High Point, NC
Garrison Keillor and the Hopeful Gospel Quartet (Robin & Linda Williams, Prudence Johnson with Dan Chouinard) comes to the High Point Theatre for an Evening of poetry, gospel, sing-alongs and the News from Lake Wobegon. Tickets $60-$40
Garrison Keillor and the Hopeful Gospel Quartet (Robin & Linda Williams, Prudence Johnson with Dan Chouinard) comes to the Waynes Theatre for an Evening of poetry, gospel, sing-alongs and the News from Lake Wobegon. 7:00PM $55 reserved
Garrison Keillor and the Hopefuls (Robin and Linda Williams) comes to the Carrollton Cultural Arts Center for an Evening of poetry, gospel, sing-alongs and the News from Lake Wobegon. Tickets $30 reserved/ $10 children
Carrollton, GA Luncheon
Garrison Keillor will join guests for a casual Luncheon in the Lobby of the Carrollton Cultural Arts Center, where he will talk about how it all began and where he thinks he is going. Tickets: $45
Garrison Keillor Tonight with opener Debi Smith comes to The Birchmere in Alexandria, VA for an Evening of poetry, Sing-alongs and the News from Lake Wobegon. Tickets $45.00.
Daily I Fall in Love with Mechanics
by Susan Thurston
in response to Daily I Fall in Love with Waitresses by Elliot Fried
Daily I fall in love with mechanics
with their smudged coveralls and names embroidered
over where their hearts just might be
PETE STEWART RAY CHUCK BUTCH
and thick soled boots.
I love how they jack up my car
and press the pneumatic drill
to my tires and with hip
press lean into the whir of liberation
nuts and bolts falling
released from so much spinning
and holding everything tight in place.
I feel their hands
roughened by spark plugs and washer fluid
yet sweetened by overflowing oil pans
slide over me.
Their arms and shoulders
remind me of deep river valleys
and other places where we could tumble
after setting the parking brake…
fumbling and clutching so melodiously
I am left grateful for their engine knowledge.
Daily I fall in love with mechanics
with their grease smudged bad boy grins
and come hither wide opening garage doors.
They tell secrets in the pit
and I want them.
I know them.
They slip belts back into place
their legs diesel dark
They have lovers or spouses or children
They are strut bearing reliable—
they know how timing belts twist.
Their toothpick punctuated grins
reassure you they are giving you the best
deal in town and they would not let you drive
without checking all your fluid levels.
Daily I fall in love with mechanics.
They are better than Free Air
want my vehicle to be safe and sound
but they never travel far enough
before pulling the next car into the station.
“Daily I Fall in Love with Mechanics” by Susan Thurston. © Susan Thurston. Reprinted with permission of the author. (books by this author)
On this date in 1958, Vladimir Nabokov‘s Lolita was published in the United States (books by this author). First released in France in 1955 by a publisher that specialized in erotica, the story of middle-aged Humbert Humbert and his obsession with his landlady’s 12-year-old daughter was met with mixed reviews. Graham Greene named it one of the best books of 1955; E.M. Forster, Evelyn Waugh, and Edmund Wilson disagreed. A contemporary New York Times review pleaded with readers to ignore the word-of-mouth and keep an open mind: “He is not writing for the ardent and simple-minded civil-libertarian any more than he is writing for the private libertine; he is writing for readers, and those who can read him simply will be well rewarded.” The Los Angeles Times reviewer wrote:
“Lolita is a small masterpiece, an almost perfect comic novel, a rare thing in these days when we have lost sight of the purgative and pleasurable effects of comedy and when tragedy has become the small and poverty-stricken province of southern effetes and New England housewives.”
The National Review was more critical of modern society than it was of the book: “Lolita, in the context of the reception it has been given, remains nevertheless a savage indictment of an age that can see itself epitomized in such horror and run to fawn upon the horror as beauty, delicacy, understanding.”
On the other side of the debate, Kingsley Amis wrote in The Spectator, “There comes a point where the atrophy of moral sense, evident throughout this book, finally leads to dullness, fatuity and unreality (…) The only success of the book is in the portrait of Lolita herself.” And the Village Voice‘s reviewer wrote: “Three hundred pages of sex in the head. A good number of them funny pages, I admit. Even delicately Joycean. But too many, and too much.”
In the novel’s postscript, Nabokov attempts to explain why he wrote Lolita: because he had to. “Once or twice,” he writes, “I was on the point of burning the unfinished draft … when I was stopped by the thought that the ghost of the destroyed book would haunt my files for the rest of my life.”
On this date in 1920 the 19th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified, giving women the right to vote. There had been strong opposition to woman suffrage since before the Constitution was drafted in the first place. People (mostly men) believed that women should not vote or hold office because they needed to be protected from the sordid world of politics. Abigail Adams asked her husband, John, to “remember the ladies and be more generous and favorable to them than your ancestors,” but to no avail. A more organized womans’ suffrage movement arose in the 19th century, hand in hand with the abolitionist movement, and in July 1848 Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Lucretia Mott organized a women’s rights convention in Seneca Falls, New York. Stanton drafted a Declaration of Sentiments, modeled after the Declaration of Independence, demanding the right of women to have an equal say in their government if they were to be bound by its laws. Attendees — women and men — signed the Declaration of Sentiments to show their support, although some later asked that their names be removed when they experienced the media backlash.
In the latter half of the 19th century states began gradually loosening restrictions on voting rights for women. Wyoming was the first state to grant women the full right to vote, which it did when it gained statehood in 1890. The first national constitutional amendment was proposed in Congress in 1878, and in every Congress session after that. Finally, in 1919, it narrowly passed both houses of Congress and was sent to the states to be ratified. Most Southern states opposed the amendment and, on August 18, 1920, it all came down to Tennessee. The pro-amendment faction wore yellow roses in their lapels, and the “anti” faction wore red American Beauty roses. It was a close battle and the state legislature was tied 48 to 48. The decision came down to one vote: that of 24-year-old Harry Burn, the youngest state legislator. Proudly sporting a red rose, he cast his vote … in favor of ratification. He had been expected to vote against it, but he had in his pocket a note from his mother, which read:
“Dear Son: Hurrah, and vote for suffrage! Don’t keep them in doubt. I noticed some of the speeches against. They were bitter. I have been watching to see how you stood, but have not noticed anything yet. Don’t forget to be a good boy and help Mrs. Catt put the ‘rat’ in ratification. Your Mother.”
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