Friday, March 25, 2011

Jim is on Spring Break. Part of his vacation plans consist of taking his kids to Colonial Williamsburg, an occupational hazard for children whose father is a history teacher. Jim his hoping to get Thomas Jefferson to confess that he's utterly exasperated with George Washington (he was too diplomatic last time) and for Patrick Henry to express unvarnished class resentment (shouldn't be too hard). Both are pictured above. Don't be fooled: the two don't much like each other.

Jim's current reading is the rollicking Charlie Wilson's War, the 2003 book by CBS producer George Crile that became the basis of the 2007 movie about a Texas congressman who almost single-handedly redirected the U.S. government to aid Afghan rebels in their successful war against the Soviet Union in the 1980s -- but also laid the groundwork for 9/11 a dozen years later. This reading is part of current research on Tom Hanks (star of the movie), but also for background reading that may aid teaching for "U.S. Since 1940" and civics courses.

Slated hotel reading will be Jennifer Egan's latest novel, A Visit from the Goon Squad, which is reputedly a well-crafted and highly accessible postmodern novel about the members of a rock band and their lives over time. There may be more to say about that one at some point.

Take care -- really: take care -- Spring Breakers. And to all a good night.