Sometime late last night, or, early this morning, something I never dreamed might happen, happened. Armistead Maupin chose to favor me. Technically, in digitechnosocialmedia-speak, he favorited the Tweet in which I’d written:
The Days of Anna Madrigal by Armistead Maupin. Oh Joy. Oh Tumult. Oh other worlds to which to escape. ThankYouThankYouThankYou
Armistead Maupin. Favorited. Me. I was reading The Days of Anna Madrigal late into the night. I was Tweeting out things she said. Like:
I don’t make up things, dear. The truth is hard enough to sell.
Oh my, I am really going to miss her. But, one of the advantages of aging is that one forgets, or, more accurately, begins to remember selectively, and, on occasion, with passionate reverence. Reading Days, the final book in the Tales of the City nonet, has wakened memories of all the decades during which I read the preceding eight volumes, and all the people I have been, known, loved and the places and times we lived together. I confess, last night, the great pleasure and joy of Days was accompanied by the melancholy of people and places I missed, and the thriving, real relationship in the book between Michael (Mouse) and Ben left me in a state of longing both for some of the relationships I did have, some I didn’t manage well, and, worst of all I think, those I will never manage now.
Then Armistead (I feel we are on a first name basis, now) Favorited me. And it was all better. Well, better anyway.
So, I can’t stay long because I am luxuriating in a day during which I have nowhere to be and no one for whom I need do anything. It is me, my books, my space heater, my coffee and tea, and leftover sushi & Chinese from last night’s delivery. And the final 13 Chapters of Armistead’s The Days of Anna Madrigal await me. I suppose part of the melancholy is that I think – I suspect – I am in my final few chapters; things feel as if they are ending, somehow – difficult to explain, and unlike with Tales of the City, alas, when I am finished these last few chapters I cannot go back to Book One and appreciate it again and better from the start.
Make your days count children. And now, the random photo essay inspired by my Anna Madrigal reveries.
When I find myself getting lost in the past, on days when tears are shed from unexpected memory assaults, I become melodramatic and illogical, and my frame of reference sends scud-plosions into my consciousness. I often am uncontrollably considering myself one or another Tennessee Williams fragile tragediennes; most often, Blanche DuBois. Last night, it was Miss Tallulah Bankhead’s Blanche I thought most like me in that, though the role was written for her, she turned it down (read about this here), and when at last she did play it, well, legend has it that it did not go well, although after reading a letter from Mr. Williams himself (CLICK HERE) – it seems that is not completely true.
Still, I think me, a Blanche done badly. And there is no Blanche without Stanley, and there has only ever been one Stanley.
I still love my Brando. Despite the fact that he was a self-centered ass, someone who seemed to love with overpowering passion and devotion – until it was no longer convenient for him, and then disregarded people with cruel and calculated disdain; despite all that, I still believe that there was a damaged core of vulnerability and light and good, true heart that meant to be kind, that meant to connect, but fear and an inability to trust devoured him and made him hide his true self behind facade after facade.
Which thoughts resulted in, “Stop with the gone and the dead, where are the here and the living?” And, somehow, there was Russell Tovey. Just because.
And this photo just LOOKED so Stanley-esque. But then, no sooner had I thought, “Oh, Russell” then did I remember that HE TOO, like Jeremy Jordan, is on the list of fellows that damn Jonathan Groff (about whom I bitterly complained yesterday, HERE) has gotten to do with-
– oh well and anyway, Russell is only 32 so – but wait, Mouse and Ben have decades age difference in Tales of the City and Isherwood and Bachardy did too, and, come to think of it, Armistead Maupin and his husband, Christopher Turner, also quite an age difference. I mustn’t be ageist. Well, I’m definitely not, but, maybe, wait … someone older. How about I’m the younger one. How about, Kevin Bacon?
He’s older than me. A little. Or, Keith Carradine. He’s older than me by more than a decade.
Oh, who am I kidding? No one is who I am going to be with. I’m on the last chapters. So, enough melancholy and if I’m going to fantasize about people who will never love or be with me – and better to fantasize then spend years pining in real life over real people – then it might as well be – well – here –