Thursday, January 04, 2007

Educate me

It's another one of those days where the photos and the text here have absolutely nothing to do with each other. But sometimes that just feels normal, doesn't it? Like last night when I was simultaneously sewing a patchwork pillowcase, watching bad TV (CSI Miami: a guilty pleasure when Todd is travelling and I want a little noise and distraction), and emptying the kitchen cabinets so the plumber and the exterminator could work while we were away visiting my sister today. Perhaps that sign above refers to my ability to concentrate on a single task without distraction?

Anyway, in between the usual routine around here, I spent Tuesday and Wednesday of this week nearly glued to C-Span, watching President Ford's memorial services. I guess it's the Grand Rapids connection that draws me. After all, many of the most important people in my life have ties to Grand Rapids: my husband and parents were born there, my in-laws and Grandparents all live(d) there, and Todd and I met at college there. But maybe I'm also attracted to the person President Ford was: his modesty, spirituality, loving marriage, and deep friendships.

In any case, the experience of watching it all on TV has impressed on me how little I really know about the recent political history of our country and about our presidents. Something else I need to add to the 2007 reading list, I guess. (It seems like the older I get, the more I realize how much I want to learn.) Any suggestions for a great book about U.S. politics and Presidents, post-revolution?


  1. So interesting to hear that you have ties to Grand Rapids. I've followed your blog for awhile and hadn't picked up on that before. I actually work in Grand Rapids and was able to watch the jets fly over both Tuesday and Wednesday in President Ford's honor. Wish I had been able to go to the museum that day but I'm sure I'll be visiting it soon after being (like you) drawn to all the recent coverage. As far as books, I just recently downloaded one about President Bush. I believe it's called Man of Faith. I haven't started listening to it yet but I've heard good things about it. :)

  2. Anonymous11:18 PM

    On my Christmas roadtrip (1,446 miles!) my fiance and I listened to the audiobook on Harry Truman, by David McCullough. I really enjoyed learning about the life of a President that I truthfully knew so little about. McCullough also wrote the book 1776, which is on my list for this year, and seems like you would like. I also love the book "The People's History of the United States" by Howard Zinn; not strictly about Presidents, but a terrific accounting of US History from the perspective of those that don't often make the history books.

  3. Mary-Heather11:19 PM

    I didn't mean to be anonymous!

  4. jenni= )11:48 PM

    that picture (of the robot) is awesome! where did you get/take it?

  5. hi there,
    i second the recommendation for "a people's history of the united states"... and also "the glory and the dream" by william manchester. very comprehensive 2-volume set on the 20th century... really fascinating so far (i'm on vol. 1... it's my new year's resolution too!)

  6. Isn't the robot cute? Kiddo has a thing for robots, so I notice them quickly. He lives in Ninth Street between 1st and 2nd Avenues, on the trash bin corral of an apartment building.

    Thank you all for your book suggestions. I'll look into all of them!