Archive - January 2011

1
Review of Robert Balmanno's Runes of Iona
2
Review of Thomas Burns' The Man Who Caught No Birds
3
Upstairs, Downstairs with Dorothy Hamilton (Thailand 1972–74)
4
Tony D'Souza talks to New Yorker columnist and bestselling author Ken Auletta
5
A Writer Writes: The Chronicle of Sargent Shriver
6
Dennis Grubb's Notes from Sarge's wake and funeral Mass
7
Eulogies from the Funeral
8
At Sarge's Wake
9
Where to Write the Shriver Family
10
Shriver's Wake

Review of Robert Balmanno's Runes of Iona

Runes of Iona by Robert Balmanno (Benin 1973-75) Regent Press $15.95 349 pages August 2010 Reviewed by Paul Shovlin (Moldova 1996-98) THE SECOND BOOK in the Blessings of Gaia series by Robert Balmanno, Runes of Iona, is in print, and, like the first, it’s far-ranging and ambitious. The series began with September Snow which followed the protagonist Tom Novak, an author, philosopher, freedom fighter, as he worked with September Snow to disable the climate controlling wind machines of the Gaia-domes. In Runes of Iona, the machines are down and nature is slowly returning to something like normal, but little has changed in terms of the power of the Gaia-domes and their domination of the world. The second book follows Iona Snow and Kull, a freed slave, as they build a guerrilla army for the expressed purposes of dismantling the current power structure and toppling the dictatorship of the Gaia-dome government. . . .

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Review of Thomas Burns' The Man Who Caught No Birds

The Man Who Caught No Birds by Thomas Burns (Marshall Islands 1976–78) CreateSpace 201 pages $15.00 2010 Reviewer Reilly Ridgell (Micronesia 1971–73) WHEN I WRITE STORIES SET IN MICRONESIA where I served as a Peace Corps Volunteer, all my main characters are American.  Host country nationals are often peripheral or secondary characters because my stories are ultimately about how Americans relate to the culture and lifestyle of the host country. For myself — though someday I might try — I feel uncomfortable putting a Micronesian as a main character because I don’t feel confident that I can accurately portray his or her aspirations, moods, thought processes, etc. As much as we get to know the culture, language, and people of the countries where we are stationed, we’re still Americans and we still view their world through American eyes. Thomas Burns has written a novel set in the Marshall Islands where . . .

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Upstairs, Downstairs with Dorothy Hamilton (Thailand 1972–74)

Dorothy Hamilton, founder and CEO of the International Culinary Center (which includes the French Culinary Institute and the Italian Culinary Academy), will this coming April introduce a new course: the Estate Management Studies program. Its purpose is to ‘train a new caliber of household staff.’ As Dorothy recently told the Wall Street Journal, “I have a couple of homes and a few people who worked for me. It always fell to the wife to run the home. I thought there are a lot of women in my position, who were looking for a chief of staff.” To ‘run’ this course, Dorothy has found perhaps the perfect person. Christopher Ely! Who you ask is Christopher Ely? Well, he has to be English, and indeed he is. Ely started his career when he was 18 as a footman at Buckingham Palace, working for Prince Charles and Princess Diana in the good (and . . .

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Tony D'Souza talks to New Yorker columnist and bestselling author Ken Auletta

KEN AULETTA HAS WRITTEN the “Annals of Communications” columns for The New Yorker since 1992, and is the author of eleven books, including five national bestsellers. His latest, Googled: The End of The World As We Know It, chronicles the ubiquitous company’s rise to prominence. Among Ken’s other books are: Three Blind Mice: How the TV Networks Lost Their Way; Greed And Glory On Wall Street: The Fall of The House of Lehman; and Media Man: Ted Turner’s Improbable Empire. In ranking him as America’s premier media critic, the Columbia Journalism Review concluded, “no other reporter has covered the new communications revolution as thoroughly as has Auletta.” He has been chosen a Literary Lion by the New York Public Library, and one of the 20th Century’s top 100 business journalists by a distinguished national panel of peers. Auletta grew up on Coney Island, attended public schools, earned a B.S. from . . .

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A Writer Writes: The Chronicle of Sargent Shriver

The Chronicle of Sargent Shriver  By Thomas Hebert (Nigeria 1962-64) Unlike the death of John or Robert Kennedy, Elvis Presley, the beginning of the 1968 North Vietnamese Tet Offensive, or the Watergate Break-in, I confess I can’t remember where I was when I learned of Sargent Shriver’s death. It’s taken some days for this passage to sink in, become knowable. But it comes back. You see, in an earlier time, I wrote a bit of something about this American and his contributions to our life. My words appear in a long-ago Job Application and a writing sample, below, which I included with it. The position: The National Chronicler (Senior Executive Service, by Presidential Appointment). Closing date: June  15, 1995. Unfortunately that Clinton-era initiative never went beyond seeking applicants. It was quickly submerged in Republican assaults on the Administration. Few remember the story. (The entire annotated Position Description will be published . . .

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Dennis Grubb's Notes from Sarge's wake and funeral Mass

[Dennis Grubb (Colombia 1961-63) send me these notes from the Wake and Mass] Friday: At Holy Trinity Church , Georgetown ( JFK’s neighborhood church) along with several hundred “Shriver friends, exPCV’s, Special Olympics staff , exOEO staff “” 5 children, 19 grandchildren, the ex Governor of California . Along with many RPCV’s ( Jerry Critchley, Georgina McGuire, Maureen Carroll) and I attended the wake and eulogies for Sarge. Barney Hopewell and Dan Wemoff of my Group were  cited in the early condolence line and before the official program began at 6:45 C-Span was there and if you are interested in the eulogies delivered by Bill Moyers, Chris Dodd, Maureen Orth ( Colombia XIII), Steny Hoyer ( D-MD) ,C.Payne Lucas (PC Director-Africa),and Washington Post columnist Coleman McCarthy check the C-Span achieves.  Saturday: At the unique mass for Sarge at Our Lady of Mercy in Potomac , Maryland about 10 miles from . . .

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At Sarge's Wake

Don Beil (Somalia 1964–66) shares thoughts on the wake held for Sargent Shriver in Washington, DC this past Friday. • Robert Sargent Shriver Wake Open to the public Friday, January 21 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. Holy Trinity Catholic Church Washington, D.C. THE CHURCH DOORS DID NOT OPEN UNTIL 4:00 p.m., so having arrived 20 long minutes early I stood outside with a small group of mourners in the bitter cold. A handful of photographers and videographers waited across the street. For unknown reasons, other than to have something to keep them moving in the cold — even if it was only a finger — they took pictures of the short line. Perhaps it was my uneasiness at being this close to something religious that signaled something of interest to them. Accompanied by police sirens, a hearse arrived followed by a large white limousine-labeled bus. Shrivers, apparently — for most are . . .

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Where to Write the Shriver Family

A spokesperson for the Shriver Family suggested that the best place to send a note or card to the family would be: Shriver Family Special Olympics 1133 19th Street Washington, D.C. 20036 [If you could, please forward this address onto RPCV friends. Not everyone checks this website (well, it is an imperfect world).] Thank you.

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Shriver's Wake

Speaking at the wake this afternoon/evening will be Bill Moyers, first Deputy Director of the Peace Corps;  Maureen Orth (Colombia PCV); C. P.  Lucas (CD Niger, and African Regional Director 1962-67); Colman McCarthy, and others. WAKE OPEN TO PUBLIC Friday, January 21 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. Holy Trinity Catholic Church

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