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Posted on Monday, November 13th, 2006

Dave!I really should be afraid of flying.

Sometimes I have to hop on a plane just as something terrible is going on in the world. Last August, for instance, I was boarding a plane on my way to Asia just as Hurricane Katrina had been elevated to a category 5 storm and was preparing to ravage Louisiana. As we took off, I had no idea if New Orleans would even exist by the time I landed.

Things like this have happened more times than I care to remember, but only once have I been shaken up worse than the Asia trip. And, believe it or not, I owe it to The Pet Shop Boys for reminding me about it this past week.

At their concert last Sunday, they performed one of their lesser-known songs titled Dreaming of the Queen. It's a kind of disturbing lament about lost love and death during the height of the AIDS epidemic. For the show, however, it took on a very different meaning as they sang it in front of a screen showing nothing but Princess Diana's funeral procession in a continuous loop...

Diana Procession

It was a somber and respectful affair, which Pet Shop performed with hats removed and everything.

And it reminded me of a trip to Orlando I was taking on the day it had been reported that the Princess of Wales had been in a car accident in Paris. I boarded the plane hearing only conflicting reports and not knowing whether she was dead or alive.

Until I landed, of course, because the airport was filled with the sad news that Diana had not survived.

But it didn't really sink in until I was at Disney's United Kingdom Pavilion at Epcot the next day. Since the attraction is literally built and staffed to be a piece of the UK, it was almost like being there. The British workers were devastated. There were flowers everywhere. Pictures of Lady Di were displayed in all the shops. The park was crowded but nobody was speaking. Even kids who are usually running around going nuts were quiet and restrained.

It was a profoundly sad experience visiting the "Happiest Place on Earth" yet being surrounded with sorrow.

And while it may have paled in comparison with the outpouring of grief back in the "real" UK, it was nevertheless an event that's difficult to forget. Especially when you relive it at a Pet Shop Boys concert and are haunted by it ever since.


Tonight I started working on the opening for the animated music video I'm making. It forced me to answer some serious questions that had never occurred to me before. Like what does the house look like where Lil' Dave and Bad Monkey live?

Dave Home

Ahhhh... so that's what it looks like...

Dreaming of the Queen
visiting for tea
You and her and I
and Lady Di

The Queen said: 'I'm aghast
Love never seems to last
however hard you try'
And Di replied that

'There are no more lovers left alive
No one has survived
so there are no more lovers left alive
and that's why love has died
Yes, it's true
Look, it's happened to me and you'

Then carriages arrived
We stood and said good-bye
Diana dried her eyes
and looked surprised

For I was in the nude
The old Queen disapproved
but people laughed and asked
for autographs

And there were no more lovers left alive
No one had survived
so there were no more lovers left alive
and that's why love had died
Yes, it's true
Look, it's happened to me and you

I woke up in a sweat

For there were no more lovers left alive
No one had survived
so there were no more lovers left alive
and that's why love had died
Yes, it's true
Look, it's happened to me and you

Categories: Music 2006Click To It: Permalink


  1. Jeff says:

    The house looks nice and cozy. Can’t wait for the video!

  2. Bre says:

    I’m torn between thinking that using the video for that song is a lovely tribute and finding it painfully inappropriate. Not that I think it would have been intentionally used to be hurtful, but having suffered far too many funerals for my liking, it seems like a bit of an invasion, or using person grief for a public statement (which I’m not sure where I stand on). But then I’ll be the first to admit to being hypersensitive to such things.

    On lighter notes, where does Lil’Dave park his car?

  3. Janet says:

    When I was little, I had a cassette tape that played a song about Princess Di trying to get ride of her hiccups. It was called “Princess Di’s Distress” (perhaps you can Google it…)

    Now we’re not royal you and I
    But in the big things we are
    Just like Princess Diiiiii

  4. fer says:

    I’ve always thought that lil Dave and bad monkey live in a building.

  5. Dave2 says:

    Jeff… Me too!

    Bre… The snow hasn’t come yet, so Lil’ Dave is still riding his motorcycle. He parks it at the end of his driveway…

    Janet… She may have hiccuped, but I doubt that Princess Di ever farted! Princesses don’t fart!

