Every year, once a year, I watch Joe Strummer: The Future is Unwritten.
I only ever watch this film once a year. There are a few reasons why. One because I took my then punkest best friend to see it with me and my dad when were both...fuck, 14 or something. It spoke to us. My dad drove us home fast as fuck playing Sonic Youth full blast, and for the first time I felt free. Y'know? The first time I saw that film I thought I could DO anything. BE anything. If Joe could do it, so could I. I was mocked for that a lot, but it stuck with me; I can be whatever the fuck I want.
A year later, the second time I watched it I cried almost all the way through it, because by now I was an established Clash fan. It was the first time I mourned for Joe and everything that died with him, but I still felt inspired. I wanted to make the most of my life before it was taken away from me before I knew it.
I may have missed a year of watching it. I think that year was when I was probably the most estranged from myself.
I watched it this year, when I rememberd my private tradition. I had to watch it in sections because apprently I sleep a lot these days. Now when I watched the end, I just felt sad. I was mourning, but more than I had before. I mourning over how safe music is now, the apathy people have towards it, how punk seems like it never really happened, how mocking people are to people like me even now, how much I empathised with Joe, how much I missed someone I had never met, how much I wanted to be this man. I wanted to be in that period of time, to experience what I've felt I've missed. To meet like minded people who recognise that in the 8th aniversary of Joe's death it was a fucking big deal. He was a big deal.
There's a scene on the dvd, where he's being recorded for something unrealted to the film (Julien Temple made the film in a very... ransom note kind of way) and he approaches these two girls for a gig with his new band. This is years, and years later. They have no idea who he is.
I would do anything to talk to Joe. Just one conversation.
And I think the reason why I only let myself watch the film once a year is because I am so in love with that man, and how much he's influenced me, changed me, continues to change me and inspire me when I finally give The Clash and even his other work the time it's deserved. It's the purest, simpilest, crippiling love I've experienced. Which is why I don't throw myself in front of it often.
I miss someone I've never met.
R.I.P Joe Strummer.