I don’t quite know what’s going on but despite the booming energy of this new city, I feel uninspired to write. Maybe I’m distracted. Maybe I’m too distracted. Also – technically it should be spring, but the colder weather is draining me. (I’m sure Winnipeg might be a little more understanding of that sentiment) We are so close to warm weather. So close, yet so far from what we desire. I have my spring dresses and pastel sneakers raring to go – but NOPE.
My creativity is waning just like my energy. I want to utilize this fantastic writing outlet but my brain is failing me. So I took to social media as a source of ideas, thinking maybe I could find someone who could light a spark.
“Write a post that’s a letter to one of your heroes… a famous person, or someone who is/was in your life and meant/means a lot to you.”
PERFECT. An amazing suggestion. Why haven’t I done this sooner?! I urge you to stop reading now if you don’t want to read about my guilty pleasure –
What is a guilty pleasure though, really? Something, such as a movie, television program, or piece of music, that one enjoys despite feeling that it is not generally held in high regard. I don’t know if many of you know (ha), but I can firmly say that my entire life, I’ve been completely drawn to .. Steven Tyler.
Steven Tyler. Big mouthed, eccentric, outrageous, demon of screamin’, lead singer of Aerosmith, Steven Tyler.
I’m sure everyone has that one celebrity – “I’m sure if we just met under different circumstances, we could be friends.” Steven Tyler is mine. I don’t even know what year it was, but I remember buying an Aerosmith CD, popping it in my CD player and just melting. Every melody, key change, high pitch scream and guitar solo peeled away at all my childish angst and relaxed me. The funny thing was at this point, Aerosmith had been around for DECADES already. They weren’t new.
But I learned every song. I learned every deep track. I fell in love with the albums NOBODY liked (Done With Mirrors, anyone?) I found the live bootlegs and the secrets in lyrics that no one else would catch. I recorded everything to do with Aerosmith on VHS tapes (even Jeopardy questions involving the band) and Steven Tyler’s guest appearances on every show. I watched every documentary and made my friends watch them with me. I attempted to make my friends understand this fascination but wasn’t discouraged if they didn’t. I did somehow convince my best friend to celebrate Steven Tyler’s birthday with me over cake and Aerosmith music a couple years in a row. I learned (and still know) every Aerosmith lyric up and down, backward, forward, inside and out. My sister hated this and bought me a Frank Sinatra album – ‘Listen to this. It’s better.’ And while she was right that Frank is fantastic, I do love Frank – he’s no Steven. When my sister recently told me that she FINALLY likes them now, it was a HUGE moment in my life. VICTORY.
I made my Dad take me and my best friend in high school to see them for the first time in 2003 at the Alerus Centre in North Dakota where they played with KISS. I didn’t care about KISS. Aerosmith was amazing (my Dad recorded the whole show for me on mini-disc and I listened to it endlessly) and my love for the band only grew. I ended up seeing them again in 2004 (at the Winnipeg Arena – and you better believe that Steven Tyler reached down, held my hand and sang to me – not sure how long until I washed that hand), in 2005 at the MTS Centre and two more times after that. FIVE times. Guys, I’d see them again in a heartbeat (I wouldn’t even blink at the ridiculously high ticket prices). I kept every clipping, every ticket stub, and pieces of confetti from the shows and stapled them to my walls. To this day, I have a miniature Aerosmith harmonica on my keychain.
That’s me (the back of my head at least), with ST in 2010.
I can’t explain it. I love the written word. I love beautiful descriptive language and story telling and poetry – I’ll be the first one to admit that Aerosmith falls a little (okay, a lot) short of that. Love in an elevator? Lord of the thighs? Steven Tyler oozes sexual innuendo and Joe Perry pushes hellacious guitar. … But the depth isn’t exactly there. Somehow, it reaches me. His stint on American Idol? Amazing. Yes, I’m a fan of ‘indie’ and folk and americana and if you ask me questions about any Canadian band, I’ll know the answer. Why does Aerosmith hold my heart? Some things can’t be explained. I even managed to squeeze them onto my radio show a few times over the years … Well, my co-host had no choice in the matter.
Forever and always I will be that girl in high school who wore the Aerosmith tour shirts and the pewter Aerosmith pendant around her neck – because it’s safe, it’s comforting and Steven Tyler just doesn’t care what people think. He is 67 today, he has grandchildren, he dresses how he wants, he lets his freak flag fly and he’s been through the ringer more times than I can even imagine – alcohol, drugs, recovery, rehab, tabloids. But he still rocks it.
“Everything worth doing is worth over doing.” – Steven Tyler (My high school grad quote)
He reminds me that life is about being whoever you want to be and realizing that the truest people (the ones you want in your life) will accept you no matter how you want to expel your creative energy.
So I salute my hero forever and ever amen, Mr. Steven Tyler. Happy 67th! (Even if you can’t listen to Aerosmith ALL DAY like I will be doing – I suggest a song or two 😉 )