Fred Rogers wanted to use what he called a fabulous instrument, that small television screen, to share what has been described as his “deep and simple faith in a beautiful, noble, sacred life with kindness as its foundation.” Not just to grab their attention, but to teach children, and through them, all of us, how to be human.
Why is it that the stuff that happens to us in middle school sticks, making it harder to see middle schoolers as they are – the positives as well as the maddening and puzzling?
A tortured vocation over the centuries, fought for by women who I believe deserve what we might call secular canonization. They’ve been around since the start of human history: in 16th century Europe, elder females who were called Good Sibs, the original word for gossip, recognizing the function they served as community news bearers and literal life savers.
This is what Frida has become for me, across the years, and despite our outward differences: She a chain smoking, hard-drinking, non-Western, physically handicapped, Stalinist bisexual woman of color kindred spirit.