I wrote this after the Tragically Hip performed their final concert on August 20th of last year. It changes tenses somewhere in the middle.
History doesn't often feel like it's happening in that moment. Tonight, I already feel more Canadian than the Olympics in Brazil. The Tragically hip are interwoven into our collective national consciousness, and August 20th brought us all together - coast to coast to coast.
We deride screens for disconnecting us from the world, and the exact opposite happened. I wish I could see the final song, after seeing a speculative internet poll that morning.
But you know what? It doesn't matter.
It won't be everyone's favourite, that's for sure. But it will be some of ours. And really, is there a track from the Hip that's finale enough that you WOULDN'T want to hear?
It doesn't matter because when the first chords hit it will signify The End. And that'll hit you right in the soul.
To the Hip, I say thank you for giving the fans a goodbye. For their performance, throughout this tour, and for their 30+ year career. For documenting the lesser known moments in Canada's history, for making it just obscure enough to make me look into the lyrics. For being unapologetically strange, groundbreaking, and beautiful. If, I could, I'd thank Gord for having the courage to not let his cancer get the best of him; continuing to rock the fuck out, reigniting the passion for your music. I can't speak for everyone, but having seen one stop of the Man/Machine/Poet tour, I can't help but I feel like I'm part of some special club.
It doesn't matter what the last song is. When the lights come up for the last time, we'll all be crying our goddamn eyes out.