Why I Love Kurt Cobain

To be honest, that title just popped into my head. There was no serious amount of thought put into my feelings towards Kurt. I just said I loved him because, well, the world loved him.

I finished “Heavier than Heaven” by Charles Cross last week. Biographies of celebrities have predictable narratives and biographies of people who commit suicide have obvious endings. Combined, this book had the same potential excitement factor as listening to Ben Stein recite the alphabet. Obviously, since I finished it, I managed to find something redeemable about the book.

I skimmed it at work. I read it on my couch after classes were done for the day. I managed to read a page or two at night before sinking into a Cobain-coma. The best times were when no one was around and I could sprawl out on the floor and get lost in the narrative as Nirvana thrashed through my junky speakers. That’s how they were meant to be listened to, you know. Alone you can actually spend time translating Kurt’s haunting, rough words into sophisticated ciphers that still mean nothing. Smells like Teen Spirit will never remind me of deodorant or albinos… It will remind me of nights alone in my apartment, consuming thick, buttery frosting out of the jar and writing poems that no one would ever see.

Kurt Cobain just kind of brings out the best in you, I guess.

I couldn’t tell you when Kurt dropped out of school or the names of his parents. I don’t remember the number of drummers the band went through or where their first concert was. These details simply seem banal when juxtaposed with Kurt’s grotesque doll collection or the fact that he wore pajamas to his own wedding. Celebrity never fit Kurt Cobain.

But apparently life didn’t suit him either. I was thoroughly angered by his suicide. There were so many other times in his life when I thought, “Oh, surely he’s going to kill himself now. His life is really tragic”. Yes, that sounds horribly morbid, but everybody knows he committed suicide… I was simply trying to ‘figure it out’ before it happened. And I failed. He killed himself at the epitome of his career, just a few years after being married, and a year after he had his first child. Why why why WHY? I don’t want to call him a crazy druggie. I want to understand.

Part of me wants to understand. The other side of me, the non-rational half, wishes I had half the artistic sensibilities he possessed. Part of me knows I will never be great at writing or singing or drawing or anything that needs an ounce of creativity because I can’t let myself go. I can’t feel like Kurt feels.

It’s sad, you know. The world is divided into two types of people: those who create art and those who critique it.


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