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Re: [aloha-donblanding] Re: Curious

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  • Jackie Collins
    Dear Keith ~ That was quite the most beautiful description of DB that I have read of late. You describe his being an artist with all the sincerity of an
    Message 1 of 14 , Sep 13, 2007
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      Dear Keith ~
      That was quite the most beautiful description of DB that I have
      read of late. You describe his being an artist with all the sincerity of
      an open-minded and loyal follower of his work and his soul.

      Warmest Aloha, Jackie



      ----- Original Message -----
      From: keith2draw
      To: aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Thursday, September 13, 2007 5:41 PM
      Subject: [aloha-donblanding] Re: Curious


      Michael,

      This board has had conversations on this subject many times over the past 7-8 years, and
      the conclusion that we have reached is that we just don't know. He had a very public
      personna, but he was in fact a very private person. His close friends were very protective
      of his privacy and he lived in a time where sexual preferences were not openly talked
      about.

      He definately had girlfriends and was engaged to be married on at least three
      occasions...and did get married once, which ended in divorce after only a few years.

      He had male companions too, for lengths of time, which seem to be more intimate than
      would be normal for a mere friendship. They too didn't last very long though.

      So the feeling is that he was probably bi-sexual, but that he was not able to committ to
      relationships for more than a year or two.

      I have been researching Don personally for almost a decade now, and I have read
      hundereds of letters to and from him; read hundreds of articles and dozens of interviews;
      met and talked to people who knew him; and I can honestly say I have never seen any
      evidence that would point one way or another as to his sexual orientation.

      And the consensus amoung us is that it doesn't really matter one way or another anyway.
      He is defined by his verse, his art, and his many creative pursuits...and not by his love life,
      or lack thereof.

      Keith Emmons

      --- In aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com, "canoeist35" <canoeist35@...> wrote:
      >
      > I'm surprised to see that no one replied to my previous post
      > (below). Is there really nothing known by the DB aficionados in
      > this forum on such a fundamental aspect of his life? Or is this
      > possibly another case of people not wanting to discuss the subject?
      > That would seem the ultimate disrespect to DB, though, so I'm at a
      > loss on the silence here. Not one person had a reply to make on
      > this?
      >
      > Michael
      >
      >
      >
      > --- In aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com, "canoeist35"
      > <canoeist35@> wrote:
      > >
      > > This forum was suggested to me when I raised this general question
      > > during some discussions of Don Blanding's Vernonware designs on
      > > another board. I am curious about what, if anything, is known
      > about
      > > his broken engagement with Ruth Norton, and his divorce from the
      > > Binney woman (whose full name I forget right now). Reading
      > through
      > > the biographical material I've been able to find, including the
      > > timeline with all its details--plus a dozen or so of the poems--I
      > > did get occasional impressions of elements that were sometimes
      > parts
      > > of a closeted life. Is there anything definite known about Don
      > > Blanding's intimate relationships? He wrote so eloquently of
      > Hawaii
      > > not merely for its beauty, but also for its value as a refuge from
      > > the harsher world he had known. If someone were either homosexual
      > > or sexually ambivalent, the change from Oklahoma, say, to the
      > > tolerance and relaxed atmosphere he described in Hawaii would
      > > certainly have seemed that much more like paradise. Are there any
      > > known facts that would establish an answer to that issue quite
      > > plainly, one way or the other? It would certainly seem like there
      > > must be such facts on record somewhere. Yet the overall
      > impression
      > > I've received (to date) is one of pure mystery.
      > >
      > > Michael
      > >
      >





      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Linda Allred
      I, personally, don t see that it matters and wouldn t want to spend the time trying to figure it out. What he s given to the world says enough as to what kind
      Message 2 of 14 , Sep 13, 2007
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        I, personally, don't see that it matters and wouldn't want to spend the time trying to figure it out. What he's given to the world says enough as to what kind of man he was. Linda


        ----- Original Message ----
        From: keith2draw <keith2draw@...>
        To: aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Thursday, September 13, 2007 10:41:53 PM
        Subject: [aloha-donblanding] Re: Curious

        Michael,

        This board has had conversations on this subject many times over the past 7-8 years, and
        the conclusion that we have reached is that we just don't know. He had a very public
        personna, but he was in fact a very private person. His close friends were very protective
        of his privacy and he lived in a time where sexual preferences were not openly talked
        about.

        He definately had girlfriends and was engaged to be married on at least three
        occasions... and did get married once, which ended in divorce after only a few years.

        He had male companions too, for lengths of time, which seem to be more intimate than
        would be normal for a mere friendship. They too didn't last very long though.

        So the feeling is that he was probably bi-sexual, but that he was not able to committ to
        relationships for more than a year or two.

