The last thing I remember before the virus took hold, I was standing on stage at the Rex Theatre with a herd of others, belting out the chorus to the Rolling Stones “Satisfaction” during the encore.
It was a deliriously fun night, mad with talent, true commanders of the stage — The Hats, WKW, The Rippin E Brakes and Oddfellow Way — each band simultaneously delivered their own brand of British rocking blues and left the place humming. Incredible, all of you. Really.
One of my favorite things to do is recap a week later with some of the boys down at the club, get their thoughts on the show, see if the night left a mark or not. We all love downing a few and digging into the past, once the smoke clears, of course. We measure the pluses and minuses of the evening and then start planning our next conquest. Nothing else to do.
But then, bang, a day or so after the Stones tribute show, the world is consumed with this invisible thing called The Coronavirus and it’s gunning for all of us. Well, that type of news will stifle any sense of glory. The Stones show could have taken place 100 years ago now. It’s gone, eaten away by the footprints of the pandemic.
Worst part is, I haven’t seen any of the musicians that played that evening since. Maybe one, but he’s just a good dude. I see the musicians perform on Facebook, doing their live feed shows and they’re all so good. I’ve been lucky enough to witness on a weekly basis that kind of intimacy, that level of untangled rawness dug down deep. Such power in their passion. Thank you for being you. All of you.
Now, the weeks go by and it is what it is. A new beginning, the “New Normal.” A much-needed trimming of the fat maybe. The bloat we’ve carried for two decades has finally had its say. We’ve gorged our faces, stuffed our guts, seduced our egos, and none of us are innocent of this profound sense of neediness. The phone, the posts, the face grabs, the mangled, manicured pool-side toe shots, the texts, the updates. Now! Now! Now! I Want It Now! That constant in-your-face means of communication — high in volume, low in substance — well, it bit back and left teeth marks.
A warning shot from the Gods? A return to a time when less meant more?
And if it was a warning shot from a higher God, I pray he finds a place in heaven for all — heathen or not — the people that died alone, scared, distressed and breathless due to the virus. Deliver peace upon their families who couldn’t hold their loved ones’ hand as they perished. They will suffer forever no doubt, ill or not, by the pile of angry tears the virus left in its wake.
In short, we’ve been running too hot, world wide. Now, we’ve been silenced.
For now. But not forever.
Reach Rob Azevedo at firstname.lastname@example.org