‘Where The Wild Things Are’ Author Maurice Sendak Dies :(
Basically the best person ever is dead. Maurice Sendak, author of the incredible "Where The Wild Things Are," is no longer with us.
If you don't like this book you probably don't have a soul.
"Where The Wild Things Are," the tale of a young boy who leaves on a beautiful, humbling, often terrifying journey into a land full of monsters, was very controversial when it first came out. It was controversial because of the way it refused to sugarcoat the childhood experience. Of his own work Maurice said, "There's a cruelty to childhood, there's an anger. And I did not want to reduce Max to the trite image of the good little boy that you find in too many books."
A picture of what childhood is really like.
Most of you probably more familiar with the recent Spike Jonze/Dave Eggers movie adaptation of "Where The Wild Things Are," an adaption that very much pleased Sendak, and captured, to his mind, the rough, confused, angry, hopeful, raw spirit of the book.
Pictured above is actor James Gandolfini, who voiced Carol in the film, portraying the rough, confused, angry, hopeful, raw spirit of the book.
So much of children's and teen's entertainment panders stupidly to a politically correct notion of a sweet happy time bereft of difficulty or confusion. Which any eight year old who's had to live through a divorce, or any thirteen year old who has ever been afraid to take a shower in gym class because he feels like he's the only one who hasn't gotten pubes yet can tell you, is total bullsh*t.
Me, at 15, being all sad that I don't have pubes.
Being a kid is lovely, but it's tough. Being a teenager is even tougher. You're getting it from all sides when you're a teenager. Being told sex is evil and only for sinful dirty people by half the people around you, and being told you HAVE TO GET LAID RIGHT NOW OR YOU'RE A LOSER by the other half. Every adult has an opinion to force on you, and almost all those opinions are totally, stark raving crazy. As if growing up wasn't hard enough already.
Growing up feels nuts. Maurice Sendak believed in confronting that, not avoiding it. Staring hard at true hard things, sharing that knowledge. Grabbing fiercely onto our hand and saying, "It's OK, I know it's tough, but I feel it to. And I'm here."
Me, at 30, still being sad that I don't have pubes.
SMOSHers, Cherish the people in your life that have the wisdom, courage, and kindness to be honest with you about what it's like to be alive. How great it can be, how full to bursting full of joy, and how truly hard. Cherish the people that tell you the truth: that for all their opinions and ideas about what you're "supposed to do," they are just as confused, and stumbling through this life thing as you are. Those people are few and far between. And they make all the difference.
Goodnight, Maurice. You will be missed.
What are some crappy things about being a teenager? Let us know in the comments!