Can it really be 20 years since Bill Hicks died?

hicks_CroppedTen years ago Steve raised an Early Day motion to remember the untimely death of Bill Hicks and this is what he said

“That this house notes with sadness the 10th anniversary of the death of Bill Hicks, on February 26th 1994, at the age of 32; recalls his assertion that his words would be a bullet in the heart of consumerism, capitalism and the American Dream; and mourns the passing of one of the few people who may be mentioned as being worthy of inclusion with Lenny Bruce in any list of unflinching and painfully honest political philosophers” – Stephen Pound MP, in a February 2004 Early Day Motion before the House of Commons.

IMG_0146 (1)This year, marking the 20th anniversary of his death Steve had lunch and spent time with Bill Hicks’ brother, Sister and mother at the House of Commons.

Following this was an exchange of emails: Addresses have been left out to preserve privacy

With the brother,mother and sister of late comedic and satiric genius Bill Hicks following a very jolly lunch at Westminster !

Steve Pound

Begin forwarded message:

From: SteveHicks/MartyPrimeau
Date: 2 March 2014 15:12:33 GMT
To: <stevepoundmp@parliament.uk<mailto:stevepoundmp@parliament.uk>>
Subject: Lunch and Visit

Hi Stephen,

We’ve made it back home safely!

I just wanted to send a thank you for all the time you took with us during our
lunch and visit.
We were not expecting that kind of commitment; I’m sure your days are very full
and the fact that you took 3 hours for us is astonishing, but much appreciated.

Also, thanks for all your support of Bill and his legacy. He was a good guy and
is still sorely missed, but the acknowledgement of his work all these years
later makes the bittersweet moments very manageable.

I am delighted that I got to meet you and spend such a quality afternoon with
you.
It was a highlight of the trip!!

Please pass along thanks and appreciation to Diane as well.

Thank you a gain, sir!

Take care.

Best regards,
Steve Hicks

For those readers who may not know Bill Hicks’work or may not even remember him, this following youtube clip From “Relentless” will give you an idea of his genius:

Some people were offended by the things he said.  But I most often remember his remark about the time he was assaulted by some outraged Christians after a show in the Deep South.

“The Christians: “Hey buddy, we’re Christians and we don’t like what you said.”

Hicks smiled. “So forgive me.”

He told it like it was, and he told it like it could be:

“You know all that money we spend on nuclear weapons and defense every year? Trillions of dollars. Instead, if we spent that money feeding and clothing the poor of the world, which it would pay for many times over, not one human being excluded … not one … we could as one race explore inner and outer space together in peace, forever”

I’ve quoted the words of his below on Another Kind Of Mind, but they bear repeating – again and again. Maybe one day enough people will pay enough attention, as they express Hicks’s uniquely cynical and romantic philosophy to perfection:

“The world is like a ride in an amusement park, and when you choose to go on it you think it’s real because that’s how powerful our minds are. The ride goes up and down, around and around, it has thrills and chills, and it’s very brightly coloured, and it’s very loud, and it’s fun for a while. Many people have been on the ride a long time, and they begin to wonder, ‘Hey, is this real, or is this just a ride?’ And other people have remembered, and they come back to us and say, ‘Hey, don’t worry; don’t be afraid, ever. Because this is just a ride.’ And we…kill those people. ‘Shut him up! I’ve got a lot invested in this ride, shut him up! Look at my furrows of worry, look at my big bank account, and my family. This has to be real.’ It’s just a ride. But we always kill the good guys who try and tell us that, you ever notice that? And let the demons run amok? But it doesn’t matter, because it’s just a ride. And we can change it any time we want. It’s only a choice. No effort, not work, no job, no savings of money. Just a simple choice, right now, between fear and love

I choose love.”

And so did he. Only a couple of weeks before his death, knowing that he didn’t have long left, he wrote:

“I left in love, in laughter, and in truth – and wherever truth, love and laughter abide, I am there in spirit”

Happy birthday, Bill. Wherever you are…

Ian