Here’s something I never said to my mother when she asked, “What happened at school today?”
The conflict managers put on a show called, “American Conflict.”
Apparently it was a spoof on “American Idol.” The person with the best conflict resolution won a million bucks. (Just in case you ever find yourself in a contest like this, the winning suggestion was: “I think you should work it out.”)
Actually, there are lots of things in school today that weren’t there when I was a kid, by cracky. Here we are in the final week of class, and learning has basically stopped. The special sections — art, music, etc. — have been given over to the video, and we’re into a round of parties, celebrations and hoppin’ throwdowns.
Who decided children would learn more if they attended school for 180 days? Oh, right — legislators.
Otherwise, a hot day. Turned on the A/C, packed boxes, negotiated voice mail. Discovered I couldn’t get my old phone number back, after a mere 10 months — it’s been reassigned already. In the middle of it all, I took a bike ride. Even in the heat, the hill homestretch is now merely a nuisance, a sign that all that cottage cheese on my thighs is merely camouflage for legs of steel and wire. I can now officially kick a man to death. Don’t tempt me.
You know, I haven’t said much about Ronald Reagan. What’s the point? He had his charms and sterling qualities and was loved by millions — let them have their week. I may spend it quietly contemplating how a man whose family was a dysfunctional train wreck came to be known as an advocate for family values, how a guy who never went to church is remembered as a great Christian president, and all the rest of it. But I think we rounded a curve today, and are officially in Princess Dianaland. Behold, the prose of presidential daughter Patti Davis, who built a writing career out of first hating her parents and then being all reconciled ‘n’ stuff. She was not so upset by her father’s death that she couldn’t manage to scratch out a few lines for the chronicler of our times, People:
And as Nancy Reagan publicly showed her heartbreak, details of her final private moment with the love of her life were revealed last night as one of deep sorrow and miraculous surprise.
The former First Lady believes her long-suffering husband recognized her when he stared into her eyes for an instant before taking his last breath, his daughter Patti Davis writes.
“It was the greatest gift he could have given me,” the former First Lady told her family.
Sobbing, shaking and knowing death was imminent, she held her husband’s hand about 1 p.m. Saturday as he inhaled deeply and opened his eyes for the first time in five days.
While most thought Alzheimer’s disease had robbed former President Reagan of all his memory, the last look he gave his wife was one of deep acknowledgment, Davis writes for People magazine in its upcoming edition.
“At the last moment when his breathing told us this was it, he opened his eyes and looked straight at my mother. Eyes that had not opened for days did, and they weren’t chalky or vague,” Davis recalls. “They were clear and blue and full of life. If a death can be lovely, his was.”
Glad to know you got a paycheck out of it, Patti.
I’ll stop now. You all carry on.