Wow, this has been a tricky few days. First, about a week ago, I flew to New York on an uneventful flight, which I already described. Terrible food.
I gave my speech, and headed down to the Eastern Shore of the Chesapeake Bay with my trusty friend, Bob. All went well and I had great crab soup at the Robert Morris Inn in Oxford, strolled around the town, and then had a fine meal at the Tidewater Inn.
Then back home to rendezvous with Big Wifey, who had just flown in from LAX.
We spent all of Saturday resting, and then on Sunday, went off to see my parents’ gravesite in Virginia. It was April 21, the 16th anniversary of my mom’s entry into immortality.
Very emotional. I miss my parents endlessly.
I guess that will never stop.
As I sat at the gravesite on a small marble bench, I started to get a flamethrower type pain in my lungs. It was torture. But I told Bob to drive us to Oxford. Maybe (I foolishly thought) the salty Bay air would make me feel better.
But by the time we were eating our spectacular cream of crab soup, I felt horrible.
We made out pitiful way to Easton and sat down at the Tidewater Inn. I felt too ill to eat and sprawled on a chair in the lobby. Then, a tormented drive back to D.C. I stopped for a Diet Coke at a McDonald’s on the eastern end of the Bay Bridge. There, I met a man who told me he had just read and enjoyed my latest book, What Would Ben Stein Do?, which I had thought only Wlady Pleszczynski, Aram Bakshian, and John Coyne and I had read. I am not at all sure that Wlady has even read it. I was so happy to meet that nice man, an Army logistician, I could have cried.
When I got back to the Watergate, I took a shower, got into my PJ’s, and here I have been ever since, barely alive. Wifey is taking care of me, although she is ill, too.
I have been reading the papers and saw that one of my singing idols, Richie Havens, died. He did the greatest version ever of “Just Like a Woman.” Made me sad.
I read a truly touching story about the interment of the remains of a Korean War hero named Lt. Col Faith, who died at Cho-Sin charging a Chinese position with only a pistol and grenades. As the superb reporter Greg Jaffe noted, "He died alone." What a superstar. What an angel.
John Meroney, a long-time friend who is a historian, especially of Reagan, sent me a link to a review of a documentary Robert Redford made about Watergate.
I was interviewed at great length for that so I wanted to see it. But when I started to put it up on YouTube, it was obviously so mocking and derogatory that I could not watch it. I passed that news on to John Meroney, who sent me a clip from a review in Slate about the documentary.
The review was by a Professor of American History at Yale par le nom Beverly Gage. She did the usual Yale thing of mockery and contempt for the whole movie. She said that my breaking into tears when talking about how unfair the media and academic elite had been to Richard Nixon, the greatest peacemaker in the history of the republic, was “mildly ridiculous.”
Perfect for a Yale Professor. Treat any expression of emotion over the crucifixion of a dear friend, a true man of peace, the man who promised a generation of peace and gave it to us, saved Israel, opened China, started us on the road to the end of the Cold War, desegregated the last hundreds of holdout school districts, the EPA, the offer of national health care -- treat that expression of emotion as ridiculous. Perfect for a history prof at Yale, world center of contempt.
God help her. I hope she learns what peace means and what human life means at some stage of her magnificent career.
At dinner tonight, I read a story of fantastic horror. In my home state of Maryland, in the Baltimore prison, a black gang, the Black Guerrilla Family, simply took over the prison. The leader of the gang, a Mr. Dawon White, impregnated at least four female guards --sometimes having sex with them while other guards kept watch. Another BGF member knocked up at least one other guard.
“The inmates were running the prison,” as one official said.
Now many guards and many inmates have been indicted for various crimes. The BGF was running a drug operation so big that it made beaucoup bucks for the estimable Mr. White and he used some of it to buy cool cars for the women guards.
Oh, did I tell you that two of the female guards had Mr. White’s first name, “Dawon,” tattooed on their wrists?
Everything will be complete when the ACLU starts to claim that the prisoners’ rights have been violated.
One more thing; the governor of Maryland, a Mr. O’Malley, is considering running for President. As a Democrat. Why not? He obviously knows how to run a state. Please keep him away from Idaho.