This has been an interesting start to the week. On the one hand, everything for Jimmy is new, and it is exciting to see him starting something different. On the other hand, much of yesterday was filled with nostalgia as so many of my peers and online friends mourned the death of a star. It has been intriguing to say the least.
Today is really Jimmy’s first day at the new school. They have a very interesting approach. The first 2 weeks they want the kids to come to a classroom two days a week to really get started. Which I think is a good thing. And then tomorrow will really be his first real day of working from home. I think I am more excited by it all than he is.
In many ways it was good that I did not grow up with the internet the way my kids are. I did develop some social skills, and develop some long term friendships, and have a large and varied set of great memories from school to fall back on. And treasure the time I spent playing outside in the dirt with my buddies, and eventually time in libraries reading about new worlds. I was lucky to have parents who had the ability to send me to a great school where I was able to build a suitable niche.
On the other hand, when I see the options my kids have, especially when it comes to education, I do get a little jealous. Because if that option had been available to me when I was young I would have jumped all over it. The ability to learn on my own to some extent. To pace my learning. And most of all to be alone while I worked was something that I managed to carve out but would be so much easier today.
On to a different topic. I rarely mourn when a star dies, especially the ones who have lived full lives. There is a certain amount of sadness that we will not see any more of that person or new creations from them. But again, for the most part, they have lived full lives, and seen or done far more in that time than most of us ever will. And now they are one with the Force or Cosmos or whatever, so my mourning will do little.
But, the death of David Bowie is unique. Not so much personally, I liked his music, he was an extraordinary artist. And one of the first record albums that I called my own was The Man Who Sold the World. The interesting thing to me was how his death affected so many of my friends, especially those that I grew up with. There was something about his music and art, and the time in which it became available, that really connected with a certain group of people. Not everyone liked Bowie, at least at the time. But those of us who did, who dived deep into his catalog, felt like we were part of a special club. And when I look at all of those people now, who spent much of the day posting links about him or of his songs, it was definitely a certain type. I could use some generic labels for that type, but there is no reason. Suffice to say that for those people his music and art made life seem better in many ways. And not every artist can claim that. Again it was like being a Bowie fan made you special.
That’s what this week has been: a mix of excitement for the future and memories of a great childhood. It is neither good or bad, it just is, like life. A mixed bag, with lots to think about, and reminding us to cherish our time here in this life.