For those of you who know me even just a bit, this revelation is hardly a surprise.
Let me be more specific. I’m looney for ‘Looney Tunes’! Yes, those wonderful cartoons that I was fortunate enough to grow up watching and loving. I loved every character… Bugs, Daffy, Porky, Sylvester, Yosemite Sam… there’s too many to list! One of the great things about being a dad is having a excuse to watch these classic cartoons over and over with my kids. As if I would even need a reason! lol
There were several directors through all the LT episodes. But there was one constant… Mel Blanc. The voice behind almost every single character! He was known as ‘The Man of 1000 Voices” and could literally back up that title.
On July 10, 1989 Mel was admitted to the hospital for routine testing. After a bizarre and random fall, he suffered a stroke and passed away.
The tributes were fast and furious in coming, and all heartfelt. But the one that literally still brings a tear to my eye is the one that Warner Brothers, studio home to all the beloved characters, ran in just about every magazine on earth.
On stage in a solitary pool of light is a microphone. Gathered to one side are 9 of Mel’s greatest characters… all with heads bowed and eyes closed in respect.
The caption is a single word.
In a mere moment, their voices were stilled. It took literally years to even dare to begin to find the voices to bring these characters back to life. And it took several voices… when before it only took the one.
As a writer of sorts, being speechless is sometimes a fact of life. To look at the blank page and to have nothing to say is.. well… terrifying!
But Bono of U2, that glorious prophet of modern culture, has this to say about that. If you have nothing to say, then write about that!
It’s been a speechless week.
What does it mean when I’m speechless?
Life is filled with millions of moments… those spaces in time for us to inhabit. The now… this moment. And in every moment, choices are made. Go left? Go right. Eat heathy? Eat a pizza (a whole pizza)… lol.
I have a ‘songlet’ that will one day show up on my next record (a few more million moments to wait on that one, apparently). It’s just a snippet of a thought:
In every life
A choice is made
To live in hope
Or let fear reign
You sent us Hope
On Christmas Day
Grace wrapped in flesh
Love came to stay
It’s all too easy to let the millions of moments slip by… and to slide to the place where fears come from. Before you know it, Fear has been crowned and is the reigning ruler of your life.
But it only takes a choice to dethrone the despot. Hard choices, followed by tough times.
But thank God that Christ paved the way on this path. He is ultimately the source of hope and peace and love and mercy.
And he cared enough for me to love me, even in the moments I would recall and recant… the moments when I so grieve the people I love that heartache could be the only consequence.
He saw that coming too. And there’s Grace for that moment.
Is it any wonder that I’m speechless..?
“What shall I return to the Lord
for all his goodness to me?
I will lift up the cup of salvation
and call on the name of the Lord.
I will fulfill my vows to the Lord
in the presence of all his people.”
There are many voices in this world.
It only takes the One is bring us back to life, and to give us back our voice.