It’s a punch in the gut to hear of John McCain’s serious brain cancer. I generally disagree with him on almost everything. I still find much to admire about him. And he had that genuinely great moment in the 2008 campaign.
Wow what a contrast to someone else we could mention.
On some personal level, Senator McCain has simply been a presence our lives for a quarter-century. His physical fragility provides yet another reminder of some basic realities in human life.
I and most of my friends on the Obama campaign never bore personal animus towards McCain. We admired his service, and he reminded us of a cranky relative we loved but didn’t think should be President. We were genuinely shocked that Trump denigrated McCain’s service–and that Trump survived it. Still are.
One irony. Senator McCain’s cancer has apparently derailed Republicans’ repeal-and-replace effort. It’s the same cancer that ultimately felled Senator Edward Kennedy, a story that profoundly altered the trajectory of the Affordable Care Act.
Glenn mentions my Death of a Salesman essay, which is here.
Fireworks are surprisingly hard to capture well. One needs a fast shutter speed, but this requires a very low fstop–which means expensive glass if you are using a long lens–or a really good sensor that allows good cropping–similar fiscal problem–or high ISO, which tends to create other challenges. Many of these were at 6400 ISO.
This week, I attended the AcademyHealth meetings in New Orleans. Spent a surprising amount of time doing Twitter selfies with long-distance friends I see a few times a year.
I met some interesting strangers, too. Fast Freddie (shown above) charged me $10 for a shoe shine. That was kindof ridiculous, but he let me take his picture. I got the better end of that deal.
On the way home, I grabbed dinner with some time to kill at the New Orleans airport. Of course I avoided the authentic local cuisine–because who wants that. I headed straight to Subway.*
One table was located near the precious electronic outlet. One problem: A man was already sitting there. I asked if I could join him. He said sure. Chris Finch is a member of the coaching staff of the New Orleans Pelicans. We had a fascinating conversation about the NBA life: a few players he admires across the league, what makes for selfish play at both ends of the floor, how the NBA game differs from college. He’s just a really smart and engaging person.
The world is filled with wonderful strangers who cross our paths without without engagement in our lonely crowd. Research by my University of Chicago colleague Nick Epley suggests that we should talk more with interesting strangers who come our way in life. He’s right. We’d be happier if we could fix that.
*Since you are wondering: toasted 6-inch roast beef with provolone, spinach, and pickles.
More from my walk in the park.
Walk in the park, northwest Chicago.