Friday, January 6, 2017

Three Beautiful Things 01/05/17: Granola, Inaugural History, Stay Quiet and Listen

1. The Deke enjoys granola in the morning and since the batch I made a little while back was almost gone, I baked up another batch this morning, using the same ingredients as before: oats, sliced almonds, cinnamon, vanilla extract, melted butter, real maple syrup, and a pinch of salt. I use a chart to guide me.  It's here.

2. While reading history does deepen my sense of those issues and ways of doing things and elements of the American experience that remain the same, it's also interesting to note what's different. I knew, before reading this book, that, until 1937, presidents took office in March, not January. It's interesting to read how Lincoln had nearly four months to assemble his cabinet and prepare himself for office and to read how he decided to remain mostly silent during those four months, letting speeches and comments already on the record speak for him. I don't know if this longer time period of transition would make things better or worse today, but reading A. Lincoln has prompted me to try to imagine what it would be like if President Obama were to remain in office until March 4 and President-elect Trump had four months to prepare to take office. You know, it's almost unimaginable.

3.  The Deke and three fellow employees from the Prince George's County School District got together for drinks and snacks at Old Line after school and the Deke invited me to join in. I enjoyed being a complete outsider. I had little to offer to much of the conversation, so I listened to my tablemates about teaching, the operation of the school district, and other things outside of school that had little connection to my life or my experience, but broadened and deepened my understanding of all kinds of things: life on the East Coast, family, travel, and real estate, among other things.

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