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#1 munk

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Posted 21 November 2017 - 02:22 PM

I have a story to tell the Rush world.  If I'd just become a fan, I probably wouldn't write this for you.  But something happened which became too big for me to hold onto  That's probably the standard progression, right; for a testimonial?  And this is a testimonial.  Place me firmly in the archives of actual human beings who heard Rush and were changed for the better.  Sign me up in the Big Sky of fan lists.  I will not deny Rush even if the Cock Crows before dawn,

This is a God thing.  Though not religious, by common terms, some of my words may entail religion.  Some of my words may entail descriptive analysis of the 1970's and social patterns.  My name is munk, 61, a hermit.  I don't speak to people very often.  In the last several years, when I do speak, people tend to get excited.  They become animated, angry, sorrowful, upset, happy; but ultimately they seem to decide mistrust of crazy hermits is a staple of modern living.  My family understands me.  Most of my friends are dead and gone.  Because of the events of my life, I've lost much of the subtlety and nuance of speaking to people.  I have little culture, my cues and tones and prompts are 'all wrong'.  Remember the old sour dough in black and white B westerns?  Guys like Gabby Hays?  (sic?)  They come down from the high desert, or mountains, or tropical jungle, have no 'truck' with anyone and speak the truth plainly and without guile.

At my "suburbs" high school a huge crisis emerged when Rush arrived in 74.  The Cheerleaders, football squad and related auxillary tribe support units met at the cafeteria each day at noon, and for 10 minutes or so after lunch were allowed to play music on a boombox.  Arrowsmith had been the hands down winner for a long while.  None of this mattered to me, I had a sack lunch and ate outside with the 'Brains'.  ( I turned half of the brains into hippies during HS and eventually we became the hippy faction of the Brains.  A splint-off group; who knew?)  There was a great row when Rush finally took over the lunchroom.  All the arguments and fighting about which band was best.  Like English Sparrows in a bird house trash talking the neighborhood.  What a racket.

I had to admit I liked Rush better, but that was it, and the end of Rush for me at HS.  If Rush had arrived when I was 13, I'd probably have an owl tatooed on my chest.  Every kid wants power chords.  Let's not pretend otherwise.  Arrowsmith ruled Southern California.  It was the sound made for that place; brain damage, hot sun, drugs sex and rocknroll.  When Rush arrived, they sounded like Arrowsmith.  That blocked Rush for me. I wasn't an Arrowsmith fan.

We went Dead at hippie college. Who wouldn't?  Afterall, there is no finer hippie than the one which arrives after the event is over.  Boy, did we look like hippies. A entire generation with long hair and all of their parent's problems. I was the part of the Revolution that wanted a new society, a better and more honest way to interact.  We wanted a better world.  That's gone. Sad.  Halfway through school, a freshman /sophomore came to me who'd been tormented by his hallmates because he liked Rush.  He pleaded with me to give Rush a try.  By this time I was a little infamous so he probably thought if munk liked Rush his buds would leave him be.  I listened.  I believe it was Fly by Night.  Don't know for sure.  I was impressed. This music was much more involved than I'd thought earlier.  But....still too pop and metal for me.  If I could get past the genre I could listen. Told him so.  He felt better.

That was it for college and Rush.  I do believe someone came by our college house later and submitted a Rush album for our approval. Same result.

I became a desert bum, wandering the Mojave and working as a nurse.  Stopped drinking, stopped chems.  All who have injured themselves greatly through this passage will know what I say by 'the bottom dropped out'.  When you return from this journey, any peace you once had at rest probably won't be there. One works for peace of mind after sobriety, because physiologically, it's not there like it 'used to be'.  And there came a time, after all the mountain biking, hiking, collecting, music listening, hunting, etc etc, where nothing worked any more.

No endorphins for munk.  Poor munk.

There aint another lock on your heart, soul and brain like the locked wall addiction builds between you and the world.  Like Sylvia Plath's Bell jar, recovering people are dulled and unable to feel, to get moving. At least, I was unable.  Fear.  Fear is the art killer, the defeat before you've begun. It is improbable then, that I'd marry and raise a family, but this is precisely what I did.  You didn't think you were in a clever man's short story, did you?

We saved and left Ca for the Rocky Mountain West.  I had two sons thus far, a toddler and a 9 month old baby.  One day a very dear friend arrived at the door and had me listen to Rush.  I did, but refused to leave to go to a concert with him.  He left and that was sad.  But you cannot chase Light, my friends, it comes to you freely and leaves freely.  Never saw him again.   I listened to a song.  That was the last Rush intrusion.

