Do you want to dress me up, darling? Go ahead, just CLICK HERE to go to the Stardoll website and make me look hot.
“I am as gay as a daffodil, dear.” — Freddie Mercury
Freddie, the gander, is as sweet as can be. He’s meticulous about his performances and his appearance. No one can ruffle his feathers, so to speak. I’ve seen him trip on several occasions, sometimes in the mud while getting in or out of his porcelain bathtub, or while too busy showing off to notice the goofus dog lying on the floor in front of him. But he always bounces back quickly and as if it was all part of the show. You’d hardly know he stumbled and in a few minutes you’d be wondering if you’d seen him stumble at all.
Lately, around this something of a substitute Garden Lodge Freddie lives at during his current reincarnation as a goose, the question of whether or not he prefers men or women has come up. At a random moment of morning in the living room I asked my roommate E. to get down on the floor like he’s a goose and let’s see if Freddie is interested.
“No way!” E. Said.
I don’t blame him at all. We’ve already seen enough to establish Freddie’s prowess is directed toward men. Not ducks. Not other geese. Mostly, a certain young man named E. who doesn’t fit the profile of men the late Freddie Mercury found attractive. E. doesn’t ride a motorcycle or have a mustache and clean cut, short dark hair like Jim Hutton. Nope. E. is young and slender with long blondish hair.
Freddie doesn’t care. Last spring he made it a habit to spring into action on nights when E. came home late from work and Freddie and I were in our basement room listening to Queen. Freddie’s favorite activity to date is serenading E. to the song “Body Language”. E. would sit at the bottom of the stairs while Freddie strutted back and forth, arching his neck and his tail at the same time so his little white bum became rounded and he appeared taller as he flirted.
But finally Freddie approached E. a bit too close for comfort, acting as if E.’s knee was a step up to his lap. As he attempted to climb E., Freddie extended one wing and when E. wiggled to get away, Freddie let out an annoyed, “Uuuuuuhhh! Uuuuuuhhh!” sound, which in Freddie-goose means, “Come back here, darling!”
Mary Austin is reported as having told Freddie from the start, at the point when he first approached her after their extended relationship to tell her he was bi, that he was gay, as quoted here in an article from the UK’s Daily Mail:
Gazing down at her lap, Mary says softly: ‘I’ll never forget that moment. Being a bit naive, it had taken me a while to realise the truth. Afterwards he felt good about having finally told me he was bisexual. Although I do remember saying to him at the time, “No Freddie, I don’t think you are bisexual. I think you are gay.”’
Neither E., I or Freddie care whether or not he’s attracted to men, women or ducks, actually. We were just curious what he’d do when faced with choices. As a gander he definitely prefers E. over anyone else in the room. Perhaps that will change from time to time. I doubt anyone will let him go very far.
That having been said, Freddie may be a bit lonely at times, I think. When he stays the night in the house and wakes up in the morning, he spends a good deal of time looking at himself in the mirror. I wonder if he’s reflecting on the lyrics to “Somebody to Love”.
Can anybody find me somebody to love?
Each mornin’ I get up I die a little
Can barely stand on my feet
Take a look in the mirror and cry
Lord what you’re doing to me
I have spent all my years in believin’ you
But I just can’t get no relief, Lord
“O, I hate the cold. It is probably why I returned as a goose, darling. Now, I can never be cold. Just think of it–permanent goose down. And I’m lucky I’m not that kind of goose–a Christmas goose. Makes me shudder to think of it.” — Freddie Goose, November 1st, 2014.
Why do you love Christmas so much, Freddie?
“Why, I love giving little gifts, of course. Why else? You can’t have Christmas without gifts. Even when I was a human, that’s why I loved Christmas. They don’t have to be expensive gifts, darling. Doesn’t everyone like a thoughtful little gift?” — Freddie Goose, November 1st, 2014.
