April 11, 1970  Houston, We’ve had a Problem – Today in History

For four days and nights, the three-man crew lived aboard the cramped, freezing Aquarius, a landing module intended to support a crew of 2 for only 1½ days

Source: April 11, 1970  Houston, We’ve had a Problem – Today in History

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One Summer America 1927 – Bill Bryson

Vivian Copeland's Best Books Of All Time

one summerBill Bryson is a king of non-fiction. He has a way of writing about historical events both extraordinary and mundane that makes them interesting and accessible. In this book, he tackles the summer of 1927 in America, a busy period in the nation’s history. The stock market was booming, President Calvin Coolidge worked just four hours a day, a sculptor came up with a crazy idea to carve four giant heads into Mt. Rushmore, and a young aviator named Charles Lindbergh flew a flimsy airplane across the Atlantic for the first time-among other things. It was the summer that ushered in the talking picture, television was invented, Al Capone was terrorizing Chicago, and an over-the-hill baseball player named Babe Ruth returned to greatness. The book is an entertaining read, a brawling tale of adventure and reckless optimism. Bryson is best known for his book, A Walk in the Woods. However, this one with its cast of eccentric…

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[Intermezzo] Wherein I Offer You a Few Disjointed but Heartfelt Memories of My Dead Friend Frank on Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day

A touching tribute to a man who fought in WWII and Korea.

A Small Press Life: Books. Art. Writing. Life. Tea.

Dear World,

Frank died at 87 1/2 years old. Picture this: When he was a tow-headed little boy, just a toddler, his parents dressed him in short pants and a striped shirt and posed him on the hood of the family Model T, grinning. Feisty. He was named after a prominent ancestor, Benjamin Franklin, and they shared more than a name: both were brilliant, larger-than-life, charismatic. Actually, he came from a long line of characters: a grandfather who died, in his 90s, as the result of a bar fight, a father who was an early aviator. That family bred their men big, bold, and memorable. Frank, my Frank, my friend, came of age during the Great Depression. He had an older brother, equally brilliant; when it came time for Frank to attend college in ’37 or ’38, there was no money left. None. His brother had the degree that Frank…

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