Thursday, February 19, 2015

February 20

Tomorrow (tomorrow in my time zone, at least) would have been the 48th birthday of musician Kurt Cobain.

Oh, yes. "Irony." Mofo.
Yes, little Kurt Donald Cobain was born on February 20, 1967. As the lead singer/songwriter of Nirvana, he achieved massive financial and artistic success in the early 1990s.

So of course he killed himself on or about April 5, 1994.

Here's his dead fucking arm.
Back then I was not a huge Nirvana fan, although it was impossible to deny the cultural influence of the band circa 1991-1994. Did Nirvana redefine rock music for the last decade of the 20th century? Well, duh.

So when I heard that Cobain had taken the coward's way out, I was fucking angry. Really, rich, handsome, talented, culturally relevant Kurt Cobain? You couldn't think of any way to cope with your notoriety except shooting yourself in the face?

Well, fuck you.

In the early 1990s, I was about your age, struggling financially, floundering professionally, wondering what the hell I was going to do with my life.

It never once occurred to me to kill myself.

Or if it did, I shrugged it off, because what kind of asshole commits suicide rather than just figuring out what the hell to do?

And this is not in any way an indictment of people who struggle with depression, mental illness, etc.

But FUCK, how does a millionaire celebrity rock star not find a way to seek treatment for his depression?

Here's to those of us who are still here. Not because our lives are easy, but because they're hard, and we've found a way to take on the challenge. Even when it's difficult. Even when it hurts. Even if we're not millionaires and/or geniuses.

We rock.

Happy birthday, Kurt Donald Cobain.

Fuck you.


  1. I remember when I heard about his death. I was in the military, on a month long training exercise in California, attached to another company in our battalion. One of the girls I had become chummy with was visiting with her platoon sergeant and mentioned it. It was maybe 10 days later. I was a little sad. Suicide is shitty on both sides.

  2. I remember reading about Cobain's meeting with William S. Burroughs. Burroughs said, "That boy frowns for no good reason."

    It's hard for me to criticize anyone who commits suicide because I know it's what's going on internally rather than externally that makes the difference. Van Gogh didn't shoot himself because his paintings wouldn't sell. Not that Van Gogh and Cobain are comparable. If Van Gogh's paintings had sold then for even a fraction of what they're worth now maybe he could have gotten help.


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