Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Itchy Spots, and Prince


I didn't mention that when Olga and I walked on the Heath on Sunday, she once again dropped her Kong toy into a deep, dark, leafy puddle. And once again I was forced to wade in and retrieve it, standing in the opaque water and feeling around with my hand.

I hate having to do that. I would never do it in Florida, where I grew up, because God only knows what could be living in a Floridian puddle. Here, at least, snakes are comparatively rare.

But after our walk, my ankles began itching, and sure enough I've been bitten -- on one leg particularly -- in five or six places. They could just be bites from mosquitoes or black gnats, or midges -- whatever those bugs are that gnaw on me in our back garden every year. But part of me wonders if I didn't pick something up in that puddle. I am resisting Googling "itchy spots bites puddle Hampstead Heath." I don't want to know.

In all the craziness of the past week or so, I also never mentioned Prince's death. I was not a huge fan. But I owned the "Purple Rain" album and there was a period in the early to mid-'80s when my girlfriend Barbara (this was a long time ago) and I spent many hours listening to it in her beige Dodge Omni. We went to see the "Purple Rain" movie -- a few times, I think -- and she adopted Apollonia's lacy gloves and dangly mismatched earrings. When I heard Prince had died, I thought immediately of Barbara and wrote to her on Facebook. It's strange to think we've lost another crucial element of the soundtrack of our lives.

I thought Ms. Moon said it best -- that like David Bowie, Prince "did not seem human. He transcended sex and race and gender and any sort of description. He was male/female. He was tiny, he was huge, he was a screamer, a whisperer, a musician who let loose the hounds of hell and the doves of peace."

His influence also reached into many corners of pop music in the '80s and afterwards. For example, most of us probably know that he wrote "Nothing Compares 2 U," Sinead O'Connor's huge hit. I just learned he also wrote "Manic Monday," which The Bangles made famous. And when Y2K rolled around, we literally partied like it was 1999, to that very song.

Oh, Lord. I feel old.

(Photo: Notting Hill, last week.)

11 comments:

Yorkshire Pudding said...

When I saw the title of this blogpost, I thought that "Itchy Spots" was an album by Prince Charles containing some of his more obscure songs such as "My Baby Gave me Chickenpox", "Urban Eczema" and "Sunburnt Skin".

e said...

Ditto, though I love the comment by Yorkshire Pudding above...

Marty Damon said...

I was chasing small children during much of Prince's reign, so never really felt his influence as those of your generation did. But music and its artists are one of the most concrete ways to mark the stages of our lives.

Ms. Moon said...

Thank you, Steve.
You probably got some sort of bug bites. Try not to google it. Cortisone cream?
And Barbara? You had a girlfriend named Barbara? Well, why not? We all have to figure things out. I mean...I MARRIED a guitar player.

utahDOG! said...

I was in a Publix supermarket on Sunday and they were playing Prince music only. Either stuff he recorded himself, or wrote and/or arranged and/or produced for others. It was awesome. You would be amazed what he had a hand in.

The Bug said...

So glad Dave is home & that life is relatively normal again for a few days. I was out of town for a funeral during most of the Prince hoopla - I might have to go back & check out some retrospectives.

ellen abbott said...

just goes to show we are all food for something. and yah Prince. I liked his music well enough but wasn't a big fan, like Marty I was chasing kids around and was too busy to pay attention to the music world. I do recognize though what an immense talent he was.

37paddington said...

Hello, Barbara! I know you're a fairly private guy in some respects but if you don't find it too intrusive I'd love to hear your coming out story.

Sharon Anck said...

I LOVE Ms. Moon's quote. My thoughts exactly only I could never had said so eloquently.
Hopefully, a little cortisone or Vaseline will stop that itching.

Red said...

I never listened to Prince but since he died I've heard his music and I like it.

jenny_o said...

The bugs are probably just starting to come out, and they breed in or near standing water, so I'd guess it is bug bites. You need one of those reacher things (also known as a grabber, probably has an official name too) that physio people give patients to reach/grab things on higher shelves or on the floor so they don't have to bend over or climb on a chair :) Here's a picture: https://physioneeds.biz/ez-grabber-26-reacher-stick.html And imagine that, it's called a grabber or reacher stick!!