Approx 6 years afterwards, I was badly damaged.  That was...12 years ago?  (Never ask an old man how he is, or what the problems are, because if this post has seemed never ending, you have no conception of Time, indeed, until you've inquired of the elderly what has most recently ceased function, or detached from the body completely.)  Brain injury, fractured skull, seperated orbits, eye split down the side and bottom,  Nose smeared all over the face; two weeks later it was rebroken in a doctor's office without anestetic and once more rolled about in a re-set.  Things went downhill from there.  Lots of health issues.  Blaa blaa.  

No, I don't remember like I used to.  I'm the same, but it's as if the only way I can interact with this world is with the equivalent of an AM radio.  There's a narrow freq response bandwidth, lots of static, and like radio waves in our atmosphere, sometimes one channel crashes over another, or just a voice or a note.  People don't see me because they are too taken up with the AM radio and the clumsy dials. Kacee Kasem. (sic)  No, the brain is not the same.  Mainly on the plane or even over Spain.


I knew a street guy who'd been a genius.  After his brain injury, he said it was as if he was in murk, slow motion, mollasses.  That's it. Andy Warhol said after the shooting and his surgeries, paraphrase, "before the shooting I felt like maybe 40 percent of the time wasn't real, I wasn't really there.  now I feel like that 90 percent of the time.
Bingo.

The damage forced continuation of opiates and whatever else the Docs prescribed.  Three years ago I broke that, but almost left this Place once more in doing so... for over three years I've barely managed to do anything.  Months spent out of it, groggy, stuperous..the pain meds left a parting gift- guts are damaged.  Food rolls through on the express plan.  Gets to the point I don't want to eat at all.  I lost weight all right; I'm at college weight.  If only it was distributed as it was then....I'm the proud owner of a lollipop body. But my cat still loves me. I look like an eight year old boy, jeans and T shirt, who is now an old man.  That's right.  Blue jeans and T shirt.  What a maroon.

If you've made it to this point, here it is; it's not as if I heard a Rush song and became a fan.  This is not that type of story.  i heard a Rush song, and the notes in that song healed my brain and woke the man.  And that is why this is a God thing and I had to break my rules and bring this to you.  This happened about 2 months ago. It is still happening.  The process has begun.

You- tube is a modern deal and we know hermits have no truck with trailer trash videos and related drek.  But my awesome stereo was BROKEN, and I'm too weak to drive to Oregon to get it fixed.  But I will eventually.  I want to get the huge Polk towers reconnected to the Carver and I am going to hear Rush by God.  But until then...I was forced to use Youtube and headphones.  Why did I listen?

First two albums I owned ; Steppingwolf and Mama's and Papas.  Sgt Peppers, White Album, and the first Led Zep.   About the 6th, a Uriah Heep landed in munk land.  Curious pick.  Had no true place with the others.  Heep was different.  Always on the verge of greatness, never quite realizing....

You know, today heavy metal sounds like funeral marches, or maybe the invitation to despair and hell you've always wanted.  But it wasn't like that in the beginning.  Heavy metal was the natural result of not enough power chords in pop music, (probably Beatles driven frustration) and LSD.  Editors, I looked for the rules which flashed before my broken eye when I registered, but could not find them again.  if some words are forbotten here please remove them.  You know....in a perfect world, that's probably how most rules should be.  I don't know what I'm allowed to say here.  Dealiing with powers I know not ....please don't let me fall.  There has not been another time on this planet since those days.

All my opinion; you have professors here and people who actually speak to other human beings, so there is much I'm not aware of.  All of this is probably defined, twined, and reclined....or even sublimed, but this is my opinion.  LSD broke the status quo social structure.  I'm proud of us all because of what happened to bands like Rush. Imagine standing up before the ceiling of a very large place, or under the open sky, and singing not just for your community, but for recognition from the face of the unknowable?  That is the ego and bravery of those early bands.  The lead singer of Heep could go three octaves, often in a semi serious operatic style.  Do you see how much they were willing to risk?  They broke all the rules.  How?  All I can say is that when the patterns fall, you are free to make new ones.  All it takes is courage.  That's all.

I listened to Rush on YouTube because of Subdivisions.  I grew up in Subdivisions.  Something in his voice tugged at me.....could he be that guy?  The band that still carried on the Good Fight?  The real deal in the day?  Yes, they were.  So now I was a Rush fan. There was a song I kept listening to, By tor and the Snowdog.  I heard it several times over the course of a couple weeks.  To listen to Rush, I have to be an active listener.  There is too much going on, and it is not my genre, so it's harder.  That turned out to be a great plus, because only outside of our comfort zone can more light get in. I was listening to the song...and I heard it.  There is a 30 second or so piece in snowdog, I'd buy the entire album for those seconds only.  Listening to it one evening, the sounds went deep inside, into a place I had no access to since the bad health bit.  Oh I cried and cried.  I had to back off the song because it was special and I was turning it into a cliche, a pancake house jingle. So I waited a couple weeks and heard it again.  Memories started to come back.