And Freddie Mercury the man, from FREDDIE MERCURY: HIS LIFE, IN HIS OWN WORDS:
“I’ll tell you a good example. The other day Mary gave me a wonderful present that I haven’t seen before. It’s something that nobody else would think of, and it might be totally useless for you, but it’s something from somebody who cares and that’s what matters. She gave me this little gift that she went out of her way to arrange. It was the newspaper of the day that I was born — so you can actually read about what was going on when you were born. It was The Times, September 5th, 1946. And she also got me 1846, which was wonderful. I thought that was a lovely little treat — just a little something. There’s reams and reams of paper and it was wonderful. She said, “This’ll keep you busy, dear. You can read it while you’re on the throne.” I like to read when I’m having a crap.”
During his life as a rock star, Freddie Mercury had a love for antiques, particularly Louis XIV furniture and Japanese art: vases, kimonos, lamps, paintings. In life Freddie was quoted saying:
“People are the main thing, but I have to be surrounded by something, even if it’s just object d’art. So, I collect a lot, and my whole house is filled with beautiful Japanese art and antiques. That’s also why I want lots of fish, lots of cats. I suppose it’s a sort of shy outlook.” From FREDDIE MERCURY: HIS LIFE, IN HIS OWN WORDS.
For this is something I can relate to since the day I can remember–some time in early childhood. Collecting and preserving was a hobby of mine since the start, yet I don’t care for senseless clutter, i.e. a mess. I want to look around the room and find the ambiance relaxes me. I want to feel satisfied by what my eyes take in. Only then can I truly feel content. If the room is a jumbled mess, if everything is dirty or there are piles of papers, clothing or things are not in place, it bothers me.
There are many collectors in my family. Rock collectors. Antique collectors. When I was little I collected Breyer horses and displayed them, spotless and proud, on a shelf that took up an entire wall in my room. When they couldn’t be displayed, my grandma helped me wrap them up and store them in boxes so they wouldn’t get broken. I still have them today, but I do not feel my home is big enough to display them properly as they would need a certain room buried somewhere in the house, a room with certain decor. As it is in my home, I feel it would be tacky to display them. With limited space, only certain items can be visible.
Imagine having 20 foot ceilings. The grandeur and elegance of the decor would have to be large to match such surroundings. I suppose for Freddie Goose the new Garden Lodge (temporary) has high ceilings given he’s only about two and half feet tall.
At one time Freddie Mercury said:
“There are times when I wake up in the morning and I think, “My God, I wish I wasn’t Freddie Mercury today!” I’m in the public eye whether I like it or not, but I don’t want everything I do to be made public. I’m a virgo, I’m like Greta Garbo, I want to be left alone. I am a bit reclusive but it’s not a calculated thing. I like to be alone and shut myself off with my friends, but I’d hate to be on a desert island. I would loathe that. I do like people around me but I like them in my environment. I’ve got all my friends that come to me and maybe it’s a very selfish thing to do, but it’s a wonderful treat for me.” — Freddie Mercury, from FREDDIE MERCURY: HIS LIFE, IN HIS OWN WORDS.
I admit to being the same way: I do like people around me, but I like them in my environment. Yes. I love to entertain people in my home. One of my favorite things to do. And I love to have fun–in my home. C’est vrai!
I also love “little something” gifts. The real treats. The special somethings someone who loves you might see and they know it’s “just right” and it’s really for you and you only. Those gifts are never forgotten. As the years go by, meaning is only added and you are reminded of so many wonderful times.
Are you preparing for Christmas? (Freddie says, I hope, darlings, you will skip on having goose.) Do you like to make gifts or do you lavish your loved ones in purchased finery? What has been the most perfect Christmas of your life so far?
Freddie wants to know.
