Regarding Kurt Cobain


Note: Regular readers, if I have any, will recall that I have a certain fondness for the now-defunct TV series Roundhouse, which ran for 52 episodes on Nickelodeon during the early Nineties. On the Prodigy Classic service, we had a regular RH discussion area, and the inevitable thread drift became even more pronounced after the death of Nirvana leader Kurt Cobain. This piece was my contribution to Teen Spirit, such as it was.

As always, the media feeding frenzy has begun, and everyone who ever knew the guy is finding a camera shoved into his face. That's to be expected. What I didn't expect was the unremitting litany of misery that apparently seems to be the sum total of the poor guy's life.

Of course, not everyone who has an unhappy childhood goes on to be a miserable adult, but the signs could not possibly have been read as encouraging. I suggest that they weren't being read at all.

The generation before Cobain's — my generation — taught its children how to question everything, which is good. Where we failed is in teaching them what to do with the answers they got, which is not so good. Not that we knew what to do with them, mind you.

The Standard American Family, with 2.3 kids, a dog and a house in the suburbs, is constantly being held up as an ideal. For Kurt Cobain, reality was constantly falling short of the ideal; his own S.A.F. was apparently at best indifferent, and he found only intermittent domestic bliss during his marriage to Courtney Love. It's hard to imagine that Cobain wasn't upset by all this.

It's also hard to imagine that he wasn't upse