Las Vegas, NV
May 20, 2020
Garrison Keillor hits Las Vegas with a new solo show!
April 18, 2020
Garrison Keillor comes to the Rochester Civic Theatre for a night of stories, songs, poetry, and humor. Tickets $50 and up
February 19, 2020
Garrison Keillor with Heather Masse at the Dakota. Night 2 of 2. Tickets $30+
February 18, 2020
Garrison Keillor with Heather Masse at the Dakota. Night 1 of 2. Tickets $30+
by Naomi Shihab Nye
A man crosses the street in rain,
stepping gently, looking two times north and south,
because his son is asleep on his shoulder.
No car must splash him.
No car drive too near to his shadow.
This man carries the world’s most sensitive cargo
but he’s not marked.
Nowhere does his jacket say FRAGILE,
HANDLE WITH CARE.
His ear fills up with breathing.
He hears the hum of a boy’s dream
deep inside him.
We’re not going to be able
to live in this world
if we’re not willing to do what he’s doing
with one another.
The road will only be wide.
The rain will never stop falling.
Naomi Shahib Nye, “Shoulders” from Red Suitcase. Copyright © 1994 by Naomi Shihab Nye. Used with the permission of The Permissions Company, LLC on behalf of BOA Editions Ltd., www.boaeditions.org (buy now)
It’s the anniversary of the first meeting of the House of Burgesses, in Jamestown, in the Virginia Colony, in 1619. It was the first representative assembly in America and served as a model for later forms of local government.
It’s the birthday of the novelist Emily Brontë, (books by this author) born in Thornton, England (1818). Emily Brontë wrote Wuthering Heights (1847), considered one of the greatest love stories of all time, but she never had a lover. She and her sisters Anne and Charlotte and their brother Branwell educated themselves at home by reading their father’s large collection of classic literature. They invented elaborate fantasy kingdoms and filled notebooks with the history and inhabitants of these places. Emily was the most reserved of the children.
Emily is most famous for Wuthering Heights, but she also wrote poetry; and when her sister Charlotte discovered some of Emily’s poems, she said: “Of course, I was not surprised, knowing that she could and did write verse: I looked it over, and something more than surprise seized me — a deep conviction that these were not common effusions, not at all like the poetry women generally write. I thought them condensed and terse, vigorous and genuine. To my ear, they had also a peculiar music — wild, melancholy, and elevating.” In 1836, Charlotte — who was the most outgoing and confident of the sisters — decided to publish their poetry, but she figured it wouldn’t sell if they used their real names, so she gave them all male names, and Poems by Currier, Ellis and Acton Bell was published in 1846. Wuthering Heights came out in 1847, and a year later, Emily died of tuberculosis at age 30, standing in the living room of her family’s parsonage.
It’s the birthday of the essayist and novelist William H. Gass, (books by this author) born in Fargo, North Dakota (1924). He wanted to write fiction, but he was afraid he wouldn’t be able to support himself. So he got a job teaching philosophy, and he was busy teaching and raising three kids, so he wrote slowly. He only had one copy of his manuscript, written on a typewriter, and it was stolen and he had to start all over. When he finally did finish it, it was rejected over and over again. Finally, in 1966, he published Omensetter’s Luck. He’s also published several books of essays, including On Being Blue (1976) and Tests of Time (2002), and in 1995 he published The Tunnel (1995), a novel that is more than 600 pages long and took him almost 30 years to write.
It’s the birthday of auto maker Henry Ford, born on a farm near Dearborn, Michigan (1863), who created the Model-T and the concept of an assembly line. He said: “We don’t want tradition. We want to live in the present, and the only history that is worth a tinker’s dam is the history we make today.”
On this day in 762, the city of Baghdad was founded along the Tigris River.
On this day 55 years ago, Lyndon Johnson signed the Social Security Act of 1965. This law created Medicare and Medicaid, public health insurance for elderly people and for low-income families. It was controversial, but the controversy was nothing new — by the time LBJ signed the bill on this day in 1965, the national health care debate had been going on for well over half a century, since the early 1900s.
It’s the birthday of economist and sociologist Thorstein Veblen, (books by this author) born in Cato, Wisconsin (1857). He was an economics professor at the young University of Chicago when, in 1899, he published his book The Theory of the Leisure Class, in which he coined the phrase “conspicuous consumption.”
Veblen used the term in a sentence of his book like this: “Conspicuous consumption of valuable goods is a means of reputability to the gentleman of leisure.”
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