Life’s Lessons: Don’t Believe Your Press Releases

October 1, 2010

When Terry and I went to Alaska, we went for a vacation. What we came away with were several new life lessons. So, in an attempt to share them (and perhaps bore you all to death), here’s the first.

My cousin’s boyfriend loaned me Going Rouge: An American Nightmare. This collection of editorials and opinion columns offered new input into the life and times of Sarah Palin. Perhaps what prompted Duane to loan me the book was our drive through Wassila, one of the ugliest examples of urban and suburban sprawl in Alaska. I expected it to be beautiful, with small lakes, float planes and lots of cute homes fronting those lakes. NOT. It’s one strip mall after the other. Even the lake where Ms. Palin lives is ordinary, as is her house. Only the large fence between her and a writer she termed snoopy stood out in the middle-class neighborhood. What do you want to be the Palins move into a mansion, just like other nouveau riche do. The town is “wasilly.” Couldn’t even find a book store there.

I admit I read sections of Going Rogue, too. I found it full of misrepresentations and myths. People who believe their own press releases bother me. This book bothered me.

While I was reading Going Rouge in the great room, my bedside reading was The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch. What could be more of a contrast to the first book than this one? Pausch lived the last years of his life full of joy, full of honesty about what was happening to him, full of life and love for his wife and children. He could have passed a lie detector test. Yes, he was afraid of dying but not afraid to die. I found his honesty uplifting.

Stray thought: I bet Ms. Palin could also pass a lie dectector test. She obviously believes the lies she tells and the press releases her “people” submit. Sigh.

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