Sunday, May 8, 2016

I should have danced more

I am in my hotel room in Seoul, preparing to pack up and return to the states tomorrow after a whirlwind three night gig here singing with my band for a dedicated group of lindy hoppers. To say it's been spectacular would be an understatement.

We have been so well taken care of by the organizers, who have looked after every detail, taken us out for lavish meals like this (always with lots of vegetarian options for me):

They took us sight seeing:

...and while we played were by far the most enthusiastic audience we have ever encountered - often stopping dancing just to stand and watch us with rapt attention, even crying as we ended our final set. I spent all weekend taking pictures with fans and signing autographs. It's been nuts. And wonderful. The Korean Lindy Hop scene kicks some serious ass.

As always with these events, I leave only wishing I had danced more.

Unfortunately I am returning to an utterly bizarre and heartbreaking family drama that began the morning I left. My sister called me in tears to tell me that my beloved uncle, husband of my late aunt (mother's sister), had driven out to the gravel pit behind his house and killed himself with a shotgun. I was stunned and grief stricken. I called his two sons to express my shock and condolences - one was angry and confused; the other was sad but believed the suicide note he had left which stated that at eighty years old he felt it was his "time" and he did not want to get sick and be a burden to anyone and so decided to be the "master of his fate" and just end it.

I suspected it was a side effect of the cocktail of anti-depressants he'd been on; that no person in their right mind thinks their kids are "better off without them". Most involved parties agreed.

Then tonight as my sister and cousins were leaving his empty house in rural Connecticut where they had gathered for the weekend, they happened upon a strange note referencing a YouTube video about suicide. Upon investigation, it turns out my uncle had been very deep into one of these super crazy "law of attraction" cults that encourages its members to kill themselves when they feel like it's time - using language like "Source decides when it's time". He had stacks of books on the subject and had been watching hours of videos by this group. 

What the fuck is it with our family and these crazy cults???

Now we're all reeling trying to process this new set of information. My sister is beside herself and wants to see if we can sue this group for wrongful death. I think my younger cousin who was at peace with this may be going through a major crisis at the uncovering of this new information. I still can't even wrap my brain around it.

Well, I've got about a twenty hour travel day to ponder all this. Never a dull moment.


  1. Wow, I'm so sorry to hear about your uncle. That really is a pretty bizarre story.

    I'm glad your gig in Korea went well, though! Wow, signing autographs! How cool!

  2. What a surreal and bizarre week. I don't even know what to say!

  3. Oh my god! What a crazy story! More cults! Wow.

    I'm so sorry for your loss. And that your sister is hit so hard by it.

    Korea sounds amazing. Good for you for drinking in every moment!

  4. Sending hugs your way...I hope your uncle rests now in peace, how sad for all of you.