People generally agree that Superman's Kryptonian. Also, that Krypton is a fictional planet somewhere very far away, and (thanks to a degrading sun... depending on the version/ret-con you're reading...) Krypton exploded, leaving few survivors.
Specifically, in the Glenville neighborhood of Cleveland, Ohio. It's maybe 5 miles from my house.
(I know. I talk about Cleveland a lot. There's a lot to talk about.) (No, really.)
You may be suprised to learn that his parents were NOT the Freudian 'gods' Jor-El and Lara-El, nor the rural WASP-ish Jonathan and Martha Kent.
Superman and Clark Kent were birthed through the flowing ink of an imaginative but shy Jewish boy named Jerry Siegel, whose father had just died.
There's some argument in the family regarding the specifics of his death: one half claims Mitchell Siegel had a heart attack as a result of an armed robbery as he was closing his haberdashery shop. The other half insists Mitchell suffered 3 gunshots which caused his demise. Either way, a gun was involved; in the Action Comics #1, he did not fly, see through walls, or use heat vision. He certainly was invulnerable to bullets. This question has influenced Brad Meltzer to write his new book The Book of Lies. Read my post from yesterday for more information and links.
This is a long, round-about way to get to what I wanted to share with you. I hope it was enough to catch your attention.
I love my city, and ordinarily I am button-poppingly-proud of it. I like to share with you what makes me proud and what local news is craft-worthy. This one instance, however, is a failing of my city, the city in which Superman was born.
The Siegel house still stands. It's a different family living in it now, and when people come to see the Superman house, they warmly welcome these strangers in. Of course, they do: pilgrims to see the very room where Jerry Siegel scribbled his first images of The Man of Steel?? Visit this room and picture the whisperings and embryonic concepts of young Jerry Siegel and Joe Schuster, simultaneously masterminding and foiling plots on paper meant for schoolwork; feel the tingle down your spine and (alas) see the plaster crumble in time with it. No strangers to imagination themselves, this family understands the passion that drives people from far and wide to pay homage.
Sadly, the house is a disaster.
The outside is painted Superman red and blue, but the inside is crumbling.
It ought to be a landmark. There should be a historical marker, there should be funds to protect it. It's cultural history. But the City of Cleveland is falling short.
I like his passion. The whole concept of ordinary people doing things where traditional leadership has failed is as beautiful as a well-crafted, properly fit, hand-knit sweater.
My extra post this week serves several purposes. First, to bring the issue to your attention, so you have the opportunity to participate if you choose. Next, to share some trivia about my city and comic books (and exhibit once again what a supergeek I am). Finally, to show you that, for all that I brag about this city I love, I am willing to show you the warts as well, because I DO believe this is a major failing, and I also believe in showing all sides of a story. Cleveland has helped save, mark, or celebrate other famous homes (the Christmas Story House, the Heisman house, others). The Superman House certainly deserves consideration.
in primary colors and hand-written itallicized all-caps,
PS? Edith, I love your post. I didn't realize until today Rick and I had an AntiWedding. We just rejected everything the wedding industry tried to throw at us, but that was just us being us, nothing particularly activist about it (for a change). Good to know there's a name for it!!