So there I was, last Friday, asking the librarian to direct me towards the Juvenile Picture Book section of my local library, and feeling pretty damn good about doing it. I was excited to be taking a little trip in the way-back machine to some of my earliest childhood memories found in the pages of an American classic by Maurice Sendak. Not coincidentally, it was being released that same day, reincarnated as a major motion picture by the same name, 'Where The Wild Things Are'. A few weeks earlier, trailers for the movie began running, and this trip to the library was set in stone.
The Wild Rumpus
After a quick hunt of the shelves marked with a giant 'S' (the juvie picture book catalog only requires single letters) the book was nowhere to be found. Disappointment struck as I felt a childlike pout creeping over my face that also produced a sense of Déjà Vu ... I was 8 again, and I just ran out of bb's for my pump action Daisy air gun while fully intact Coke bottles mocked me from atop the rock pile ... the kiddie section librarian must've noticed, and snapped me out of it, asking if I needed help. A few moments later, she produced a copy from the hold shelf. 'That's it! That's the one!', was all I could come up with, as most of my mind was already tripping back in time again. 'Let the wild rumpus start'!
As much as I wanted to pull the cover open, I was going to wait and show it to my brother, Brooks. He, too, would share my same excitement. Ahh ... the simple things in life. I ran into him later at our parent's house, and together, we relived a lot of memories from three decades ago. Some were completely forgotten until he began leafing through the pages. School plays we did together based on the book. Building forts out of bed sheets. Running through the mountains of western Pennsylvania looking for wild things. Doing wild things. Being WILD.
My brothers and I are as as close if not closer than brothers can be, but this brought a lot of the 'why' we're so close full circle. That book ... that story, influenced us at a very young age to not only appreciate, but to seek out the wild things in this world, and to spend time with them, where they live. Just look around this site and you'll see. Wild Things is not a lengthy read ... as in a few minutes long, and it's printed in that really big, little kids font, but the pictures and the message ... the story. All told, it still kicks ass. It stands the test of time. It's what classics do. Thanks, Maurice.
With my bros today. Scott (left) and Brooks (right)
I've never been relied upon much for movie-going demographics, and I'll probably wait for the DVD to satisfy my curiosity of how it might translate in the movie adaptation by David Eggers and Spike Jonze. Brooks heard that Sendak gave the film his stamp of approval so I'll look forward to that pleasant distraction on some rainy night when there's not much else to do. In the meantime, I've been perfectly happy getting lost in the pages again with my brothers, Max and the Wild Things.