So in the last week, I was nominated for two awards by Jamie and Ramona. Thank you both! It’s nice to be recognized by the folks who visit and read and listen to my slightly crazy jukebox. I’m gonna be a bad girl and not nominate any other bloggers for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award and the Blog Award for Unusual Excellence. Not because I don’t think any of my fellow bloggers are very inspiring or unusually excellent; they’re all fantastic. I just know that some of my faves have either received these awards or don’t accept them. I might change my mind by the end of this post, but please don’t hold your breath.
In honor of their kindness, I am dedicating today’s Freak Friday post to Jamie and Ramona. (Visit their blogs if you haven’t already, because you won’t be sorry.) And who is their freak for the day? One of my all-time favorite freaks, of course: Syd Barrett.
Syd was one of the founders of Pink Floyd. He sang, played guitar, and wrote songs. He also did a lot of acid and other psychedelic drugs. It was the height of the psychedelic period, after all. Everyone who was anyone was altering their minds a la Timothy Leary. Unfortunately, Syd altered his mind permanently, and he went certifiably nuts.
To be fair, Syd was never officially diagnosed, but many have speculated that his emotional and mental problems were triggered in part by his heavy use of psychedelics. He began behaving erratically, and left Pink Floyd in 1968. He had a brief solo career, releasing The Madcap Laughs and Barrett in 1970. And then he just retreated from the public eye in the early 70s. He would make the occasional appearance on stage for a friend. He moved back to Oxford, and painted. He lived a quiet life until he passed away in 2006 at the age of 60.
I’m not a big fan of psychedelia for the most part, probably because I don’t do the genre-related drugs, but Syd Barrett was different. Syd had something special going on in his head. It always makes me sad that his fascinatingly weird music doesn’t get more attention, and that his career was cut short by illness and/or drugs. He was a freak, all right, but he was my kind of freak, happily surreal and nonsensical.
As part of my award acceptance, Jamie would like to know seven random facts about me, and Ramona would like me to answer some questions. I am again going to be a little bad and combine the two. So Jamie, you’re getting a bonus fact, because Ramona lists eight questions for me to answer.
- What is one thing you haven’t done yet, but you would like to do? I’d like to attend Wimbledon. I love tennis, I love England. Why not combine the two?
- If you could have any super power ability, what would it be? The power to make people see what dumbasses they really are.
- What is your favorite TV show and why? Depends on my mood, really. But I’ll say M*A*S*H. I can watch that show pretty much endlessly, and it never gets old.
- What is the song that isn’t on your I-pod, but when it comes on the radio, you turn it up and know all the words? I have 5,317 songs on my iPod. Anything I’m gonna turn up on the radio is already there.
- What is the one book you recommend most to your friends? A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving. It is the single best novel about faith that I have ever read. Come to think of it, it’s one of the best novels I’ve ever read, period. Second place, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert Pirsig. That book changed my life, literally.
- Are you doing what you love? Not for money.
- What to do you do when you need to find peace or serenity? I put on some music. If I need real peace and serenity, I make it the Beatles or John Lennon solo.
- If you could trade places with one person for one month, who would it be? The Dalai Lama. I would like to know what true peace and enlightenment feels like.