Thursday, May 10, 2012

We Were Wild

And still are, wild about Sendak.

The beloved author of Where the Wild Things Are died yesterday, and even at almost 50, i wanted to howl and growl along with the wild things.

When you are a child, you can do that.  When you are over 70, you get to speak your mind or howl your head off, and people chalk it up to being over 70.

At my age, i'm supposed to be sensible about it.  Unless we have a child in our laps with which to howl, which i don't, i just have to quietly mourn.  Little Girl is 14, and took the news with little more than a "Sorry to hear that."  She's not one to howl with me any more that way (howl at me when i'm an "unfair" mom, occasionally).

My parents never read Maurice Sendak to me as a child.  Maybe they agreed with so many of their day that his works were too dark, to scary for children.  They are not, of course; they help children know that the dark places we face can be confronted and dealt with.

When i had kids, and i found Wild Things, i didn't know until i saw the copyright date that it wasn't a new book.  The children and i relished it, dancing and howling and growling and enjoying wild rumpuses of our own.

One of Sweetie's sentimental favorite movies, Labyrinth, is loosely based on Sendak's Outside Over There.

If i ever have grandchildren, i want to join them in a wild rumpus or two.

Today is

Clean up Your Room Day -- one of those holidays that no one knows how it got started, but it's a good idea, especially if your house is decorated by teens in "Recently Ransacked" style!

Constitution Day -- Federated States of Micronesia

Diamond Jubilee Pageant -- Windsor Castle, Windsor, England (celebrating Queen Elizabeth II's 60-year reign; through the 13th)

Golden Spike Day -- finishing the first US Trancontinental Railroad in 1869

Lag B'Omer -- Judaism

Mom's Night Out -- sponsored by

Mother's Day -- El Salvador; Guatemala; Mexico

National Shrimp Day

St. Cathal's Day (Patron against drought, plagues,storms)

St. Father Damien of Moloka'i's Day (Patron of lepers, outcasts, those with HIV/AIDS; Hawaii)

St. Job's Day (Patron against depression and ulcers)

Sunning of the Buddha -- Tibet (many temples take their Buddha statues out for a day in the sun)

Trust Your Intuition Day -- practice, and you'll get better at it

Vesak -- Buddhists (birthday of Lord Buddha)

World Lupus Day

Birthdays Today:

Kenan Thompson, 1978
Amanda Borden, 1977
Paul "Bono" Hewson, 1960
Phil and Steve Mahre, 1957
Donovan, 1946
Judith Jamison, 1943
Gary Owens, 1936
Pat Summerall, 1930
Nancy Walker, 1922
David O. Selznick, 1902
Fred Astaire, 1899
Max Steiner, 1888
Emperor Fushimi of Japan, 1265
Emperor Claudius, 213

Today in History:

The Roman armies under Titus open a full scale assault on Jerusalem, 70
Vienna's church orders all Jews to wear a distinctive garb, 1267
Scottish nobles recognize authority of English king Edward I, 1291
Amerigo Vespucci allegedly leaves on a voyage to the New World, 1497
Christopher Columbus "discovers" the Cayman Islands, 1503
Jacques Cartier visits Newfoundland, 1534
Scottish Protestants under John Knox uprise against queen-mother Mary, 1559
England forcefully annexes Jamaica from Spain, 1655
Benjamin Franklin first tests the lightning rod, 1752
Louis XVI becomes King of France, 1774
The Barbary pirates of Tripoli declare war on the United States of America, 1801
New York City banks fail, and unemployment reaches record levels, 1837
In India, the first war of Independence begins, 1857
The First Transcontinental Railroad, linking the eastern and western United States, is completed at Promontory Summit, Utah (not Promontory Point, Utah) with the golden spike, 1869
Romania  declares itself independent from Turkey, 1877
The Supreme Court of the United States rules in Nix v. Hedden that a tomato is a vegetable, not a fruit, under the Tariff Act of 1883, 1893
The first Mother's Day is observed, 1908
J. Edgar Hoover is appointed Director of the FBI, 1924
First successful launch of a V-2 rocket at White Sands Proving Ground, 1946
Bill Haley & His Comets release "Rock Around the Clock", the first rock and roll record to reach number one on the Billboard charts, 1954
The nuclear submarine USS Triton completes Operation Sandblast, the first underwater circumnavigation of the earth, 1960
The Federated States of Micronesia  becomes self-governing, 1979
Fran├žois Mitterrand becomes the first Socialist President of France in the French 5th republic, 1981
Nelson Mandela is inaugurated as South Africa's first black president, 1994
Deadliest day on the mountain: a rogue storm on Everest claims 8 lives, including experienced climbers, 1996
The Maeslantkering, a storm surge barrier in the Netherlands that is one of the world's largest moving structures, is opened by Queen Beatrix, 1997
Solicitor General Elena Kagan is the youngest Justice and third woman nominated for the Supreme Court of the United States, 2010
Microsoft announces plans to purchase Skype, 2011


  1. We must never tame our Rumpuses. They must remain eternally wild.

  2. I loved Max, rumpuses and all. I will miss Sendak. The wild things will live on, though...


  3. Stephen and Cat, as long as his book exists, they will remain, and remain wild.