Sunday, August 22, 2004

Okay - this thing is working. I'm back in the blogging world!!

It is sunday evening. As usual, I am quite tired. I am usually up quite early doing final prep for the morning.

I am reading a book entitled Flyboys. It is the story of eight flyers who died on Chichi Jima at the hands of the Japanese. This is the flight that George H.W. Bush was part of -- he escaped. In the process of telling the story, the author does a masterful job of telling the story of how the Japanese military developed the way it did in the 1930's. I will not get into the details, but the soldiers were cruelly brutalized so that they would do the same to others. I have not been in the military so I have no first experience with Boot Camp, but from what I have been told and from what I have read, their is no comparison. Our soldiers are trained to be "lean mean fighting machines" -- i.e., they are trained to kill. But the Japanese soldier of the 20's, 30's and 40's was systemamtically trained to be a torturer, rapist, executioner, etc. Chilling, chilling stuff.

I also began a book by Garry Wills about the Gettysburg Address. It combines the story of the giving of the address with an analysis of he rhetorical standards of the 1860's. It also examines how the address functions as part of American self understanding. So far so good!!

Trudi is one month from birth. We are having a girl. We have a name picked -- but I have been forbidden from telling what it is. Sorry -- you'll just have to wait!!

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