    Fer… Bad Monkey probably does. He looks like city folk. 🙂

  6. The Chad says:

    do they have seperate rooms?

  7. Dave2 says:

    No… but they do have separate beds. Kind of like Bert and Ernie on Sesame Street.

  8. Mooselet says:

    I always found the card from her sons on the front of the coffin very moving. Royal or not, two boys lost their mother that day.

  9. Kapha says:

    Diana’s death hit us hard. She was one of those people that were actually doing good in the world – and she was really ramping up the good work at that point. I still wonder about that “accident” considering the toes she was stepping on in the international arms trading community. Steve Irwin’s death felt similar and brought up a lot of the same feelings.

    Man, I *dig* that night sky and Moon! Wow! 🙂

    I could see the back or side yard being right into or next to the woods, with a funky Jungle Gym for Bad Monkey (who doesn’t like swinging in pine trees).

    I could also see a tree house for Bad Monkey to hang out in, read comic books and smoke when Lil’ Dave isn’t watching. 😉

    Baaaaaaaad Monkey!

  10. serap says:

    I’m glad they don’t have any neighbours nearby. I have a feeling that bad monkey would be a really bad neighbour.

  11. I thought I never really cared about Princess Di, but for some reason, when she died, I was devastated. I like the thought of them sharing that tribute, especially now that they have released that movie, The Queen, about the palace reaction to her death.

  12. Avitable says:

    Those are some huge flowers! I think they may be plotting to destroy the world.

  13. nancycle says:

    I’ve always enjoyed flying. That was my first dream job – airline stewardess (my mom told me I was too short collapsing the dream like a paper cup)…Anyway, after 911 I cancelled my trip to CA and postponed it until I felt safe to fly again. The flight that followed was riddled with anxiety which was a first for me. Bummer. Second flight to CA was alright and last flight was… better.

    I couldn’t even imagine how that must have felt at Disney’s UK Pavillion. Sobering. I didn’t know that princesses didn’t fart…Do they burp? Or maybe they carry little toads that pass gas for them? You’d probably have to be a Queen to own one of those.

    Lil Dave needs a chick with a red BMW to park next to his in that sweet lil house.

    …the PSB’s song must be lesser known, can’t find it on Limewire…

  14. diane says:

    Things I love about Lil’ Dave’s house:
    -The two perfect little flowers outside
    -The sky (I want a comforter with that pattern on it–can you make that happen??)
    -The fact that his house is very “classic house” in appearance 🙂
    -The motorcycle addition which actually made me exclaim, “tee hee!”

    Weird to reflect on the Princess Di thing…I was still in grad school…I remember being at the home of my friend Meredith and her husband when we heard the news… It’s weird to think that was so long ago and I don’t talk to any of those people anymore…

  15. Mrs. K says:

    It’s amazing that almost 10 years since her death we are still talking about it. She truly was a person that touched people from all walks of life. She showed the world how we all should care for others.
    I was watching CNN when they broke the news in the US. I think even those hardened news folks were shaken that night.

    btw…The house is great!

  16. Rick says:

    Gotta wonder what Freud would have to say about that little sketch…

  17. Pauly D says:

    My only note: if you’re planning on embracing feng shui — you’d better have two flowers on either side of the house. Otherwise, it’s lopsided (from a spiritual standpoint).

  18. Laurence says:

    Lady Di is in all hearts on earth ! Since the accident, there are always flowers on the bridge “Pont de l’Alma” in Paris.

    I love the starry night… It’s like a dream. 🙂 And I loved (and always love) Bert and Ernie. It’s a good reference for Lil’Dave and Bad Monkey. The duo (or pair ?) are more enrichissing in creation of cartoons.

    (I hope you understand, because I’m sure that I’m incomprehensible)

    In any case, I’m so impatient to watch the video… I’m sure that I’ll love it !!! 🙂

  19. Miss Britt says:

    EXCELLENT post Dave.

  20. I’m flying to Miami on Saturday and I’m a little scared. I rarely fly, but I always get a bit antsy beforehand, which is ridiculous because I know I have a better chance of dying on the road!

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