Happy 67th birthday, David Bowie! Congratulations on your many, many accomplishments — the most recent being your hit album, The Next Day! What sound AND vision that was, am I right?
There are many things about you, as a person and a musician, that I appreciate, David Robert Jones — your mismatched eyes! your amazing eyebrows! decades of genius work! — but there is one thing with which I take umbrage: You never wrote me back.
When I first started writing to you, Mr. Bowie, I was around 6 years old — having watched "Labyrinth" with my babysitter and fallen in love with your bewitching voice, rocker locks and mysteriously proportioned grey tights.
The obsession merely burgeoned after that first of many viewings, leading me to check out every book on you from the Groton Library (those books soon made their way to my permanent collection, unnoticed by the grey-haired librarians), cast you as the protagonist in every creative writing assignment, prance about elementary school in a giant Glass Spider Tour T-shirt (which I still own) and, ultimately, dress as you for Halloween at age 8.
People thought that I was attired as Beetlejuice, Mr. Thin White Duke, but I didn't mind. In fact, I didn't mind any of the mocking that I endured from my less-worldly classmates, who plastered their lockers with snaps of Jonathan Taylor Thomas while mine, instead, rocked Xeroxed photos of Aladdin Sane.
I didn't mind, Mr. Wham Bam, Thank You Ma'am!, because as I was playing with my interactive "Jump" CD-Rom and mooning over your sad clown visage in the "Ashes To Ashes" video, I was waiting with breath that was bated for the letter that you would inevitably send me.
I mean, I sent one nearly every day — addressed to you, "Mr. David Bowie, London, England." Did I not get the address right? Doesn't everyone in London, England, know precisely where you reside? Or, at least, where to forward your correspondence? What was I doing wrong?
Because, sadly, my mailbox remained bare of missives from you, Mr. Kook (Hung up on romancing), populated only by letters from my Indian penpal Divya, who soon moved to somewhere like California and became much less interesting, anyway.
Which is why I wrote this letter to God, likely around age 8, to remedy the situation in the most reasonable manner possible:
I am waiting for David Bowie to write back. What takeing his so long? Please tell me. And why did you drop my necklace in the snow. Please have him write back tomorrow morning. Please leave me a letter from you and take this one.
Love, Brenna Ehrlich
(There is also included a drawing of me standing by the mailbox, despondent, tossing aside mail addressed to my family members in a manner surely not approved by the U.S. Postal Service.)
So you see, Mr. Black Tie White Noise, I have tried everything! I mean, even God himself could not help me.
So as you celebrate your birthday — which you share with both Elvis and my childhood karate teacher, Sensei Chuck Merriman — perhaps you could lift a pen and scribble a reply? My address has changed since I last wrote (so you'll likely have to look it up), but if you write me, oh you rebel (rebel) you, you could be my hero ... just for one day.