        I have been researching Don personally for almost a decade now, and I have read
        hundereds of letters to and from him; read hundreds of articles and dozens of interviews;
        met and talked to people who knew him; and I can honestly say I have never seen any
        evidence that would point one way or another as to his sexual orientation.

        And the consensus amoung us is that it doesn't really matter one way or another anyway.
        He is defined by his verse, his art, and his many creative pursuits...and not by his love life,
        or lack thereof.

        Keith Emmons

        --- In aloha-donblanding@ yahoogroups. com, "canoeist35" <canoeist35@ ...> wrote:
        >
        > I'm surprised to see that no one replied to my previous post
        > (below). Is there really nothing known by the DB aficionados in
        > this forum on such a fundamental aspect of his life? Or is this
        > possibly another case of people not wanting to discuss the subject?
        > That would seem the ultimate disrespect to DB, though, so I'm at a
        > loss on the silence here. Not one person had a reply to make on
        > this?
        >
        > Michael
        >
        >
        >
        > --- In aloha-donblanding@ yahoogroups. com, "canoeist35"
        > <canoeist35@ > wrote:
        > >
        > > This forum was suggested to me when I raised this general question
        > > during some discussions of Don Blanding's Vernonware designs on
        > > another board. I am curious about what, if anything, is known
        > about
        > > his broken engagement with Ruth Norton, and his divorce from the
        > > Binney woman (whose full name I forget right now). Reading
        > through
        > > the biographical material I've been able to find, including the
        > > timeline with all its details--plus a dozen or so of the poems--I
        > > did get occasional impressions of elements that were sometimes
        > parts
        > > of a closeted life. Is there anything definite known about Don
        > > Blanding's intimate relationships? He wrote so eloquently of
        > Hawaii
        > > not merely for its beauty, but also for its value as a refuge from
        > > the harsher world he had known. If someone were either homosexual
        > > or sexually ambivalent, the change from Oklahoma, say, to the
        > > tolerance and relaxed atmosphere he described in Hawaii would
        > > certainly have seemed that much more like paradise. Are there any
        > > known facts that would establish an answer to that issue quite
        > > plainly, one way or the other? It would certainly seem like there
        > > must be such facts on record somewhere. Yet the overall
        > impression
        > > I've received (to date) is one of pure mystery.
        > >
        > > Michael
        > >
        >




        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Mike Gothard
        Hi all, This has been a most intriguing dialogue, though seemingly one-sided until now. It s interesting that we discuss the minutest of minutia regarding Don
        Message 3 of 14 , Sep 14, 2007
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          Hi all,

          This has been a most intriguing dialogue, though seemingly one-sided until
          now. It's interesting that we discuss the minutest of minutia regarding
          Don - his life, his art, his habits, his history - and then we feign
          disinterest in this one area of his life as though a discussion would in
          some way tarnish his image. We spend time trying to figure out what he ate
          for breakfast on a trip to California on a specific day of the year; seems
          something as pervasive as his sexual orientation would not just be as
          important but even more so given the fact that it shaped him far more than
          whether he ate bran or blueberry muffins on Thursday, April 3, 1924. I
          agree that in the big scheme of things it really doesn't matter. But
          neither does so much else of what we speculate and research about his life.
          We all respect his work or we probably wouldn't ponder, diagogue, and lurk
          here searching for answers and points of interest if we were apt to pass
          judgment.

          With that said, thanks, Michael, for continuing to probe with academic
          integrity. And thanks, Keith, for shedding light on this and so many other
          facets of Mr. Blanding's life.

          Have a great weekend all,
          Mike


          ----- Original Message -----
          From: "Linda Allred" <linall9@...>
          To: <aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com>
          Sent: Friday, September 14, 2007 12:16 AM
          Subject: Re: [aloha-donblanding] Re: Curious


