I think meeping's reaction was my favourite, though. When I told him, he said "Is she going as a groupie, or is she going to perform with them?". And I had a sudden attack of terrifying mental images as I tried to imagine my mum on stage, playing... I don't know what instrument. Triangle, possibly.
She is actually just going as part of the tour posse, but as I explained to Tim, she is genuinely good friends with Knox of the Vibrators, so "groupie" isn't quite the right word. I mean, she's about as good friends with Knox as I am with hatter. Known each other years and years, ring each other up every couple of weeks, go to each other's houses, that sort of thing. He sends her birthday and Christmas cards, and a get well soon card when she was in hospital (signed from him and his cat). And when Richard & I went to his art exhibition and admired one of the paintings, he insisted we have it. So we own a painting done by a Genuine Punk Legend.
The real reason this is cool isn't anything to do with the Punk Legendary-ness of the bands, but to do with how my mum is. She had a radical hysterectomy in January '03 because of cancer. She wasn't actually very ill from the cancer yet, but became very very ill from the operation. Radical hysterectomy means they have to open you up in a messy way and remove everything - with uterine cancer they can't just remove the uterus through the opening that God gave us because of the risk of it bursting and flooding cancerous cells everywhere. So she had all her reproductive organs removed along with a fair amount of abdominal muscle, and needed tons of clips and stitches, that she then reacted badly to. She couldn't do anything for months on end - total bed rest with occasional trips out in a wheelchair. She started to get better around Christmas when her doctors finally noticed that her thyroid gland had been completely buggered by all this hormonal messing about and started giving her thyroxine, but it's taken months and months to get that up to a sensible level. Also, because it is an oestrogen-dependent cancer, she has to take vast quantities of anti-cancer drugs that are almost as bad as chemotherapy in a lot of ways, including something to knock out any oestrogen her poor belaboured pituitary might have decided to make in the absence of ovaries, and lots of testosterone. So she was getting male pattern baldness and losing her feminine shape - which on top of losing most of her "bits" made her feel horrible.
Anyway, her thyroxine dosage has finally been sorted out - and joy of joys - there now exists a testosterone patch that releases it directly into the body, and means that she needs a dosage roughly 20 x less than she did in tablet form. This means that she has a waist again and energy to do things, and being about as physically healed as she's going to get, this means she can do things like go on tour with her friend & his band. Which is why this is cool.