Saturday, February 20, 2016

Sad times

People die all the time. It’s an integral part of life, but 2016 seems to have started off with a disproportionate number of prominent departures.

I was around in the 70s when David Bowie repeatedly unsettled the music scene with one tangential shift after another. Growing up in a house that revered classical, and recognized nothing more contemporary than the wartime big band sound, Bowie was a delightfully subversive influence in my younger years.

From the movie world, we mourned the untimely passing of one of my wife’s favorite actors, Alan Rickman. His dry, sardonic delivery made him an outstanding screen villain, but his characters were always deepened with touches of insane humor.

I suspect nobody this side of the Atlantic will have even heard of Terry Wogan, but he was a British institution and someone I remember with great fondness from radio and television.

Then, of course, I opened up my browser last night to the double whammy from the writing world - Harper Lee (To Kill a Mockingbird) and Umberto Eco (The Name of the Rose).

May they rest in peace, and may their work live on.


  1. Hi Ian - we seem to be in an era now ... but they've achieved and lived longish lives ...

    Not easy for us in their era .. cheers Hilary

  2. We've lost quite a bit of talent in recent days. Who will come along to replace them?

  3. Hilary, longish lives, for the most part. It's sad to lose childhood icons that seemed to be an enduring part of the world.

    Stephen, there's always been plenty of talent around, so I don't think there's much worry about that.

  4. Yes, I'm with you. So many deaths one on top of the other. So sad to see Harper Lee and Umberto Eco pass on. What institutions these people are!

  5. David Bowie's death hit me the hardest. Although I was only a baby in the 70s, I "discovered" his music in the late 80s/early 90s along with my now de facto favorite band, Queen. And my life was never the same again!

    So, yeah, that was a rough one.

  6. Denise, indeed.

    David, oddly enough, I think "Under Pressure" was one of my last memories of Bowie. After the heady days of New Wave, the 80s descended into tameness and I stopped listening to popular music so much.

  7. I'm thankful that I did get to see Bowie in concert years ago.

    This does seem to be the year of prominate deaths. I'm not looking forward to seeing what the rest of the year brings at this rate.

  8. That must have been a fabulous experience, Jean. I'm jealous :)

  9. Deaths seem to happen in seasons. Any time we've had a family death, its been followed by a couple more in the same calendar year. Truthfully though, I don't see death an awful thing. It's a release and when it comes unexpectedly, it's a reminder that there's a whole ton of life to be lived by those who remain.


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