Only loving kindness and right mindfulness can free us.
I’ve been listening to John Meecham’s book on the country’s third president and you can’t help but be drawn to the modern comparisons.
Lincoln was ungodly long and not a whole hell of a lot happened through the middle portion, but, gosh, Daniel Day-Lewis sure was good and, honestly, who besides a Stephen Spielberg makes a movie about passing a Constitutional amendment anyways. Put DD-L in the best actor mix for his portrait of the 16th president, which he nailed—right down to Abe’s shambling gait. And don’t forget Sally Field, who gave a great performance as Mary Todd Lincoln.
The movie certainly appeared to want to speak to us about our bitterly divided government, but I guess I found it cartoonish. And the Democrat congressman who joined the cause of emancipation, by and large, were moved by pretty base reasons. Maybe that’s how it was, but it certainly felt like a grubby path to a noble goal. And perhaps that’s the lesson here.
(Editor’s note: I was assigned by my church group an unusual assignment: to write my own obituary. I know, most people would write something a bit more sober. Here it is. All of Virginia’s quotes come straight from her. Honestly.)
Kevin Donahue, who lived a life of love, compassion, humor, and integrity, died early this morning at his home in Eagleville, Pa. He was 47.
“I made him a chicken quesadilla last night, we opened a $7 bottle of wine, and afterward I left him alone for a bit and he watched an episode from the second season of ‘24’. He told me that was the best year for it,” said his wife of 20 years, Virginia Kirk. “Our former neighbor, Sandy, stopped by to pick up an item we had borrowed and when Kevin asked how she was, she said he didn’t care and instead was being ‘sincere in the moment,’ like he was with a neighbor who was widowed years ago. He shook his head and agreed. He was a hard guy to fluster.
“Then we went to bed and made loud, passionate love until about 1:30. I hope the kids didn’t hear. That would be, I don’t know, haunting. He must have gone sometime before dawn.”
Ben Affleck can be pretty unbearable, but he can also dial up a decent movie. And Argo is just that—interesting, taut, and fun, as you know walking in to the theater that it all ends up alright. Honestly, though, he should never play a guy named Tony Mendez again. Affleck’s about as ethnic as Pat’s Steaks.
That said, I enjoyed it, and I never thought I’d like to be reminded of the Iranian hostage crisis for even 10 seconds, never mind 2 hours.
I work as an adjunct professor at Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Communications. I’ve done it for 2 1/2 years now. In that time, my employer has hired 4 of my students—the most recent, Gerilyn Manago, this past week.