          > I, personally, don't see that it matters and wouldn't want to spend the
          > time trying to figure it out. What he's given to the world says enough as
          > to what kind of man he was. Linda
          >
          >
          > ----- Original Message ----
          > From: keith2draw <keith2draw@...>
          > To: aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com
          > Sent: Thursday, September 13, 2007 10:41:53 PM
          > Subject: [aloha-donblanding] Re: Curious
          >
          > Michael,
          >
          > This board has had conversations on this subject many times over the past
          > 7-8 years, and
          > the conclusion that we have reached is that we just don't know. He had a
          > very public
          > personna, but he was in fact a very private person. His close friends were
          > very protective
          > of his privacy and he lived in a time where sexual preferences were not
          > openly talked
          > about.
          >
          > He definately had girlfriends and was engaged to be married on at least
          > three
          > occasions... and did get married once, which ended in divorce after only a
          > few years.
          >
          > He had male companions too, for lengths of time, which seem to be more
          > intimate than
          > would be normal for a mere friendship. They too didn't last very long
          > though.
          >
          > So the feeling is that he was probably bi-sexual, but that he was not able
          > to committ to
          > relationships for more than a year or two.
          >
          > I have been researching Don personally for almost a decade now, and I have
          > read
          > hundereds of letters to and from him; read hundreds of articles and dozens
          > of interviews;
          > met and talked to people who knew him; and I can honestly say I have never
          > seen any
          > evidence that would point one way or another as to his sexual orientation.
          >
          > And the consensus amoung us is that it doesn't really matter one way or
          > another anyway.
          > He is defined by his verse, his art, and his many creative pursuits...and
          > not by his love life,
          > or lack thereof.
          >
          > Keith Emmons
          >
          > --- In aloha-donblanding@ yahoogroups. com, "canoeist35" <canoeist35@ ...>
          > wrote:
          >>
          >> I'm surprised to see that no one replied to my previous post
          >> (below). Is there really nothing known by the DB aficionados in
          >> this forum on such a fundamental aspect of his life? Or is this
          >> possibly another case of people not wanting to discuss the subject?
          >> That would seem the ultimate disrespect to DB, though, so I'm at a
          >> loss on the silence here. Not one person had a reply to make on
          >> this?
          >>
          >> Michael
          >>
          >>
          >>
          >> --- In aloha-donblanding@ yahoogroups. com, "canoeist35"
          >> <canoeist35@ > wrote:
          >> >
          >> > This forum was suggested to me when I raised this general question
          >> > during some discussions of Don Blanding's Vernonware designs on
          >> > another board. I am curious about what, if anything, is known
          >> about
          >> > his broken engagement with Ruth Norton, and his divorce from the
          >> > Binney woman (whose full name I forget right now). Reading
          >> through
          >> > the biographical material I've been able to find, including the
          >> > timeline with all its details--plus a dozen or so of the poems--I
          >> > did get occasional impressions of elements that were sometimes
          >> parts
          >> > of a closeted life. Is there anything definite known about Don
          >> > Blanding's intimate relationships? He wrote so eloquently of
          >> Hawaii
          >> > not merely for its beauty, but also for its value as a refuge from
          >> > the harsher world he had known. If someone were either homosexual
          >> > or sexually ambivalent, the change from Oklahoma, say, to the
          >> > tolerance and relaxed atmosphere he described in Hawaii would
          >> > certainly have seemed that much more like paradise. Are there any
          >> > known facts that would establish an answer to that issue quite
          >> > plainly, one way or the other? It would certainly seem like there
          >> > must be such facts on record somewhere. Yet the overall
          >> impression
          >> > I've received (to date) is one of pure mystery.
          >> >
          >> > Michael
          >> >
          >>
          >
          >
          >
          >
          > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          >
          >
          >
          > To Post a message, send it to: aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com
          >
          > To Unsubscribe, send a blank message to:
          > aloha-donblanding-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
          > Yahoo! Groups Links
          >
          >
          >
        • Bev Leinbach
          Mahalo, Well done Keith! Bev. _____ From: aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com [mailto:aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of keith2draw Sent: Thursday,
          Message 4 of 14 , Sep 14, 2007
          • 0 Attachment
            Mahalo,



            Well done Keith!



            Bev.

            _____

            From: aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com
            [mailto:aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of keith2draw
            Sent: Thursday, September 13, 2007 8:42 PM
            To: aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com
            Subject: [aloha-donblanding] Re: Curious



            Michael,

            This board has had conversations on this subject many times over the past
            7-8 years, and
            the conclusion that we have reached is that we just don't know. He had a
            very public
            personna, but he was in fact a very private person. His close friends were
            very protective
            of his privacy and he lived in a time where sexual preferences were not
            openly talked
            about.

            He definately had girlfriends and was engaged to be married on at least
            three
            occasions...and did get married once, which ended in divorce after only a
            few years.

            He had male companions too, for lengths of time, which seem to be more
            intimate than
            would be normal for a mere friendship. They too didn't last very long
            though.

            So the feeling is that he was probably bi-sexual, but that he was not able
            to committ to
            relationships for more than a year or two.

            I have been researching Don personally for almost a decade now, and I have
            read
            hundereds of letters to and from him; read hundreds of articles and dozens
            of interviews;
            met and talked to people who knew him; and I can honestly say I have never
            seen any
            evidence that would point one way or another as to his sexual orientation.

            And the consensus amoung us is that it doesn't really matter one way or
            another anyway.
            He is defined by his verse, his art, and his many creative pursuits...and
            not by his love life,
            or lack thereof.

