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Last night, I meant to make what would have been a somewhat simple entry. We woke yesterday morning to the news that Maurice Sendak had died, which hit both Spooky and me pretty hard. His beautiful, brilliant work was so important to both our childhoods. And, I don't know, I think some part of me fantasized I'd one day be able to tell him that in person. As with Edward Gorey and Doctor Seuss and so many others, this was not to be, and so it goes.



And, in the news of Sendak's death, we learned that he was gay, and that he'd been with his partner for fifty years. Sendak is quoted as having said, "All I wanted was to be straight so my parents could be happy. They never, never, never knew.” There were two videos I wanted to post last night, so I'll post them now, in memoriam:




Karen O and the Kids



The Dresden Dolls


And, there's this marvelous comic strip by Art Spiegelman, recounting a conversation he had with Sendak on the subject of children and books (behind the cut):









And then, this morning, the news that North Carolina had passed Amendment 1.

And then...President Obama, finally, finally, gave voice to his conscience, and came out in favor – indisputably – of gay marriage. Sir, this is one reason I voted for you. And no, it's not political suicide*, and it's not too little too late. It's a bold move, and it's a step towards what we've been fighting for – and you get what you've been fighting for in bits and pieces, as it comes. Don't you dare fucking whine.

So, you see...it's been a complicated couple of days.

Bittersweet,
Aunt Beast

Postscript: Well, unless you concede that so is being a black man running for the US presidency.

Comments

( 26 comments — Have your say! )
xjenavivex
May. 10th, 2012 01:24 am (UTC)
thank you so much for sharing this
greygirlbeast
May. 10th, 2012 01:25 am (UTC)

You're welcome.
elsewhereangel
May. 10th, 2012 01:27 am (UTC)
It has been a messed up few days. Leave it to you to put it all into words with grace; I appreciate that.
greygirlbeast
May. 10th, 2012 01:32 am (UTC)

Leave it to you to put it all into words with grace;

I thank you, though it didn't feel graceful.
aerodrome1
May. 10th, 2012 01:29 am (UTC)
Beautiful entry. Thank you.
greygirlbeast
May. 10th, 2012 01:32 am (UTC)

You're welcome.
David Lemoine
May. 10th, 2012 01:32 am (UTC)
It's not political suicide, but it may cost him the votes of some moderate democrats or independents. That in itself though is all the more reason to smile; that a politician gave voice to those who needed it, despite the political ramifications, and he did it before a major election to boot.
greygirlbeast
May. 10th, 2012 01:33 am (UTC)

Agreed on all counts.
sovay
May. 10th, 2012 01:54 am (UTC)
And, there's this marvelous comic strip by Art Spiegelman, recounting a conversation he had with Sendak on the subject of children and books

I had never seen that. Thank you. It's a good thing to remember him by.
greygirlbeast
May. 10th, 2012 01:59 am (UTC)

I had never seen that.

I never had, either. Very bow tie.
sovay
May. 10th, 2012 02:26 am (UTC)
Very bow tie.

I love how much Sendak looks like one of his own drawings, but I recognize those expressions from Colbert's interview.
ulffriend
May. 10th, 2012 02:10 am (UTC)
When I heard that he had died, it was as if a little more light had gone out of the world. Madeline L'Engle, Anne McCaffery, now him - these were some of the people who taught me that there magic existed. I haven't really processed the loss yet.

I saw the New Yorker strip on Neil's blog. It's just like Sendak - wonderful, harsh, true.

I didn't realize that he was gay. It's a shame it's worth mentioning. "He is survived by his husband of 50 years" should be enough.
greygirlbeast
May. 10th, 2012 02:17 am (UTC)

Madeline L'Engle, Anne McCaffery, now him

A blow, indeed.
esanko
May. 10th, 2012 03:01 am (UTC)
- and I am in the process of attempting to move to North Carolina- has to do with the temperate climate and proximity to the ocean, plus a world-class veterinary medicine college...
I am, have always been, and will always be totally Bi- Pansexual, whatever. I like... cool people. Politically, of course, this is a blow to personal freedoms, but personally, has little impact. A, I'm not going to "marry" anyone, ever, in this lifetime, and B, I don't date anyone at all, M,F or T. So...
Read Edge of Dark Water by Joe R. Lansdale. It is absolutely exquiste- no other adjective. Also must again urge you to read The Ritual by Adam Nevill, with Spooky out loud with candles and wine. You will shriek and clutch. Fun, very dark stuff in one of the last stands of old-growth forest left on earth, in Sweden. 4 friends go hiking, take a shortcut, BAD idea, then goes... ?
greygirlbeast
May. 10th, 2012 05:56 am (UTC)

