Monday, April 07, 2008

Remembering Nick.

Ten years ago today, Nick Auf der Maur died at the much-too-young age of 56. In memory of Montreal’s butt-pinching boulevardier, The Montreal Gazette has an interview with his daughter Melissa, she of Hole and Smashing Pumpkins fame, and several of his columns about her pre- and post-stardom.

For those of you unfamiliar with Nick - or only familiar with the alley named after him on Crescent St - Jamie O'Meara has a column in this week’s Hour about him:
Nick Auf der Maur's love of Montreal was boundless, and it's almost as though the city itself wove the bizarre and often complicated plots that he would star in and later write about. From feeling up Rudolf Nureyev's derrière to fisticuffs with Jack Kerouac at a downtown restaurant ("He was drunk as a newt"), to crashing a gay bar with Conrad Black to drunkenly storming the Rialto theatre premiere of a movie he took exception to, Nick lived a life unlike any other, and he was almost compulsively inclined to share it through his writing.
I didn’t know Nick personally, only as a reader. But he did play a pivotal role in my life. When I was just a young lad of 15, I wrote him a long letter about Donald Duck comic books - he was a notorious Duck fan. One day – I’m guessing he was hungover and didn’t want to write - he decided to print the entire thing in his column, which was on page A2 of the Gazette at the time. That was it for me: I was hooked on newspapers and still am.

There’s a party in Nick’s honour tonight at Ziggy's Pub (1470 Crescent St) starting at 6 pm. I’ve got to hit the road before then, but here’s to Nick! Thanks for the push in the right direction.

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