            Keith Emmons

            --- In aloha-donblanding@ <mailto:aloha-donblanding%40yahoogroups.com>
            yahoogroups.com, "canoeist35" <canoeist35@...> wrote:
            >
            > I'm surprised to see that no one replied to my previous post
            > (below). Is there really nothing known by the DB aficionados in
            > this forum on such a fundamental aspect of his life? Or is this
            > possibly another case of people not wanting to discuss the subject?
            > That would seem the ultimate disrespect to DB, though, so I'm at a
            > loss on the silence here. Not one person had a reply to make on
            > this?
            >
            > Michael
            >
            >
            >
            > --- In aloha-donblanding@ <mailto:aloha-donblanding%40yahoogroups.com>
            yahoogroups.com, "canoeist35"
            > <canoeist35@> wrote:
            > >
            > > This forum was suggested to me when I raised this general question
            > > during some discussions of Don Blanding's Vernonware designs on
            > > another board. I am curious about what, if anything, is known
            > about
            > > his broken engagement with Ruth Norton, and his divorce from the
            > > Binney woman (whose full name I forget right now). Reading
            > through
            > > the biographical material I've been able to find, including the
            > > timeline with all its details--plus a dozen or so of the poems--I
            > > did get occasional impressions of elements that were sometimes
            > parts
            > > of a closeted life. Is there anything definite known about Don
            > > Blanding's intimate relationships? He wrote so eloquently of
            > Hawaii
            > > not merely for its beauty, but also for its value as a refuge from
            > > the harsher world he had known. If someone were either homosexual
            > > or sexually ambivalent, the change from Oklahoma, say, to the
            > > tolerance and relaxed atmosphere he described in Hawaii would
            > > certainly have seemed that much more like paradise. Are there any
            > > known facts that would establish an answer to that issue quite
            > > plainly, one way or the other? It would certainly seem like there
            > > must be such facts on record somewhere. Yet the overall
            > impression
            > > I've received (to date) is one of pure mystery.
            > >
            > > Michael
            > >
            >





            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • keith2draw
            Aloha Mike & Michael, You ve made good points, and they are all well taken. There are about 4-5 Blanding researchers who frequent this board, and we are all
            Message 5 of 14 , Sep 14, 2007
            • 0 Attachment
              Aloha Mike & Michael,

              You've made good points, and they are all well taken.

              There are about 4-5 Blanding researchers who frequent this board, and we are all busy
              piecing together his life from obscure newspaper accounts, magazine articles, long lost
              interviews and ebay ephemera. Blanding was after all born 114 years ago and has been
              gone for half a century. We do not have the luxury of having previously written and
              researched volumes of details on his life, such as you would already have for say someone
              like Thomas Edison, Edgar Allen Poe or Gertrude Stein (because, frankly, he wasn't as
              important as these folks). The people who knew Don well are now dead themselves. There
              are some old-timers that knew him in his later years...but obviously no-one alive who
              shared his early, developmental years.

              To us, the thrill of the hunt is as enjoyable as the actual body of work that Don left behind.
              So when one of us discovers a new clue (however small), and posts it on this board, it's the
              detective in us gloating about finding a long-lost detail of his life. We in no way mean to
              infer any importance to the clues (in the grand scheme of things) ...it's just fun to see little
              slices of his life from a distance through the binoculars of time [sorry, horrible cliche].

              Those of us who have been on this board from the beginning (Jan. 2000) have discussed
              many complex aspects of Don's life in-depth (such as his sexuality) ...but folks who have
              joined us in the last year or two will only see the lighter dialogue and assume everything is
              trivial on the board. I urge all newcomers to go back and read some of our older posts for
              more detailed talks that have already transpired.

              The bottom line is that to try and get to the "meat" of Don's life, his feelings, dreams,
              inclinations and quirks, we have to sort out all the finer details like where he lived, who he
              knew, and who he wrote to. That's all we have to go on for the moment. And if discovering
              that he had a bran muffin with Edgar Cayce on Thursday, April 3, 1924 leads to finding an
              entry in Edgar Cayce's diary that states Don made a sexual pass at him...well then there we
              have our proof!

              I think most of us are mature, open-minded adults and I for one feel that if Don was
              gay..."so what!" It wouldn't tarnish his image at all...it would just add to the interest. Most
              of us have expressed that opinion here. It's not disinterest that keeps us from discussing it
              (and as I said, we have talked about it in the past ad naseum) it's just that until we know
              for sure, one way or the other, it would just be conjecture. If he was gay, it would have had
              a huge impact on how he lived his life, who he trusted, how he separated his public
              personna of a big, strapping ladies-man poet who was respected by men as well, from his
              private, gentle, secluded life when not on the lecture circuit. But until we get the "smoking
              gun" letter or diary entry which reveals his sexual preference....we plug away on the
              research and try to build a profile of Don that is honest, sincere and revealing. It just takes
              time. Most of us have either 9-to-5 jobs, kids, grandkids, etc... which takes up the bulk of
              our time, and research has to wait for rare free time.

