Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Richard Ford-"I'm here"

Heading out shortly to see Richard Ford at the Parnassus-co-sponsored event at the Nashville public library downtown. Here he was recently in Washington.

He just drove down from a similar event in St. Louis. Tomorrow night he'll be at Square Books in Oxford MS. Authors complain about author tours, but I'm excited about this one. I last saw Ford at the old Davis-Kidd in Nashville in June '96, when he inscribed a congratulatory response to my announcement that I'd heeded the wisdom of The Sportswriter: "In my view all teachers should be required to stop teaching at age thirty-two and not allowed to resume until they're sixty-five..."


UPDATE, 8:30 pm-

This grace note followed my admission that shortly after meeting him in '96 I'd gone and got myself right back into academia, where I've been ever since. Nice man.

Feels like closing a circuit. Or, as he says this new book is all about, "bearing witness." One of the attendees last night asked if Ford thought happiness is "relevant." Yes, but... there are satisfactions in a long and constructive life that exceed mere happiness. I think that's also what his books are about.

But beware this and every other explanation. "Explaining is where we all get into trouble." Don't I know it.

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