Honour the living…

Candye, me, Maritza & Teresa. Photo: Josef Roehrl

…join our Be Kind to the Living Club.

Lots of ill will toward 2016, many expressing relief at its impending demise. I came across an article that suggests blaming a year is like blaming God. Anthropomorphism certainly, but we have endured and lost more than most arbitrary passages of time including my dear friend Candye Kane. Yesterday I posted; “I wish people would pay tribute before someone dies,” and it has elicited quite a response. Paulette Turcotte suggested we should start a club. “What would we call it,” I replied, “Be Kind to the Living?” Alice Major said, “Well, we all need deadlines to get things done.” So funny, so true. I do find it hypocritical, and irritating, to watch people bash each other until one passes, when suddenly, he or she is a saint.

The discussion evolved into the types of send-offs we imagine upon reaching our expiry date. My inclination is to slip out quietly; have my body cremated and no funeral, or whatever they’re called these days. I won’t be there so what’s the point? If I leave any legacy it will be my son and perhaps some writings.

Stephen Roxborough reminded me that he produced an anthology devoted to bill bisset called Radiant Danse Uv Being. “An eclectic, energetic tribute to one of our most courageous and unconventional writers.” It is also beautiful and I was privileged to attend the launch, with bill and all his admirers. In fact, I had money then and purchased one of his “excellent” paintings which still illuminates my living room.

And as host, producer and musical director Mark Bignell pointed out, he honours our musical heroes on his CFRO Bandcouver show every week and female artists-including moi/AURAL Heather-on She-Boom!.

Then Jason Flower chimed in with, “I pay tribute to Heather Haley!” Yes! Jason and his record label, Supreme Echo are soon to release my first band the Zellots on vinyl. For two years we tried to track down the master tape of the demo, to no avail so wound up using a beat up old cassette I’d been carrying around for decades. Apparently his engineer “Josh of Octic Sound,” pulled off a miracle and managed to restore the songs. Designers are currently working hard to do the same with a gig poster and other printed materials. Better late than never. I’m so grateful and indeed feel appreciated.


4 thoughts on “Honour the living…

  1. You hit something here that I have said all my life which is that: I have always felt irritated by the phoniness inherent in funerals when people are suddenly made into saints. Really I think it would be far better if we were kinder to the living and part of this kindness would no doubt have to include seeing each other clearly and forgiving humans for their faults (unless those faults are monstrous). Yes, let’s be be kinder to the living. It has always made more sense to me than canonizing the dead. With you all the way, Heather. Thanks for this piece!

  2. Thanks for the shout out, Heather. Yes, let’s appreciate people when they’re still here. Yes, it’s natural to mourn those who have passed, but don’t get stuck there, always be open to something new. Yes, it’s sad all these people have passed this year ,but don’t get stuck in a time bubble and ignore new talent. There’s a lot of it out there. They may become your new favourites. Forget about the mainstream media, they have no clue. Go online, talk to your friends, explore whatever new music, ideas etc. they’re into. You may not always like what they’re into ,but it can open a door to something else you may like. Also, don’t hold grudges against people all your life. They’ve made mistakes and have done things that are not always honourable ,including moi, but it shouldn’t damn them for the rest of their life. They may want to make peace with you. Make peace with them. Life is too short not to make the best of it.

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