We Are All Children of Bowie


This may sound a little cold-hearted, but I’m rarely personally sad when a celebrity passes away. I mean, of course, I feel sadness and shock, and empathy for family and friends, and for people I know who were changed because of the impact the person had on them. That is, I feel a sense of loss in a communal sense, but perhaps not an intimately personal one.

This morning, I am deeply sad. I feel a loss.

When I was growing up in a small town, being different wasn’t generally a celebrated thing. When I showed up to school one day, my hair cut pixie-short and dyed black-blue, cat eye glasses, an anime tank top, army cargo pants 7 sizes too big, and knee-high lace up combat boots, needless to say I took a little flak.

It was at home, in the comfort of my bedroom, where the likes of David Bowie, Marc Bolan, Lou Reed, Elton John and a collection of other freaks taught me that it was not only okay to be different, but it was a joyfully real way to live.

It was the confidence to be myself, whoever and whatever changing being that was, and to bring people into my life who embraced that facet of life and living. “Let your freak flag fly” is not only a personal mantra, but it’s how I engage the world mindfully, parent my children, and meet the eccentricities of the world around me.

So as we bid farewell to the man who taught us to turn and face the strange, I wanted to share some of his words of wisdom, with gratitude for all the times he encouraged me to embrace the strangeness of myself.

Thank you, Mr. Bowie.

Ten David Bowie Quotations to Live By

  1. If it works, it’s out of date. 
  2. I don’t know where I’m going from here, but I promise it won’t be boring. 
  3. Tomorrow belongs to those who can hear it coming. 
  4. Once you lose that sense of wonder at being alive, you’re pretty much on the way out. 
  5. And I don’t care what anybody says; I like doing it, and it’s what I shall continue to do. 
  6. As you get older the questions come down to two or three. How long have I got and what am I gonna do with the time I’ve got left? 
  7. It’s always time to question what has become standard and established. 
  8. The truth is of course is that there is no journey. We are arriving and departing all at the same time. 
  9. And these children that you spit on as they try to change their worlds are immune to your consultations. They’re quite aware of what they’re going through. 
  10. I’m not a prophet or a stone aged man, just a mortal with potential of a superman. I’m living on.