Genuine friends are rare. They can be counted on the fingers of one hand. Who is a real friend? A real friend will love you unconditionally. He will stand by your side through all dangers. He will never lie to you. He will never covet your wealth, neither your intellectual wealth nor your material wealth. He will remain loyal to you beyond death. Freddie Mercury had plenty of false friends. They made him feel just as lonely as jealousy, envy and hatred did. All of this tested his strength. Freddie survived with the help of his own sense of humor! It was a huge help and never deserted him. (The Story of Farrokh Bulsara Alias Freddie Mercury, by Henriette Sadler©, English translation by Renée von Paschen ©2011, from the website: FMQ, http://www.mercury-and-queen.com/freddiemercurystoryenglish.htm.)
”It may sound strange, but one of the things people never noticed was that he was unbelievably modest and shy. Freddie loved to be in love. In his best time he would write a song in a few minutes, but when he was in love, it was even faster. When he was depressed, he couldn’t write a thing, and really, there aren’t any truly sad Queen songs. Even the most moving ballads aren’t sad. Although many people say that lyrics of “The Show Must Go On” are quite scary, I think it is also a very optimistic and positive song.”
Reinhold Mack, ex-producer of Queen Also from FMQ, http://www.mercury-and-queen.com/freddiemercurystoryenglish.htm.)
Ready, Set, Done
Today, write about anything — but you must write for exactly ten minutes, no more, no less.
Last night’s dream was amazing and stimulated by a Writing 101 assignment in which description took precedence. My step-aunt, a psychology major at the time, told me back when I was a teen that dreams can be altered, that if I thought about what I wanted to dream about I could control elements of the dream–even stop the dream in its tracks and say, “Hey, wait a minute!” The same day she told me this, I dreamt a demon was chasing me on skis and I stopped and said, “You can’t get me!”
That was that. No more demon. From then on, actually, I did all the chasing in my dreams; I was a demon annihilator.
Dreams lately have been nightly and vivid. Many of them have kept me restless. In slumber last night I found myself at 1 Logan Place just like I’d written about in Day 1 of Writing 101: A Room with a View. Accompanied by my maternal sister E., we were outside the green door with fans’ scribble on its face and the surrounding wall. For some reason I tried the door handle and it opened up to the garden where we stepped inside.
The dream was entirely about Mary, the love of Freddie’s life. She is the person who resides at Garden Lodge, the one Freddie gave his assets to and I have a strong feeling this is because he knew she loved him like no one else ever could or would. I am intimately familiar with a similar situation, a bittersweet, unrequited love that can never be reconciled due to the death of one partner. Yet, Mary’s love for Freddie, and vice versa, was something else. Even if I don’t know whether Mary could move on fully or not, in my own life I am finally going forward. I know she married after Freddie, but it didn’t last. I cannot imagine being surrounded every day by this mansion and garden, the decorations much the same as Freddie had left them. The mixture of love and pain, grief and longing would be heavier than anything else.
My sister and I wandered around the garden while I told her what I knew, surprised to find there were boards leaning here and there against the inside brick walls and privacy screens absent from the top wrought iron fencing on their top half. Being in the garden penetrated my being with pangs of grief that I’ve experienced in other dreams about searching for someone (this person died in real life) I was told was still alive, but I could not find him.
We went up to the door. Even though I was dreaming, my feelings were intense and knocking was difficult. I didn’t know what to expect, but could hear television or radio inside. A curtain of shame loomed over me as I am not one to pester celebrities or bother anyone who wishes for privacy. I’m not an autograph beggar or selfie-with-celebs fan.
I really didn’t want Mary to think I was there to harass her.
A young man opened the door. In some way it was as if he’d expected us. The door swung wide and he stepped back, so we walked in. The foyer was warm. The colors on the walls rich and inviting. There was a wall ahead of us, but slightly to the right were a few steps leading up to an open dining area where Mary sat.
I asked to speak to Mary, but saw her subtly shake her head in the background.
But I held on.
I am inside, I thought. This may be my only chance to ever tell her how I feel.
“Please,” I said. “I want to share something with you, Mary.”
She smiled briefly and approached. She was elegant, slender and tall, compared to me. She looked tired.
We were alone together in a room. A bathroom, it seems. Every word I shared was laden with emotion, so much so that today I cannot recount the words exactly. I felt like a swollen reservoir bursting. How would I ever convince her of my genuine caring?
