. Ziggy Stardust. The Goblin King. You and all the people you decided to be for us :D

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"Science and science fiction have done a kind of dance over the last century... The scientists make a finding. It inspires science fiction writers to write about it, and a host of young people read the science fiction and are excited, and inspired to become scientists...which they do, which then feeds again into another generation of science fiction and science..."
- Carl Sagan, in his message to future explorers of Mars.