When I pass, speak freely of my shortcomings and my flaws. Learn from them, for I’ll have no ego to injure.
Aaron McGruder, Boondocks, 07-04-04
The anti-barbarian intellectual will be an artist…for only the poet, the painter and the musician know how to name evil and fish for its bloody pearls. ~ Bernard Levy, Barbarism with a Human Face.
At Mr T’s Bowl with Shane (RIP), Hudley and Falling James a few years ago. Picture by Bob Cantu
I have had the privilege of collaborating with some amazing individuals in my time. Believe it or not real rebels. I have chosen three individuals to light a candle for the Day of The Dead.
The first candle to be lit is for my mom. She was a creative individual who did not fit the normal mother mold. She was an excellent cook. She was highly creative with her hands. She nurtured her children’s wild and creative side. Her skill as a mother is what made her unique and beautiful.
The second candle to be lit is for Darby Crash. He represents the real wild side of individuation. He is the building block for so many in the underground music scene today.
The last candle to be lit will be for Shane Williams, also known as the Rock & Roll bank robber. His expertise was as a music critic. Shane was a talented writer; He had the big ear for Rock & Roll.
The letter included in this post was originally published in Los Angeles Flipside Fanzine number 36, known as the Vandals issue (cover picture by Ed Colver).
This is the first letter Flipside received from Shane. It was the beginning of a beautiful friendship that lasted for over thirty years.
RIP Shane Williams
Celebrating a Flipside reunion a few years back. Photo by Bob Cantu
If you cannot get rid of the family skeleton, you may as well make it dance. – G.B. Shaw
My brother called to tell me mom passed. There were few tears to shed. A year before I shed my tears knowing that this day would come soon enough. Giving birth and waiting for death are so much alike in their ways. One waits and endures through the pain while caught in the eternity of this waiting. It passes. Human beings are born and then they die.
The funeral director was called by phone to come and receive my mother’s body in death. They arrived quickly. A gurney was brought into the house. The man asked if my father and I would like to join my brother downstairs.
“Many family members find it hard to witness their loved-one’s bodies being placed on a gurney.”
My father and I stayed. I watched as the mortician picked my mother up as a bride over the threshold. Her body hung down lifeless. A vivid image of Christ on the cross came to mind. Then she was placed on the purest white sheet I ever saw. Then they wrapped it round her. She was the center of a beautiful white Lilly. My father bent over and kissed her, I followed and kissed her, and he followed again. Then she was gone.