Like lucky children on a Christmas morning, Betty and Bimbo were sitting on the floor in pajamas, digging through boxes of papers ("like a wind inside a letterbox") and listening to Justin Timberlake last Sunday afternoon. Needless to say, they had lots of fun. Among the smudgey postcards and science lab reports and teacher comment cards (including notes on Bimbo's substantial improvements in gym class), the pair uncovered a far-flung archeology of the self, including their "early work".
It is trendy to say an artist's early work is his best. While honestly this case cannot be made for Betty and Bimbo's first poems and literary efforts, it is still good that these inspired works came to light after all those years in boxes. Had they not surfaced, the world may never have known about Betty's song lyrics where she compares a boy to a "bear cub," or the dream she had about Bimbo long before they knew each other well (although the dream might have been about another guy named Bimbo, she can't remember).
Bimbo's juvenilia steals the show from Betty's young scribbling, however. First, there is the eighth grade personal essay where he sounds like a grizzled old gay man as he describes his red smoking jacket. Then there is the even earlier poem that ends with a resounding "Thou Must Know"! And who could forget one of Bimbo's first manuscripts to make the leap into hardcover (and into our hearts), Snakes: Fact or Fable??
The Betty and Bimbo manuscript archive in New York City is open to the public by appointment. Please contact us to make a reservation, or if you'd like to come over for some dinner, coffee, lively conversation, and TV-watching.