I don’t wanna have to shout it out
I don’t want my hair to fall out
I don’t wanna be filled with doubt
I don’t wanna be a good boy scout
I don’t wanna have to learn to count
I don’t wanna have the biggest amount
I don’t wanna grow up
- —-The Ramones, ‘I don’t wanna grow up’
What is it with the fucking Ramones?
First Joey, dead of cancer in 2001 at 50.
Then Dee Dee, dead of a drug OD, at 49.
And now — does goes Johnny Ramone. Dead of cancer, at 55.
Watch out Tommy. There’s some cosmic law about Ramones not living to see sixty. You’re next, man.
I wrote this on Orkut when I first heard he was sick; when my buddy Austin Ray was lamenting that his punk rock heros were dying off:
- I dunno though. With punk guys it seems more like the pointless deaths makes sense. Not the OD or the suicide or the drank-myself-into-oblivion. I mean, you think punk, you think of that shit. But it almost makes more sense in a way, given the colossal fuck-you that punk rock represented, to have pointless deaths.
Cancer. Car accident. Stabbed on the street. Drowned. Those are the stupid, pointless sorts of death I’m talking about, the ‘universe doesn’t care’ deaths.
You get what I’m saying Ray? I mean, you don’t want to see the Ramones just go away, these guys are the very heart and soul of punk rock. But there’s almost a kind of rightness about old punk rockers going out in a pointless way.
I dunno. Maybe it’s just me. But I see all these guys laughing someplace when they’re gone. “Shit, you people see us as heros? We’re just fucking blokes.”
I still stand by that. As stupid and pointless as Joey and Johnny’s cancer deaths are, they almost make more sense to me.
But the world is poorer for the loss of these guys. People talk about the ‘pistols as if they invented punk; that’s not true. The Ramones, Television, Patti Smith, a few more that Ray would know but I can’t think of, these are the people who invented punk.
But at least we don’t have to see Joey and Johnny on the next ‘I’m a Celebrity — Get Me Out of Here‘, ala John Lydon. Small comfort, but you take what you can get in these matters.
Ray said this better, and more succinctly.
Read his version of basically this same post.