I told her, I am sure of this, about how beautiful she is and let her know that her pain is obvious to me, that I know of a similar pain. I thought I felt her loneliness.
We hugged. My insides were melting as if all the grief I’d felt in my past hit me at once.
She had an appointment to keep, so my sister and I walked with her out the garden and through the green door.
“May I write you a letter, Mary?” I said.
“That will be fine.”
From Wikipedia: “Love of My Life“ is a ballad by the English rock band Queen from their 1975 album A Night at the Opera. The song was written byFreddie Mercury about Mary Austin, with whom he had a long term relationship in the early 1970s. After performing the song in South America in 1981, the version from their live album Live Killers reached number 1 in the singles chart in Argentina and Brazil, and stayed in the charts in Argentina for an entire year.
Well, I’m writing, aren’t I?
Some may know how difficult I’ve been about getting myself to write over the years. I’ve mentioned not being able to “find myself again” or that “something inside me had died” at about the age of thirteen when shit went really awry. I definitely lost something way back then. I’d been writing full-length kids’ stories in spiral bound notebooks, attending the Young Writers’ Conferences every year, being the chosen author in my class whose work was bound for the school library check-out. Then, I flat-lined, began writing silly rhyming poems about jellybeans and unrequited love. It’s like I lost it–whatever it was–that caused me to have any imagination whatsoever.
And then I went off and studied things like accounting, E-commerce, business management. Now, if that didn’t kill the last creative spark, I don’t know what could have. More death? More bills? The worst breakup, even more death, blaming myself for it all? Maybe I was trying to prove myself. Maybe I was bitter. I was definitely angry and driven throughout my twenties, then depressed, apathetic and hopeless during my thirties. Now, here I am. I have a muse and I am going deep inside. I’m like a butterfly emerging from a cocoon. There’s no other way to put it. Freddie Mercury’s life, what I am allowed to know of his personal life and what I think I am intuiting from even the unspoken, is part of my journey.
Take a look at artists everywhere and you will find that so-and-so was influenced by so-and-so.
For once, it seems, I am alone again (not in the lonely sense) much like I was at pre-thirteen. I have my own space. My animals. It’s up to me how I keep my space. I don’t have to give-in to the demands of someone who is not willing to put out the effort, but willing to wine & dine, then take and take.
Each day goes by and I see more evidence that I’m back. That me person who had dreams, fantasies, inspiration. A person who could play and imagine and put it all down on paper.
Did I get so lost in what I thought I had to prove to others?
Perhaps. I definitely set out to prove myself when I reached adulthood. I felt I’d lived in the shadow of condemnation where I could do not right no matter how by-the-book I tried to be. All the while there was a part of me that strictly denied any affiliation with the Joneses. I need the right reason. My reason. Not situation, or ease of agreement. I won’t keep in a situation where my future will spoil. I don’t think anyone should. Not for longevity in relationship. Not to prove themselves to no one. Not for addiction. People have to climb mountains and face all types of weather in order to find Truth. This means a person must encounter all forms of disappointment, even the most trying, and bounce back somehow. Once depression or drugs or apathy takes hold, life seems insurmountable, but this can be reversed by some means. Each must find his or her door and this is personal, does not depend solely on any one interpersonal relationship or the dependence upon another person.
Tell me I’m obsessed with Freddie Mercury like it’s a bad thing.
It’s okay if you don’t get it. All that matters is that I do. And I’m not afraid.
As Freddie himself would say, “I don’t give a shit, darling.”
And that’s true. I don’t.
This is wonderful for me, this sudden appearance of Freddie Mercury in my life in February of 2013. While he’d been out there all the while, on the radio, videos, his memory living on, I’d never noticed. Sure, I’d watched Wayne’s World before and I knew of “Bohemian Rhapsody”, the song, but only in passing had I heard it. The song meant nothing and I knew not of Queen, except that a band called Queen existed.
