There are some people you think will just live forever.
They are the timeless, larger-than-life characters, who have enough personality for multiple lifetimes.
This morning, my mom was the one who broke the news to me. “David Bowie’s dead,” she told me, and I sat up in my bed.
“Bowie??” She nodded, and I froze, my groggy mind struggling to understand. “Bowie? The Goblin King?”
She nodded again. “He passed away yesterday. They announced it this morning.”
I just blinked at her. My mind wasn’t grasping the concept that this wonderful artist was gone. In fact, I actually blurted out, “But he can’t die. His album just came out.”
When I was running this morning, it hit me that I’ve never lived in a world without David Bowie being around as a living legend. In fact, I can never remember a time where I didn’t know who David Bowie was.
I remember being a little girl and seeing him on TV, and, even then, being completely fascinated by him.
He’s one of the primary reasons I’ve wanted to be a filmmaker since I was seven years old.
I had watched Labyrinth and its Behind-The-Scenes features (on the VHS, mind you, so it came on automatically every time) for the thousandth time, and I was enchanted.
I had recently seen the Lord Of The Rings Two Towers behind-the-scenes for the first time, and between that and Labyrinth, I was mystified by the wonders of putting a film together.
But it was Bowie that truly brought it all to life for me.
There was something about this multi-talented artist that just had me floored, and made me want to be given space to test my own creativity.
When I had the chance, I started actively searching for his music, just to listen to songs other than the anthemic hit singles that had dominated the radio (“Changes,” “Heroes,” “Pressure,” etc.) or the tracks from Labyrinth that I had already memorized.
I found “Rebel Rebel” and “Starman,” and “I’m Afraid of Americans” became an anthem of sorts for me in high school. His discography is so expansive, and truly an event to journey through.
To hear about David Bowie’s death hit me in a similar vein that hearing about Robin Williams’ death did: it’s unimaginable, shocking, and feels very much like an old friend has passed.
I think, much like with Robin Williams, Bowie was such an integrated part of our popular culture, and so embedded into our lives, that it feels as though we all knew him on a personal level.
These were some of the thoughts that rolled around in my head throughout the morning.
But the overarching theme is that there will be no one like Bowie to grace this earth ever again. There will be no one who will enchant us in the same way, with his stunningly bold characters, wonderful storytelling ability, and pure talent.
Farewell to the Goblin King. Rest in peace David Bowie.