Ebenezer Scrooge? On the cover of the last regular issue of the year? The one that’s supposed to be celebratory? The one that’s about awards and accomplishments?
Yes. Because Ebenezer Scrooge is a celebratory cover figure. It’s an image of redemption and hope. It’s one that shows how complex people can be, how multi-faceted situations are, and how things can be so dark yet still lead into light.
In fact, I’d bet Ebenezer Scrooge would be considered for an award after finding new value in the people and conditions of that era. As Scrooge sees the errors in the ways of the past, he trips over himself to make up for them.
When we think of how people emerge as leaders, it’s often under less-than-ideal circumstances. Conditions are bad. Politics are oppressing. Someone is suffering. Things need changing. And from those negative elements come some positives. At some point, someone says “Bah! Humbug!” and takes up the cause to make things better. They start or join an organization. They fight for what they want and think is right. They help others. They inspire others. They make it their occupation to turn darkness into light, or they eke out just a little more time and energy on top of their jobs and families and other activities to make things better.
In this, my favorite issue of the year, we honor them with awards. I asked you who you wanted us to know about, you answered, and in these pages are some exemplary people who are making the rainbow community better for everyone. I am so proud to feature them. And I thank them. Congratulations to the Lavender Community Award winners. We are fortunate to have you.
Also, congratulations to the artists and organizations that are given some extra limelight in John Townsend’s Arts Year in Review. You have given us levity and beauty and heartbreak and learning opportunities all under the umbrella of entertainment this past year. You reflect our world and sometimes turn it inside out. This community, in particular, needs you. We need you to push the boundaries and expand how we view things. For this community especially, we need you to push the gender binary, just as indicated on our cover in Dan Norman’s photo of Ebenezer Scrooge being played by Charity Jones in A Christmas Carol at the Guthrie as Nathaniel Fuller’s understudy, as explained by E.B. Boatner later in this issue in his piece, “We Are All Ebenezer Scrooge.”
In the spirit of always making things better, we’ve shuffled some things over here at Lavender and this is my last issue as managing editor of the magazine. I’m going to instead be editorial director of all of Lavender Media, which is really just to say that I get to refocus my time and energy to moving the company forward with digital and video while giving someone else, Chris Tarbox, the role of handling the print edition, under my supervision. Chris is an award-winning writer from the newspaper world, he’s funny as hell, he’s a conscientious and aware person, and we will have a lot of fun as an editorial team. He’s got the heart that I want the magazine to have. We will both be working to make things even better for our audiences here at Lavender. For you.
As always, thank you for everything. For reading along, for sending in ideas, for letting us cover your stories and events, for letting us represent you. Have a wonderful holiday season and a Happy New Year.
With you and with thanks,