(O, there are so many layers to my journey of recent times, of Freddie, both goose and frontman, of mice and gardening and cooking and books and life-changing lessons.)
I will tell the story of how I found Freddie Mercury (and Freddie the goose) in another entry. For now, let me share more about obsession vs. muse/inspiration.
Inspiration: Merriam-Webster’s definition of inspiration is:
: something that makes someone want to do something or that gives someone an idea about what to do or create : a force or influence that inspires someone
: a person, place, experience, etc., that makes someone want to do or create something
: to think about something carefully or thoroughly
Obsession: Let’s say I feel a compulsion to wash my hands. So I wash my hands. Then I walk to the door to leave and I feel compelled to wash my hands again, because I don’t feel my hands are clean enough. I just don’t. So I go back and wash my hands again. Then I touch the door handle. The compulsion is so strong, I must wash my hands again. So I do, even though my skin is raw from scrubbing, because I cannot get my hands clean enough. Water isn’t enough. Regular soap isn’t enough. I have to get my hands clean. And what now that I’ve rubbed the skin off in places? Bacteria will get inside and I will get sick. So I disinfect my hands. I’d better wear gloves for a while to protect my hands from germs, since I’ve rubbed them raw.
And this goes on and on, let’s say. And I struggle. It’s disabling. Nothing good comes of it. Each time I wash my hands, they do not become cleaner, but raw and, eventually, bloody. It is a compulsion and my fear of germs, an obsession that drives me to wash until I need medical treatment, both psychological and physical.
Some people enjoy watching baseball. They work five days per week and then they sit on the couch nearly the entire weekend and watch baseball. Some people play golf. All they want to do, weather permitting, is play golf. Some people have to watch the next episode of a sitcom the minute it airs. They cannot miss it. People read People Magazine, religiously, and they talk about what all the celebrities are wearing and what they are doing. Heck, there’s even some section in there about “Celebrities do it, too” or something like that. As if the regular folks cannot believe stars take shits. But, people want to know and have a hunger for what is going to happen next in the world around them, or what Dick or Jane says on a TV program, how far they can hit a ball at golfing, whether or not the Boston Red Sox will win a playoff.
We all have something we are doing. Well, mostly. I admit to being depressed enough before that I wasn’t doing what I really wanted to do. Strangely, during these blue times I found myself sitting in front of a television and eating unhealthily. For a lot of people that may be the norm, it seems. But that’s not good enough for me. It just isn’t. I had to recognize and take responsibility for that.
I cannot accept a mediocre life. I cannot repeat the life I’ve lived for the past decade. I had nothing to hold onto. All my efforts (eggs) were put in the flimsy baskets and these baskets tipped over. I gathered what I could, what was not fully broken, and I now see I can repair all the cracks in the eggs with solid gold. Perhaps no one else cared about the eggs like I did. To see my eggs tossed away and stomped, crushed my spirit, but I let it happen. Shit happens. I forgive myself and it’s easier to see a learning experience instead of disappointment.
Sometimes I get so low, I just don’t know, everything seems hopeless. That’s where I have been. I couldn’t get out of a situation I was in, or so evidence suggested at the time. I felt like I’d tried too hard, waited far too long, and….nothing mattered. I told myself I was going to do this or that, but I wasn’t doing anything…and then I got physically sick.
In the end what is it that I hold onto most?
Freddie Mercury. Why?
Why do you read scriptures or pray?
I can have it all, except I don’t worry about going to hell, darlings.
I, for once, see the appeal of turning to an outside source to find strength within. But, I still think the strength itself must come from within, except I needed inspiration, something, someone dependable, malleable and someone to whom I could relate? I hadn’t found this in relationships or any ideas or beliefs. Those had all fallen flat.
So when I was at my mother’s one afternoon, chatting, her television broadcast a man dressed in white at a piano, several plastic, half-full cups and Heineken bottles on top, I wondered why this man demanded my attention. Mostly, I dismiss whatever is on television and as far as music is concerned, I am pretty boring and tend to listen to the same artists over and over–one for a six month stint, then switch to another, then switch back to the previous artist. And I don’t listen to any Top 40 or radio.