- and I am in the process of attempting to move to North Carolina- has to do with the temperate climate and proximity to the ocean, plus a world-class veterinary medicine college...
I am, have always been, and will always be totally Bi- Pansexual, whatever. I like... cool people. Politically, of course, this is a blow to personal freedoms, but personally, has little impact. A, I'm not going to "marry" anyone, ever, in this lifetime, and B, I don't date anyone at all, M,F or T. So...


I don't want to misinterpret...but, if I hear you right, doesn't this seem just a wee bit selfish? I think it's mostly that "So..." part. Besides, what you may think is true now...the marriage thing, for example, never say never. Been there.
esanko
May. 10th, 2012 08:27 pm (UTC)
Aunt Beast-
Yes, sorry, quite selfish actually, and terribly bitter. That was the 6th beer talking- In the unselfish clear light of day, what I meant to say was, of course this represents a huge blow to LGBT rights- for other people who may wish to marry! Seriously, what the hell, NC. I am formally ashamed of my selfishness and will go work on my Torvosaurus sculpture to try and forget that I am an idiot. I have been single and stuck in PA for far too long...
mb2u
May. 10th, 2012 03:37 am (UTC)
The far right will see it as another reason to hate Obama. There are some moderates who will be turned off, and a lot of left-leaning types who are pleased he's finally taken a stand. Personally, I am quite pleased.
greygirlbeast
May. 10th, 2012 05:57 am (UTC)

The far right will see it as another reason to hate Obama.

I'm not sure we need to measure their hatred beyond the 100% it had already reached.
Lawrence Carlin
May. 10th, 2012 03:55 am (UTC)
Being the optimistic sort, I dream that one day Dancy's angel will see the light and decide to freelance. He would send Dancy to North Carolina, telling her "there are monsters in North Carolina, real monsters; and lots of them. Your work will be done when the last monster has exhaled his final, tainted breath."

If that sounds too angry, good; because I am angry, and have a right to be. Bigots never seem to get the memo.
greygirlbeast
May. 10th, 2012 05:58 am (UTC)

Bigots never seem to get the memo.

They work in a different office in a different building across town...

Edited at 2012-05-10 05:59 am (UTC)
opalblack
May. 10th, 2012 04:36 am (UTC)
We're reaching a tipping point where opposition to same-sex marriage is becoming political suicide. It's making the crispies scream louder than ever, and that works against them, because every day, the carnival of hate pushes more moderate, middle-ground people who might have been persuaded to oppose gay marriage into supporting it. No one half-sane wants to be seen as agreeing with the WBC. That works for me.

Edited at 2012-05-10 04:38 am (UTC)
greygirlbeast
May. 10th, 2012 06:00 am (UTC)

It's making the crispies scream louder than ever, and that works against them, because every day, the carnival of hate pushes more moderate, middle-ground people who might have been persuaded to oppose gay marriage into supporting it.

I will hope this is true.
pepsiswinger
May. 10th, 2012 06:41 am (UTC)
This is a perfect post for a truly strange, bittersweet day.
seph_ski
May. 10th, 2012 01:30 pm (UTC)
Most bittersweet
This post brought tears to my eyes.
stsisyphus
May. 10th, 2012 07:17 pm (UTC)
I've been completely unable to articulate the loss I felt when I heard about Mr. Sendak. Until this post, I didn't know he was gay either; and I feel horrible that he and Eugene never had the opportunity to enjoy the recognition of their dedication to each other. Maybe they didn't need it, I expect they didn't care what mainstream society thought. But we needed it, the world needed to see it - to have it visible and demonstrable. I wish, I really wish, we had been mature enough as a society to accept their love and devotion. We owed him that.

Dammit, this is fucking me up all over again.
fornikate
May. 10th, 2012 07:46 pm (UTC)
i'm emotionally exhausted from these two things happening basically together.
( 26 comments — Have your say! )