Free shipping over $99 | Interest Free *no credit check* financing is available!

Iconic Children’s Book Characters ‘Frog and Toad’ Were Totally Gay

by Rob Smith June 01, 2016

2g

The author of Frog and Toad and his most famous creations were gay, and we’re pretty sure you’re rethinking your entire childhood.

The New Yorker profiled author Arnold Lobel’s young days in New York, first working in the advertising industry before crossing over into illustrating and writing children’s books, then creating the Frog and Toad series around the time he met his wife Anita Kempler.

Related: The Boy Who Cried Fabulous, And Other Books My Son C.J. Loves

New Yorker writer Colin Stokes had a conversation with Lobel’s adult daughter Adrianne, and she thinks there was more to Frog and Toad than meets the eye:

Adrianne suspects that there’s another dimension to the series’s sustained popularity. Frog and Toad are “of the same sex, and they love each other,” she told me.It was quite ahead of its time in that respect.” In 1974, four years after the first book in the series was published, Lobel came out to his family as gay. “I think ‘Frog and Toad’ really was the beginning of him coming out.”

Further examination of some of the Frog and Toad stories proves her theory may not be so farfetched:

Take, for instance, the story “Alone,” from “Days with Frog and Toad,” in which Toad goes to Frog’s house to visit him but finds a note on the door that reads, “Dear Toad, I am not at home. I went out. I want to be alone.” Toad begins to experience a little crisis: “Frog has me for a friend. Why does he want to be alone?” Toad discovers that Frog is sitting and thinking on an island far from the shore, and he worries that Frog isn’t happy and doesn’t want to see him anymore.

But, when they meet (after Toad falls headfirst into the water and soaks the sandwiches he’s made for lunch), Frog says, “I am happy. I am very happy. This morning when I woke up I felt good because the sun was shining. I felt good because I was a frog. And I felt good because I have you for a friend. I wanted to be alone. I wanted to think about how fine everything is.” In the end, the trials of their relationship are worth bearing, because Frog and Toad are most content when they’re together.

Lobel died from AIDS-related complications in 1987, and Adrianne laments not only his death, but what it took from literature:

“He was only fifty-four, think of all the stories we missed.”

The piece is a great read, and we highly recommend you check it out.

Your move, Peppermint Patty.

Related: Banned Book Week: 10 Books That Are Too Gay To Read!




Rob Smith
Rob Smith

Author


Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in Think

Only One Candidate Looked Presidential At The Debate. It Wasn’t The Orange One.

by JohnGallagher September 26, 2016

For most Americans, tonight’s debate was the most time they’ve ever spent with Donald Trump. With any luck, it filled them with horror. For sheer unhinged lunacy, Trump was hard to beat. He can’t ever admit that he makes a mistake, so he doubled down on his birtherism lies.  He denied saying things he was proven to [...]

Continue Reading →

It Only Took Twenty Minutes For Trump To Unleash His Dom Side

by JohnGallagher September 26, 2016

Well, that didn’t take long. Donald Trump decided that the way he proves he looks presidential is to start shouting over the woman in the room (and the African-American moderator). Unfortunately for him, Hillary isn’t a sub. If anything, she’s showing that she’s the dom here by goading Trump. Her line that he’s not paying any taxes [...]

Continue Reading →

Donald Trump Kicks Off The Debate By Thanking His Dad and The Housing Crisis

by JohnGallagher September 26, 2016

Donald Trump is off to a great start: he acknowledged that he was born with a silver spoon in his mouth and that he hoped to profit off the housing crisis.  And God bless Clinton for saying that Trump lives in his own reality. If by reality, you mean make-believe universe, that’s totally accurate.  

Continue Reading →