“Why Don’t You Get Things Started???”, the audience exclaimed.
First I have to say that I am overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and support in your comments, from friends old and new, celebrities, press, and fans worldwide. You have no idea how much that means to me. I keep tearing up as I try to read…my keyboard is a mess…. That might explain the technical difficulties that have prevented me from posting. Hopefully things are working and you are reading Thursday’s post now.
I understand and appreciate your range of emotions from sorrow to outrage as I have traveled that path myself. There are many things to tell you about all of this so in order to avoid writing boring dissertations, I am (hopefully) going to break this into more manageable and digestible bits. Plus, its Saturday and I have grass to mow…and laundry to do…
Since so many of you have responded to the last sentence of my first post, “failed in my duty to my hero”, please indulge me in adding a bit more to try to clarify.
I guess I always thought of the work I’ve done with the Muppets as tending my little portion of the garden, you know? But, in the big scheme of all the fear, negativity and really bad stuff in our world it seemed quite small and often ineffective.
I would read cynical comments to fan’s concerns like, ‘I don’t know what the big deal is. It’s just a bunch of puppets’ or ‘Get a life! Anybody can do a Kermit impression…’, and there was a part of me that couldn’t help taking it personally because I realized that, in my mind at least, they were trampling Jim’s legacy. I get pretty defensive when people go after those I care about.
While Jim was unassuming and graceful, he was also powerful in his gentleness and integrity. And those ‘cute little Muppets’ who so many think are for kids were, at their best, raucous, irreverent, outspoken and rebellious against injustice. So, when I speak of ‘failing’ in my duty, a big part of what I mean is this:
Do the Muppets matter in today’s world? Your comments – indicate that they do.
If they matter, then their history matters. Being at their best is vital. I believe characters like Kermit need to remain built on the sturdy foundation of their past in order to be progressive going forward. Integrity is everything, and that’s true for the Muppets, as well. As one of the last two active originators of the Muppets, I still have a big job to do before the next group can effectively step in.
It is no longer the Muppets if core values are lost or discarded. While I fought very hard for the integrity of the Muppets over the last twelve years largely to my own detriment, maybe I should have fought even harder and louder…and, yes, I would have likely been gone sooner… I fear I was the last samurai.