*STE Bulletin 23 – 2nd February 1994

Mr Cynical, miserable old git, eh? There’s been a lot of talk in the bulletins recently, about friends, especially since one of our greatest friends, Steve Burgess, passed away. I too have been thinking about friends. Friends, by nature, are friendly. They reassure you and respect you. They can also point out your faults without holding a grudge, or without putting you down, so as you still feel good about yourself. They don’t hold you responsible for their own problems and they are willing to accept change.

Steve Burgess was sometimes disheartened by the punk scene, due to its lack of acceptance of change or new ideas, i.e. closed-mindedness. What do us old-time punks do? The ones who were there years ago? Do we disassociate ourselves from what is happening now and reminisce about the glory days, or do we put in our efforts and make those glory days again (and again)? I think those wishing for the old days are closed-minded and unable to accept change. I also think that is their right but what I’m afraid of is the poison that can be spread. It is easy to criticise our scene – it is easy to criticise anything. It is also hard to ignore unconstructive criticism. Doubts start to nag, “Is it worth it? Why do we bother?” Let’s reject those ideas – they are not for our scene. One of Steve’s favourite sayings was “It’s all punk rock, innit?” meaning that whatever we did, whatever we do – it’s still punk rock. We are not trapped by the term but released from it. Can you accept change? Can you be my friend?

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