I haven’t had the energy to tackle Gord Downie’s Secret Path, but by all accounts it is astounding. We don’t all get to choose the manner of our death, but it’s heartening to see Gord decide what to do with the time he’s been given.
The other name Downie never forgets is Edgar – his father’s. The Downie boys worshipped him, and still do. Three days after they buried him, Gord Downie had his first seizure. It was a bad winter.
“He was so Zen,” Downie says. “And if you said that to him, he’d say, ‘What’s Zen?’” Edgar sat down when he peed, out of consideration for his wife and daughters. “We all do that,” Gord says, and the brothers nod. “Small little guy.” Edgar hated anything really frightening, really upsetting, really ugly. Downie now understands he was the same, but couldn’t admit it as a teenager. “Maybe that’s why I became a writer.”
There’s a long pause. “That could be my sensation as I’m going out,” Downie muses. “‘Oh, there’s Edgar.’ That’d be fabulous.”
While he’s still creating and making plans, the Tragically Hip front man is trying hard not to get ahead of himself