              I will say, this is the best dialogue we've had in a long time.

              Keith
            • Mike Gothard
              Hi Keith, Exactly! Thanks for the perspective. You re so right in that many of us have not been in on the discussions from years ago, even though we avail
              Message 6 of 14 , Sep 14, 2007
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                Hi Keith,

                Exactly! Thanks for the perspective. You're so right in that many of us
                have not been in on the discussions from years ago, even though we avail
                ourselves of the past posts. I dabble in restoring/collecting/using vintage
                fountain pens and feel the same frustration that I'm sure many of you
                experience when us "newbies" question or try to put two-and-two together for
                the first time. We forget the "cloud of witnesses" that have gone before us
                :)

                Actually, one of the reasons I lurk here (yes, I'm afraid I am a lurker as I
                fit squarely into your description of already having too many irons in too
                many fires) is because of the minutia and the passion with which you guys
                continue to search...it's facinating! I do the same in the world of
                fountain pens as well.

                Anyway, thanks, Keith, for your gracious response and thanks to all for
                allowing us dabblers to dabble here. This is a great group and I consider
                it a privilege to be part of the ongoing dialogue.

                Have a great weekend,
                Mike


                ----- Original Message -----
                From: "keith2draw" <keith2draw@...>
                To: <aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com>
                Sent: Friday, September 14, 2007 10:17 AM
                Subject: [aloha-donblanding] Re: Curious


                > Aloha Mike & Michael,
                >
                > You've made good points, and they are all well taken.
                >
                > There are about 4-5 Blanding researchers who frequent this board, and we
                > are all busy
                > piecing together his life from obscure newspaper accounts, magazine
                > articles, long lost
                > interviews and ebay ephemera. Blanding was after all born 114 years ago
                > and has been
                > gone for half a century. We do not have the luxury of having previously
                > written and
                > researched volumes of details on his life, such as you would already have
                > for say someone
                > like Thomas Edison, Edgar Allen Poe or Gertrude Stein (because, frankly,
                > he wasn't as
                > important as these folks). The people who knew Don well are now dead
                > themselves. There
                > are some old-timers that knew him in his later years...but obviously
                > no-one alive who
                > shared his early, developmental years.
                >
                > To us, the thrill of the hunt is as enjoyable as the actual body of work
                > that Don left behind.
                > So when one of us discovers a new clue (however small), and posts it on
                > this board, it's the
                > detective in us gloating about finding a long-lost detail of his life. We
                > in no way mean to
                > infer any importance to the clues (in the grand scheme of things) ...it's
                > just fun to see little
                > slices of his life from a distance through the binoculars of time [sorry,
                > horrible cliche].
                >
                > Those of us who have been on this board from the beginning (Jan. 2000)
                > have discussed
                > many complex aspects of Don's life in-depth (such as his sexuality) ...but
                > folks who have
                > joined us in the last year or two will only see the lighter dialogue and
                > assume everything is
                > trivial on the board. I urge all newcomers to go back and read some of our
                > older posts for
                > more detailed talks that have already transpired.
                >
                > The bottom line is that to try and get to the "meat" of Don's life, his
                > feelings, dreams,
                > inclinations and quirks, we have to sort out all the finer details like
                > where he lived, who he
                > knew, and who he wrote to. That's all we have to go on for the moment. And
                > if discovering
                > that he had a bran muffin with Edgar Cayce on Thursday, April 3, 1924
                > leads to finding an
                > entry in Edgar Cayce's diary that states Don made a sexual pass at
                > him...well then there we
                > have our proof!
                >
                > I think most of us are mature, open-minded adults and I for one feel that
                > if Don was
                > gay..."so what!" It wouldn't tarnish his image at all...it would just add
                > to the interest. Most
                > of us have expressed that opinion here. It's not disinterest that keeps us
                > from discussing it
                > (and as I said, we have talked about it in the past ad naseum) it's just
                > that until we know
                > for sure, one way or the other, it would just be conjecture. If he was
                > gay, it would have had
                > a huge impact on how he lived his life, who he trusted, how he separated
                > his public
                > personna of a big, strapping ladies-man poet who was respected by men as
                > well, from his
                > private, gentle, secluded life when not on the lecture circuit. But until
                > we get the "smoking
                > gun" letter or diary entry which reveals his sexual preference....we plug
                > away on the
                > research and try to build a profile of Don that is honest, sincere and
                > revealing. It just takes
                > time. Most of us have either 9-to-5 jobs, kids, grandkids, etc... which
                > takes up the bulk of
                > our time, and research has to wait for rare free time.
                >
                > I will say, this is the best dialogue we've had in a long time.
                >
                > Keith
                >
                >
                >
                >
                > To Post a message, send it to: aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com
                >
                > To Unsubscribe, send a blank message to:
                > aloha-donblanding-unsubscribe@yahoogroups.com
                > Yahoo! Groups Links
                >
                >
                >
              • canoeist35
                Keith, I appreciated your first reply and this additional post. I had read the timeline on your website line-by-line before I ever asked any questions about
                Message 7 of 14 , Sep 14, 2007
                • 0 Attachment
                  Keith, I appreciated your first reply and this additional post. I
                  had read the timeline on your website line-by-line before I ever
                  asked any questions about Don. Parts of the timeline seemed to fit
                  the classic "closeted" life--unfortunately for DB. So did some
                  aspects of the poems I read, plus some of the photos--just in my
                  opinion, of course. I am a little dubious about even the bi-sexual
                  aspect, personally, but I am a newbie on all this. I don't think
                  any of this diminishes or demeans Don Blanding in any way--if
                  anything, it only adds to the complexity and interest his life
                  presents, IMO. It may affect how some of the poetry needs to be
                  read, though. If I can venture one more thought, it seems worth
                  recollecting that he began as an ad man who knew how to craft an
                  image. Maybe he continued to feel he had to do that with some of
                  his poetry? In any event, his tenderness, humor, and decency come
                  pouring out of most of the poems and articles I have read. And,
                  later, his sadness, too. I get the impression DB's was far from a
                  simple story. My two cents here.

