Thoughts About Annals

08 Mar 2007


According to Garrison Keillor's fascinating daily newsletter, The Writer's Almanac, today is the birthday of John McPhee, who "won the Pulitzer Prize for his book about the geology of America, Annals of the Former World." Of course, I know that the word "annals" means, simply, a historical record (or, something like that, anyway). But, I just can't help smirking anytime I read or hear it. That's all I wanted to say today.

Oh, BTW, that's John and his wife, Yolanda, above. She's noticeably less trailer-park-trash-looking than I'd have expected for a Yolanda. Must be a whole different breed of Yolandas in the Princeton area than there were where I grew up. In the Midwest, the last Yolanda I knew was a career-long server at a local Steak n Shake. She was 35 or so, dating a 17-year old at the time. Most people who learned of this commented on the couple representing a rare match-up between the male and female sexual peak. Fortunately, I didn't get many of the details, though, as I was busy fetching customers' milkshakes and sodas (and then "accidentally" forgetting to ring them up, which often resulted in their leaving me an above-average tip as a thank you -- little trick I invented). So, I can't tell you if that Yolanda had much to do with Annals. In the end (pun intended), we're all better off for not knowing, I'm sure.

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