Maurice Sendak had this idea that everyone (children especially) had a wild side, aching to get out. I’m not saying he’s right or wrong, but every time I watch the Discovery Channel and watch a lion tearing into a gazelle, I feel a hunger.

There was a movie adaptation of Where The Wild Things Are, recently. It came out the day after my birthday and I wanted to see it but I never did. I think I was a bit scared that the movie would be ridiculous as they so often are. When I was a kid, my dad read me the book and I liked it a lot but I never believed those Things (with a capital T) were particularly Wild (with a capital W, no less). Even when I was 3 or 4, I knew when people were trying to pull one over on me.

The truth is, everyone is a bit wild on the inside. There is something clamoring to get out of us that we just can’t let out in modern society. We’re all so bottled up and tightly controlled. I guess that’s okay, but we need to be able to let things out somehow. For myself and for Max, the main character of Sendak’s story, the imagination was a great way to escape anger and frustration, turning that negativity into something beautiful and interesting.

Maybe The Wild Things hit me in some special way when I was a child. Maybe it made an impression I can’t quite shake. As silly as it is, I think Maurice Sendak made a good point about that wild side as well as our need to cope with it, in just a few short pages.

That’s the best part about stories. Even if you don’t know it, they can make an impression, change the way you look at things. Someday maybe I can do that for people too.