Lou Reed, Remembered.

Listening to a documentary on Lou Reed. He was living large downtown while I was growing up in a jungle. I felt myself come alive watching the doc. Even Lou couldn’t contain Himself. His week was our year; his fate was our oblivion.

I’ll tell you: we don’t learn from history because there is no history, just being there. You can steal a man’s shoes and walk that mile, but you will never make the leaps that man would make. Tomorrow eats today.

You think you know things; you can’t help it because we all do it. The evidence beats you pretty badly in the beginning. But you learn what to wear if it works for you; you know when you’re outside of it all, when the piano is out of tune or how to make birch twigs out of credit cards. It can all be done. It can all be done.

Lou, did not lead. He didn’t live his dreams, not like you think, if you think about him at all. He was as tempted by them as you were; walking on the wild side isn’t wild when it’s your only road. It’s just walking, all strange and foul, but you learn: none of it is fair, all shoes serve the same purpose, and, yeah, it does take nothing but courage to live your own life. Fear is, as it turns out, the mind killer after all. Courage? It’s just putting one foot in front of the other long enough to arrive.

Because it’s not that they aren’t walking a mile in your shoes. They aren’t walking at all, not on the wild side or the sunny side.

Not that it’s wrong to sit on the porch in the evening, and watch the parade. It’s just…lazy. We all do it. We can’t help it. And yet: Lou would coax you out. He would. Just do what you love, and even the porch, in the evening, can be as wild as spring.

One thought on “Lou Reed, Remembered.

  1. Lovely tribute Ron. I’ve been thinking about this death a lot. It’s strange, because I really only own one VU album and was only peripherally aware of a lot of what Lou Reed did, but since his passing I’ve learned a lot more from the tributes of others, and I really feel like an era is passing.


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