I think it was the very same song my friend had wanted me to hear twenty years ago.  I could be wrong.  But I don't think so.  I think he'd known I was stuck and couldn't breath, and wanted me to get some light.  He always had a great ear.  It appears he left me a cookie.  I doubt he realized that.

I've been through many NDE's in life.  From early childhood I've had dreams and visions.  A lifetime of trying to keep and hold, or even verify the existance of a living Light.  There is lots of Light- Filled music in my library.  (on the floor in a huge random pile next to the stereo, of course)  But it was Rush that reached the source for me at this time.

I haven't stopped laughing and smiling since.  Where once I saw crushing corruption, I now see a huge mess and silly humans trying this or that.  We're the species that invented lawyers, and unanswerable bureacracies.  When we finally meet another intelligent life form, I'm scared we'll send astronaut lawyers and the aliens will wipe us out in aggravation and fear.

It's a life change.  It's the biggest yet.  I may not even survive.  But I've decided to start walking, eating, and living.  Everything is changing.  A door has opened, a dam burst, and...I'm back again.  I may even write a book, if that's what is called for, but after all these years of being a word wonk, that may not be what there is left to do after all.
I thank you for being Rush fans.  I thank you for participating in one of the great cultural events of our era.  I thank you for Rush concerts being places of relative peace, not known for damage and injury to others.  That Rush would have stood for over 40 years under our sky and kept kindness alive does not need my approval, they have clearly carried out a service approved of by Heaven. (or Altaman or whatever is your route).  They done good, Ma.

So, what you knew all along, Rush is Good, Rush is Great, and Rush allowed me to heal. But you knew that.

I've left many personal details out of this out of respect for my old friend.  If nonetheless you think you know who this is, please leave him alone.  He's a fine fellow and does not need directions to any Light.  He could have visited the Hermit's family any time, and after 20 years, i have never stopped expecting the door to open.  But this is not a search thread.  leave him be, as I have.  You know, he really wasn't suited to the wild places....he loves them, but will always return to people.  He was ahead of me, you see....i think it must be true that love is the most important task we do while we are here. Real love is not undone, or ended.  My Brother is fine.  I've buried two of the greatest friends I will meet in this lifetime, and perhaps never would have met them if i'd gone to that Rush concert.  Besides, maybe it took 20 years to be able to hear it.  

I've left much out.  Another time, another thread.  I didn't even say half the things I wanted to about Rush.
did you know, for instance, that Rush helps old men?  Our brains need stimulation, the gears are worn, the vitality down.... Rush is good for Old People.  2112, Hemispheres,....
That's all, folks!


PS  DNA Is the Elder Scrolls

If no one has said this remember you heard it on the rush forum from munk first.  But by the time I think of something new there's always a book out on it. ...

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#2 toymaker

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Posted 21 November 2017 - 02:59 PM

Wow.  I kind of feel like I've been on a trip.  Thanks for another perspective on one of my favourite bands.  And welcome to the forum.

#3 blueschica

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Posted 21 November 2017 - 06:53 PM

I'm glad you are starting to feel better in your life.  So many of us have found Rush's music was there at a time we really needed it. Welcome to TRF!  :hi:

#4 munk

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Posted 22 November 2017 - 09:39 AM

Thanks.  Sheeesh.  I sound like another crazy old man.  Life is a very funny thing.
I guess 'old' and 'crazy' do often go together, like peanut butter and bananas.

#5 Babycat

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Posted 24 November 2017 - 04:58 AM

Welcome to TRF, munk!  :hi:

#6 OldRUSHfan

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Posted 03 December 2017 - 01:27 PM

Yes, Welcome, munk, and Hello from another hermit. My Hobby, aside from being a MUSIC player and appreciationist, is plastic model assembly.  Keeps my hands nimble and my brain active also...usually music is IT!  Good to hear there are other Weird Old Men about!
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#7 munk

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Posted 04 December 2017 - 10:38 PM

OldRushfan, thanks.
Plastic models....glue...and my fingerprints... all over the doors in glue.  Thus ended my plastic model career.  If you can do models, you could refinish furniture. That's above my skill set.  Plastic model sets must be better today than I recall in the 60's.  They must be intricate.
I build mega bloks model sets, paint boards for the set up.
How does that happen?  Raise three sons and fight all the great wars with the soldiers, pyrates, dragons, arms and magic, and when the boys move on...,  eh eh; Dad stands still and keeps the toys.  I just keep building scenery and new models.





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