Okay, I know. June 2nd. Last update was in April. April 21st. I know that without even looking it up. Why? Because a thing happened. Well, a couple things happened.
I was having arm surgery. My second arm surgery in as many weeks.
Arm Surgery 2: The Reckoning.
The Reckoning? I dunno, sometimes I just type stuff. I RECKON that damned surgery then led to a thing called DVT. That’s what the medical types call it. Deep Vein Thrombosis. Us non medical types who are dealing with it call it Big Freaking Blood Clots Deep In My Arm And Shoulder That Hurt Like A Son-Of-A-Bitch.™
So, yeah. Blood clots. Sweet. That’s new. Too close to my lungs and heart and stuff, so the doctors didn’t like the whole thing. That leads to injections of stuff and blood thinner pills and people going “Wow that’s a lotta bruising!” and me using profanity. Oh, who are we kidding, it doesn’t take much for me to use profanity.
All of that is solvable. And is being solved. Over the next several months with an amazing blood-thinning drug called Coumadin. SCIENCE!! Just don’t cut me, because there will be NO COAGULATING IN THIS HOUSE. I’m like a wild mountain stream, running free. YOU CAN’T STAUNCH ME!
The other thing that happened, though. Man oh man. After I woke up from Arm Surgery 2: ReArmed And Dangerous, on the drive home, my wonderful wife Jeanne broke the news to me that while I was in surgery, Prince had died.
Well. If you know me, or read this blog, you know I’m a big Prince fan. I mean, I’m only 5’3″, but inside I’m a GIANT Prince fan. I have every studio album he’s released (I think it’s 39, at last count?), plus a lot of B-sides, extended singles, remixes, collaborations, a few bootlegs, some vinyl interview discs… I had the immense privilege of seeing him in concert 7 times – mostly in Michigan, but once in Chicago and once in London. Earlier this year I had one of those little moments of pure unadulterated giddy pace-around-the-house-for-30-minutes saying “Holy Shit” over and over kind of moments when Prince himself, on Twitter, re-tweeted my tweet about how much I loved one of the songs from his newest album and he added “I love Tony Caselli”.
I’m just so sad that he’s passed. I spent weeks after that day dealing with arm stuff and medications and feeling lousy from that AND processing the loss of this inspiring force in my life… it was a weird few weeks. And today, unfortunately, the reports confirmed that it was from an overdose of pain medication that he’d become addicted to because of the pain from his hip injuries. Dammit. It feels silly to say that every time I went to write a blog post, I knew I had to say something about Prince, and for weeks I just couldn’t say it, but it’s true. I didn’t know him, I never met him. He retweeted me once. Once, in the second row of the Musicology concert tour, his sweat flew the 10 feet from the stage and landed on my sister and I. That or someone dancing nearby spilled their drink, but I’m going with the sweat, because it happened just as he was spinning like a purple dervish right in front of us. Musicology.
So much music. So much talent. A short guy, like me, who just did his own thing and inspired all the rest of us 5 foot 3 guys. I mean, his music has been in my life since I was an early teenager. His amazing music, and his stuff that made me go “Okay, cool. I’m with ya. Not my favorite, but I’ll be back for what’s next”. It spoke to me. It made me dance, and think, and groove, and it’s been that way for decades. I just assumed that in my retirement home, the ones my kids will put me into in 25 or 30 years because I’m just too damned annoying, that I’d be enjoying a nice 4pm dinner of soup and listening to the newest Prince album over and over. Year after year.
Who is going to write the soundtrack to my life now?
So, I don’t know. Life. Aging. My dad died at 68. Prince died at 57. Blood clots coming 2 years after a stupid coma that nearly killed me at 45. Somewhere in there is a whole deep well of thinking and processing about life, and living it to the fullest, and fear of leaving my wife and kids behind, and gratefulness for the amazing life I’ve lived so far. It’s all there, and articulating it is something that may happen later. Right now, though, I just want to listen to my whole Prince collection, on shuffle.
“Don’t stop. Nothing ever comes from fear.” – Prince, Rock-n-Roll Love Affair