Monday, May 04, 2009

I Love Stephen Fry

It is entirely possible, I believe, that Stephen Fry is the cleverest person in my generation. I enjoy almost everything that he presents to his public, whether travelling around the USA in a London taxi (strangely, though, one with left-hand drive), or interviewing bipolar celebrities. There were a couple of podcasts that went on a bit too long, but otherwise I just love him.

I have not been moved to tears, however, until reading his article last week "Stephen Fry's letter to himself: Dearest absurd child". When he was 16, he wrote a letter to his adult self, and in this piece he replies to that letter. You may read the whole of it here. I believe it is an edited edition of a previous article, but I found it in the Guardian on Thursday. Anyway, read this at least:

" I finally know now, as I easily knew then, that the most important thing is love. It doesn't matter in the slightest whether that love is for someone of your own sex or not. Gay issues are important and I shall come to them in a moment, but they shrivel like a salted snail when compared to the towering question of love. Gay people sometimes believe (to this very day, would you credit it, young Stephen?) that the preponderance of obstacles and terrors they encounter in their lives and relationships is intimately connected with the fact of their being gay. As it happens at least 90% of their problems are to do with love and love alone: the lack of it, the denial of it, the inequality of it, the missed reciprocity in it, the horrors and heartaches of it. Love cold, love hot, love fresh, love stale, love scorned, love missed, love denied, love betrayed ... the great joke of sexuality is that these problems bedevil straight people just as much as gay. The 10% of extra suffering and complexity that uniquely confronts the gay person is certainly not incidental or trifling, but it must be understood that love comes first. This is tough for straight people to work out."

In this article he is not just clever, he is real. I am pretty close to adoring him :-)

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