Why this man? Why now?
I was curious. I wanted to know who he was, inexplicably, and badly. My first thought was that he resembled a cousin of mine who had committed suicide at age 19. I thought he looked like someone I could be related to and, since I am interested in genealogy, I naturally wondered where he was from, what was his name, and so on.
“You don’t know who that is?” my mother said. “That’s Freddie Mercury. He is a God!”
Maybe I am still seeking my mother’s approval. But I don’t think that’s it. To me the moment stands out like many other important moments, so vivid and meaningful I doubt, barring dementia, I will ever forget. There was a feeling in that moment, a compelling, strange feeling of elation that penetrated my mind.
I had to know more.
“Mercury,” I said. “Is he Greek?” (Some of us change our names, I am comfortably aware, to fit who we think we really are, our true persona, or to escape something. Of this I am clear.)
“No, he’s not Greek. I can’t remember where he’s from,” my mother said.
I later learned many people assumed he was a “British-born” rock star. That’s not what I saw at all. My intuition lent itself to the immediate recognition of someone spectacular who had a story, had moved a great distance from somewhere exotic. He was an enigma, I knew, before I even knew his name.
“Queen,” my mother said. “You’ve heard of Queen?”
“O, wow. Really? I’ve heard of Queen, and Bohemian Rhapsody, but I know nothing of them.”
So, I sat down and began searching my gadget for Google hits as we do these days. It’s a Machine’s World, after all.
And that searching of facts and photos and stories carried on for quite some time, leading to the purchase of several biographies, and strange coincidences began to occur for which I had no explanation other than that I was noticing things I hadn’t noticed before. As if I’d learned a new word and then that word was everywhere, as if I’d summoned it. But, as always, I remained skeptical.
I became “insatiable in appetite” for anything about Freddie and the results were fascinating enough to produce those pungent adrenalin rushes some of us information- or book-lover types experience when we learn or read the right passage.
The right passage.
The right to pass. The right to carry on.
“Mamaaaaaaa…..Oooo-oo-ooooo-ooo…I don’t wanna die…”
And how many times had I wanted to die? Hopeless, bottomless, nobody-loves-me pit of utter despair. Rock bottom. Living in a mind of shit. Hating where I was at, being swallowed by who I was with, allowing myself to slither beneath the carpet and get walked on like a piece of fish dropped at a Sunday market in Sicily.
I needed a wake-up call, a lens, mine so dirty I had become blind in much the same way a frog boiled slowly doesn’t know he’s being cooked alive.
So, I say, whatever it is–I HAD TO FIND IT!
If someone refers to my interest in Freddie Mercury as an obsession, well, it is more than that, way more. This is something diabolical that I am acting on.
Freddie Mercury is my inspiration. This blog is evidence. And it all started so long ago, in my ancestors’ bones, in their travels and in their brains, wants, loves and tragedies. I take what lies within seriously, and, yes, there is a destiny waiting to be fulfilled. I can get on with it, or I can stagnate. The choice is mine.
There is much more waiting. Not just for this blog. Ideas much bigger.
And, darlings, I’m no Lady GaGa or Katy Perry.
‘There are times when I wake up in the morning and I think, “My God, I wish I wasn’t Freddie Mercury today!” I’m in the public eye whether I like it or not, but I don’t want everything I do to be made public. I’m a virgo, I’m like Greta Garbo, I want to be left alone. I am a bit reclusive but it’s not a calculated thing. I like to be alone and shut myself off with my friends, but I’d hate to be on a deserted island. I would loathe that. I do like people around me but I like them in my environment. I’ve got all my friends that come to me and maybe it’s a very selfish thing to do, but it’s a wonderful treat for me.’ — Freddie Mercury, b. September 5, 1946 – d. November 24, 1991.