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It's the last day of March already? The old adage that time
goes by quicker as you get older seems to be true.
I've discovered another interesting website offering up people's
stories. It features radio host Dick Gordon's various
interviews. He interviews everyday (I don't like to call them
"ordinary") people who have interesting lives. As I always
maintain, everyone does. The Friday, March 30th program was
about Kim Ng. She
grew up on the streets of Queens, NY (my father's birth town) playing
stickball. Now she's vice president and assistant general
manager of the L.A. Dodgers.
On The Story website
there is a place to tell them about your story.
And lots of people are sharing. It's interesting.
You can visit The Story
It is currently memoir week at Slate.com.
Over the next three days their experts are weighing in on new
memoirs. I believe no personal history method has grown more
the past few years. Just what a memoir is may be open to a
bit of speculation, but it differs from a typical biography or
autobiography. The memoir process allows you to focus on the
"story" behind the stories of your life events, to comment on your life
lessons and values, and to offer insight into a particular phase or
period of your life. You can read about a number of
selections from Slate by going here.
One of the more interesting selections (for me) is on the subject of
autobiography and poetry. Poet Meghan O'Rourke comments on
this subject as it relates to her poetry. I find it pertinent
as I am currently writing a book about a young poet from Mississippi.
Ahrend Walters writes very spiritual poetry that is often
complex and even mysterious. He states he is an imperfect
genius and he maintains that all geniuses are imperfect.
Where he finds perfection is part of his deeply held
religious beliefs and you can read more about him at his Believer Poet
Some people think they don't have a story to tell. Even so
called "ordinary" people often have lived fascinating lives.
For instance, Madison Sales. I'd never heard of him
but was steered to his obituary posted at GlobeandMail.com.
They regularly post obits about everyday people and Mr. Sales
story is amazing, to say the least.
From the obituary: "Madison Sale mdash; known to most everyone
as Mad — lived an exciting life
with no regrets because he lived it in a way most people only dream
about. During his lifetime, he was a newspaper cartoonist,
photographer, professional motorcyclist (with national championship
wins and trophies), weightlifter, gymnast, and volunteer clown for the
You can read interesting obituaries here
at the "lives lived" page which is updated each day.
Today is the first official day of spring. The weather has
been pretty nice in this part of the country with lots of sunshine and
70 degree temperatures during the day. Today we even had a
few sprinkles and we might get some rain showers tomorrow.
It's always good for us to get precipitation for our dry
Another significant date has been the 4th anniversary of the War in
Iraq. Our Armed Forces have endured a lot during this time,
with many of them pulling more than one tour. I hope and pray
that there will soon be a resolution to the conflict, but it is a
difficult and violent situation.
If you haven't seen it yet, there is now an online Iraq Veterans Memorial
that honors the members of the U.S. armed forces who have lost their
lives serving in the Iraq War. The site, hosted by the Brave New Foundation,
includes video memories from family, friends and military colleagues.
It's very moving. More here.
Yesterday was St. Patrick's Day. Did you wear green and get
your Irish on?
My wife and I drove up to Santa Fe to visit a dear friend of hers for
lunch. Then we attended the wedding of two good friends of mine.
Pam and Ray had a beautiful ceremony at the historic Loretto
Chapel near the old town plaza. That chapel is no longer a Roman
Catholic Church, but privately owned. It has an interesting
past, especially the story about the miraculous
The wedding and reception were lovely. There was plenty of
their family and friends, including children and grandchildren, as they
were both previously married.
Weddings are one of those special events that bring together lots of
people and make powerful memories. I always encourage those
thinking about doing an iMemoryBook
to consider a wedding or anniversary as the subject.
If there is such a thing as "spring fever" I think I've caught it.
Our weather here in New Mexico has been lovely the past few
days. The days are warmer and now that Daylight Savings Time
has begun we have light into the evening. I do love this time of year.
is a new movie out based on a best-selling book, The Ultimate
Gift. James Garner stars as the wealthy grandfather
and Drew Fuller plays his grandson. It tells the story of a
man, Red Stevens, who decides his legacy of wealth needs to be used to
grandson the true meaning of living. I haven't seen the movie
yet, but I can tell from the subject matter that it will resonate with
any of us who write our stories and for all those who want to preserve
their stories and their life lessons.
The movie is distributed by Fox
Faith and you can find out more at the official
site - here. And there is a
very positive review by Lawrence Toppman here at GuideLive.com.
If you've been to You
Tube on the Internet you know there is a wide
range of videos posted. Lots of them silly or strange, but
more and more people are sharing some of their personal stories and
family history. A great example is the 80-year old English
gentleman, Peter, who goes by geriatric1927. He's
posted a great many videos of him describing his life and he's
generated quite a following of avid viewers.
Recently the BBC
profiled him on a radio segment and you can see that new report here.
What kind of people are personal historians. Well, as
personal historian Chana
Thau relates in an article posted online at The
Globe and Mail tells us, "Personal
historians are a motley crew. With such diverse backgrounds as
teaching, counselling, marketing, television, newspaper journalism and
oral history, we are producing memoirs in the form of books, videos and
I believe anyone with a passion for preserving family and personal
stories and histories can be a personal historian. However,
it takes some dedication and some skills. Some, like myself,
specialize in writing.
Others are very good at interviews and recording oral histories. And there
is a growing number who create wonderful video biographies.
Chana is a member of the Association of Personal Historians (APH), and
she gives credit to the growing organization's (over 650 members now)
great resources and assistance.