Archive - Jun 2008

June 16th


I am in Boston today after traveling yesterday.

For the past four summers, I have been a "visiting scholar" at a summer institute for area social studies and English teachers. Thanks to a grant, they entire group of fifty-some teachers is taking a trip to Boston to tour Revolutionary War sites, and thanks to the generosity of the grant, they had enough money to take me along, for which I am thankful!

June 14th


I can't die young, that time is past
this birthday tells me so.
Now four-score years, I must admit
that eighty years is old.

I can't die young, I'll have to face
that youthfulness is gone
They'll say she lived a good long life
it's time to move along.

I won't die young, turn back the clock,
I'll die mature instead
What that time comes, I'll take my leave
--now much to do ahead.

--Dorothy Purrier Bodwell, 1922-2007

June 13th


The best tribute to Tim Russert came from a fellow journalist who said that the deceased host of Meet the Press is now up in heaven saying, "But Lord, you clearly stated in Exodus 6:14..."


Today, Dad and I drove to Hawley for the graveside service for Cousin Dorothy. Cousin Dorothy died last fall in California at age 86, only 10 days after learning she had inoperable cancer. She wanted her ashes to be buried in the family plot in Hawley. She was Aunt Olla's oldest niece.

Some honesty

Right-wing (as opposed to conservative--the two terms are increasingly mutually exclusive)columnist Toney Blankley lets slip the truth in a recent anti-Obama column:
For those of us who suspect but cannot yet prove that Barack Obama is a genuine radical leftist, his lack of much of a voting record is going to make it difficult to prove what his real values, policies and motives are to be president.


Michael Kinsley discusses the opportunity both Barack Obama and John McCain have to up the level of decency in political campaigns.

What Kinsley doesn't mention is that there are already fellow POWS of McCain willing to disparage his behavior while captive. Let's hope that none of these allegations even see the light of day. It is Obama's responsibility to prevent it from happening.

June 12th


Heard a true story this week about Gus, a local who is now gone, who went in to the nursing home to see an old neighbor of his. The neighbor was suffering dementia, so Gus asked, "Do you know who I am?"

"No," the old man replied, "but they should be able to tell you up at the desk."


Suddenly, June is beautiful. It is almost fantasy: so recently, we had snow! And now this almost obscene, furious green. This late afternoon, I went on a drive across the valley to Grand Forks. A storm met and passed me by.

June 11th


"I awoke to normalcy!" Aunt Olla said today when I went in to the Hilton for a visit. She was sleeping so peacefully, I hesitated to wake her, but awakening to normalcy isn't a bad thing after facing floating heads for the past few days.

There is no guarantee that this is permanent; a nurse cautioned me that she has felt normal before in the past few days, only to have the strange visions return. Gold coins in the air. Enormous barrels in the bottom of the ocean, in which Olla was trapped. Horrible stuff.


When in need of a tonic, read Camille.