Nothing kills a vacation day like the death of your childhood idol quickly followed by a Pap smear.
I took a day off today to relax. But because I rarely plan anything other than partying and going to rock shows, I forgot that I’d also scheduled my annual OB GYN appointment in the afternoon. Then Prince died. What a wretched waste of a perfectly good vacation day.
A few facts about me:
- I loathe going to the doctors. I was FOUR years overdue for this annual appointment, the possibility of having to give blood outweighs any reasoning and I neglect physicals, podiatrists and anyone with a white coat.
- I love music like most people love their animals.
Prince was one of those loves for me. I went to see him in concert as an adolescent and it was a life-altering experience. I was an awkward Catholic kid covered with freckles and dysfunction in a rural Massachusetts town, I had to find my own escapes and Prince delivered on that evening. I learned about sex from watching “Purple Rain.” I watched the movie so many times that I can still recite the whole damned thing. I know because I’m doing it right now.
These days hit me hard. Maybe it’s the taste of my own mortality, or perhaps it’s that I am so in love with myself at that age. I love that little me more than I can communicate. I see the promise, the intellect, the creativity and I can smell the looming derailment. It’s tricky terrain in there, like the wart on my foot that I just can’t stop digging at, I want to get to the root and pull it out to marvel at its bloody splendor.
That’s what nostalgia really is, it’s not truly about the person or thing that we loved so much, it’s more about missing ourselves at that age. It’s been a LONG time since I’ve purchased new Prince music, but it doesn’t matter, I love him for who he was and more importantly, who I was when he touched me.
Here’s to Prince, the pop icon that always stayed cool. While poor Madonna engages in a tacky custody battle for the world to see, and Cyndi Lauper disappears into “Kinky Boots” land, Prince never lost a shred of authenticity. Rest in peace, Prince.
And make your annual OB GYN appointment- the stirrups are less uncomfortable than I remember.