                  Michael



                  --- In aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com, "keith2draw"
                  <keith2draw@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > Aloha Mike & Michael,
                  >
                  > You've made good points, and they are all well taken.
                  >
                  > There are about 4-5 Blanding researchers who frequent this board,
                  and we are all busy
                  > piecing together his life from obscure newspaper accounts,
                  magazine articles, long lost
                  > interviews and ebay ephemera. Blanding was after all born 114
                  years ago and has been
                  > gone for half a century. We do not have the luxury of having
                  previously written and
                  > researched volumes of details on his life, such as you would
                  already have for say someone
                  > like Thomas Edison, Edgar Allen Poe or Gertrude Stein (because,
                  frankly, he wasn't as
                  > important as these folks). The people who knew Don well are now
                  dead themselves. There
                  > are some old-timers that knew him in his later years...but
                  obviously no-one alive who
                  > shared his early, developmental years.
                  >
                  > To us, the thrill of the hunt is as enjoyable as the actual body
                  of work that Don left behind.
                  > So when one of us discovers a new clue (however small), and posts
                  it on this board, it's the
                  > detective in us gloating about finding a long-lost detail of his
                  life. We in no way mean to
                  > infer any importance to the clues (in the grand scheme of
                  things) ...it's just fun to see little
                  > slices of his life from a distance through the binoculars of time
                  [sorry, horrible cliche].
                  >
                  > Those of us who have been on this board from the beginning (Jan.
                  2000) have discussed
                  > many complex aspects of Don's life in-depth (such as his
                  sexuality) ...but folks who have
                  > joined us in the last year or two will only see the lighter
                  dialogue and assume everything is
                  > trivial on the board. I urge all newcomers to go back and read
                  some of our older posts for
                  > more detailed talks that have already transpired.
                  >
                  > The bottom line is that to try and get to the "meat" of Don's
                  life, his feelings, dreams,
                  > inclinations and quirks, we have to sort out all the finer details
                  like where he lived, who he
                  > knew, and who he wrote to. That's all we have to go on for the
                  moment. And if discovering
                  > that he had a bran muffin with Edgar Cayce on Thursday, April 3,
                  1924 leads to finding an
                  > entry in Edgar Cayce's diary that states Don made a sexual pass at
                  him...well then there we
                  > have our proof!
                  >
                  > I think most of us are mature, open-minded adults and I for one
                  feel that if Don was
                  > gay..."so what!" It wouldn't tarnish his image at all...it would
                  just add to the interest. Most
                  > of us have expressed that opinion here. It's not disinterest that
                  keeps us from discussing it
                  > (and as I said, we have talked about it in the past ad naseum)
                  it's just that until we know
                  > for sure, one way or the other, it would just be conjecture. If he
                  was gay, it would have had
                  > a huge impact on how he lived his life, who he trusted, how he
                  separated his public
                  > personna of a big, strapping ladies-man poet who was respected by
                  men as well, from his
                  > private, gentle, secluded life when not on the lecture circuit.
                  But until we get the "smoking
                  > gun" letter or diary entry which reveals his sexual
                  preference....we plug away on the
                  > research and try to build a profile of Don that is honest, sincere
                  and revealing. It just takes
                  > time. Most of us have either 9-to-5 jobs, kids, grandkids, etc...
                  which takes up the bulk of
                  > our time, and research has to wait for rare free time.
                  >
                  > I will say, this is the best dialogue we've had in a long time.
                  >
                  > Keith
                  >
                • canoeist35
                  ... and lurk ... pass ... Exactly. Well said, Mike. Gaining knowledge of more of the facts of his life is not to judge Don Blanding in some negative way. It
                  Message 8 of 14 , Sep 14, 2007
                  • 0 Attachment
                    --- In aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com, "Mike Gothard"
                    <75vette@...> wrote:
                    > We all respect his work or we probably wouldn't ponder, dialogue,
                    and lurk
                    > here searching for answers and points of interest if we were apt to
                    pass
                    > judgment.

                    Exactly. Well said, Mike. Gaining knowledge of more of the facts of
                    his life is not to judge Don Blanding in some negative way. It is to
                    understand better. I don't think there is anything to fear from
                    knowing the truth--at least not in the case of DB! And I'm going to
                    do one of those no-no's, and maintain that Don Blanding would agree
                    with that sentiment. I appreciated reading your post.

                    Michael
                  • THOMAS MARKLE
                    Boy did I miss a lot of discussion.....I have 20 minutes on this computer, so......I liked Keith s response and others as well. Don s sexual persuasion is not
                    Message 9 of 14 , Sep 14, 2007
                    • 0 Attachment
                      Boy did I miss a lot of discussion.....I have 20 minutes on this computer, so......I liked Keith's response and others as well. Don's sexual persuasion is not the important piece we are researching. It is there and known but so what. I've interviewed several people in their 80's who said, "Oh, Don Blanding that gay boy from Waikiki, he was so well liked by everyone that no one cares what he is". That's a pretty accurate quote. He was a personality, wordsmith, artist and mooch. He was loved most anywhere he went. As researchers we uncover little bits of information that sometimes lead to other finds that lead to newer finds, so on and so forth. That's research. I met an antique dealer on Kauai that had some DB pottery and we got to talking and now she's interested in our site. She didn't know we were researching him and was really excited about it. What Cadia and the rest of us have done in 7 years is amazing as far as I'm concerned. Aloha to all...tj

                      keith2draw <keith2draw@...> wrote: Aloha Mike & Michael,

                      You've made good points, and they are all well taken.

                      There are about 4-5 Blanding researchers who frequent this board, and we are all busy
                      piecing together his life from obscure newspaper accounts, magazine articles, long lost
                      interviews and ebay ephemera. Blanding was after all born 114 years ago and has been
                      gone for half a century. We do not have the luxury of having previously written and
                      researched volumes of details on his life, such as you would already have for say someone
                      like Thomas Edison, Edgar Allen Poe or Gertrude Stein (because, frankly, he wasn't as
                      important as these folks). The people who knew Don well are now dead themselves. There
                      are some old-timers that knew him in his later years...but obviously no-one alive who
                      shared his early, developmental years.

                      To us, the thrill of the hunt is as enjoyable as the actual body of work that Don left behind.
                      So when one of us discovers a new clue (however small), and posts it on this board, it's the
                      detective in us gloating about finding a long-lost detail of his life. We in no way mean to
                      infer any importance to the clues (in the grand scheme of things) ...it's just fun to see little
                      slices of his life from a distance through the binoculars of time [sorry, horrible cliche].

                      Those of us who have been on this board from the beginning (Jan. 2000) have discussed
                      many complex aspects of Don's life in-depth (such as his sexuality) ...but folks who have
                      joined us in the last year or two will only see the lighter dialogue and assume everything is
                      trivial on the board. I urge all newcomers to go back and read some of our older posts for
                      more detailed talks that have already transpired.

                      The bottom line is that to try and get to the "meat" of Don's life, his feelings, dreams,
                      inclinations and quirks, we have to sort out all the finer details like where he lived, who he
                      knew, and who he wrote to. That's all we have to go on for the moment. And if discovering
                      that he had a bran muffin with Edgar Cayce on Thursday, April 3, 1924 leads to finding an
                      entry in Edgar Cayce's diary that states Don made a sexual pass at him...well then there we
                      have our proof!

                      I think most of us are mature, open-minded adults and I for one feel that if Don was
                      gay..."so what!" It wouldn't tarnish his image at all...it would just add to the interest. Most
                      of us have expressed that opinion here. It's not disinterest that keeps us from discussing it
                      (and as I said, we have talked about it in the past ad naseum) it's just that until we know
                      for sure, one way or the other, it would just be conjecture. If he was gay, it would have had
                      a huge impact on how he lived his life, who he trusted, how he separated his public
                      personna of a big, strapping ladies-man poet who was respected by men as well, from his
                      private, gentle, secluded life when not on the lecture circuit. But until we get the "smoking
                      gun" letter or diary entry which reveals his sexual preference....we plug away on the
                      research and try to build a profile of Don that is honest, sincere and revealing. It just takes
                      time. Most of us have either 9-to-5 jobs, kids, grandkids, etc... which takes up the bulk of
                      our time, and research has to wait for rare free time.

                      I will say, this is the best dialogue we've had in a long time.

                      Keith






                      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
                    • kathysip3
                      ... and we are all busy ... articles, long lost ... ago and has been ... previously written and ... have for say someone ... frankly, he wasn t as ...
                      Message 10 of 14 , Oct 1, 2007
                      • 0 Attachment
                        --- In aloha-donblanding@yahoogroups.com, "keith2draw"
                        <keith2draw@...> wrote:
                        >
                        > Aloha Mike & Michael,
                        >
                        > You've made good points, and they are all well taken.
                        >
                        > There are about 4-5 Blanding researchers who frequent this board,
                        and we are all busy
                        > piecing together his life from obscure newspaper accounts, magazine
                        articles, long lost
                        > interviews and ebay ephemera. Blanding was after all born 114 years
                        ago and has been
                        > gone for half a century. We do not have the luxury of having
                        previously written and
                        > researched volumes of details on his life, such as you would already
                        have for say someone
                        > like Thomas Edison, Edgar Allen Poe or Gertrude Stein (because,
                        frankly, he wasn't as
                        > important as these folks). The people who knew Don well are now dead
                        themselves. There
                        > are some old-timers that knew him in his later years...but obviously
                        no-one alive who
                        > shared his early, developmental years.
                        >
                        > To us, the thrill of the hunt is as enjoyable as the actual body of
                        work that Don left behind.
                        > So when one of us discovers a new clue (however small), and posts it
                        on this board, it's the
                        > detective in us gloating about finding a long-lost detail of his
                        life. We in no way mean to
                        > infer any importance to the clues (in the grand scheme of things)
                        ...it's just fun to see little
                        > slices of his life from a distance through the binoculars of time
                        [sorry, horrible cliche].
                        >
                        > Those of us who have been on this board from the beginning (Jan.
                        2000) have discussed
                        > many complex aspects of Don's life in-depth (such as his sexuality)
                        ...but folks who have
                        > joined us in the last year or two will only see the lighter dialogue
                        and assume everything is
                        > trivial on the board. I urge all newcomers to go back and read some
                        of our older posts for
                        > more detailed talks that have already transpired.
                        >
                        > The bottom line is that to try and get to the "meat" of Don's life,
                        his feelings, dreams,
                        > inclinations and quirks, we have to sort out all the finer details
                        like where he lived, who he
                        > knew, and who he wrote to. That's all we have to go on for the
                        moment. And if discovering
                        > that he had a bran muffin with Edgar Cayce on Thursday, April 3,
                        1924 leads to finding an
                        > entry in Edgar Cayce's diary that states Don made a sexual pass at
                        him...well then there we
                        > have our proof!
                        >
                        > I think most of us are mature, open-minded adults and I for one feel
                        that if Don was
                        > gay..."so what!" It wouldn't tarnish his image at all...it would
                        just add to the interest. Most
                        > of us have expressed that opinion here. It's not disinterest that
                        keeps us from discussing it
                        > (and as I said, we have talked about it in the past ad naseum) it's
                        just that until we know
                        > for sure, one way or the other, it would just be conjecture. If he
                        was gay, it would have had
                        > a huge impact on how he lived his life, who he trusted, how he
                        separated his public
                        > personna of a big, strapping ladies-man poet who was respected by
                        men as well, from his
                        > private, gentle, secluded life when not on the lecture circuit. But
                        until we get the "smoking
                        > gun" letter or diary entry which reveals his sexual preference....we
                        plug away on the
                        > research and try to build a profile of Don that is honest, sincere
                        and revealing. It just takes
                        > time. Most of us have either 9-to-5 jobs, kids, grandkids, etc...
                        which takes up the bulk of
                        > our time, and research has to wait for rare free time.
                        >
                        > I will say, this is the best dialogue we've had in a long time.
                        >
                        > Keith
                        >
                        > I have to agree with everyone else, great dialogue, by far the most
                        >interesting of discussions I have read in along time. Thanks to all.
                        > I still love his work, be he a, a, or whatever.....

                        > Kathy
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