Ah...in this time of political turmoil, everything becomes a conflict. I am on the side of those who believe the Nobel committee got it right. Who could have ever captured the heart and soul of an entire generation with his poetry any better than that nasally sounding guy from Duluth, Minnesota? His words helped define a generation that used those words to help stop a war, fight for civil rights and bury way too many of their heroes.
We know Bob Dylan because of the songs that he (and almost every singer of his time) sang for us, but those songs were simply poetry put to music. In fact, 492 of his poems were put to music and shared with a country (actually a world) that felt those words in their soul. No other poet ever reached so many people who claimed to dislike poetry. While I am one of those people who actually likes classical literature, I understand that literature has evolved through the years, and it is good to see all aspects of it glorified.
Speaking of evolving, I wish I could say that this last debate showed a growth in our candidates. The only differences in this debate from the first were better moderating and a bit more prep time (and a bit less hysteria) from Donald Trump. He kept harping on the same tired subjects, and she did the same. They both obviously brought talking points that they were determined to get to, whether those topics were discussed or not. Hillary probably brought her best game. She looked poised and presidential, and she tried to move around the topics that showed her weaknesses. Donald looked somewhat controlled for the first half hour and then slowly fell back into his pattern of attack. Wallace did an admirable job controlling the debate.
Unfortunately, no one can control the anxiety that is being provoked around this election. Everybody I know is feeling nervous and unsure whenever he or she turns on the television or picks up a newspaper. This is not the way it is supposed to be in America. The fact that one candidate is threatening to refuse to give in to the will of the people before the people have even had a chance to speak is telling the world that our election has dissolved into third world tactics that must be challenged.
On the other hand, I feel lucky to live in a country where all of this rhetoric can go on without arrests, government intervention or massive violence. Those who tried resorting to violence were in the vast minority and quickly ridiculed by both parties.
The fact that all of our citizenry can watch the good, the bad and the ugly without censor, and then we can each make an informed decision, is the very thing that makes us great. Hopefully, on November 8 we will all peacefully go to the polls and vote for the person who we believe is best prepared to run our country. Hopefully, on January 20th we will all stand behind this person as he/she tries to lead this great country filled with sometimes conflicting opinions. Can we, as a unit, once again show the world how great America truly is? To quote our latest Nobel Prize winner, " the answer is blowing in the wind."
Dylan's songs have always amazed me, and I wondered were he got the ideas behind them. The book I reviewed today, Bob Dylan: All the Songs - The Story Behind Every Track helps clear up the mystery. In it, authors Philippe Margotin and Jean-Michel Guesdon tell us all of the secrets behind all of the songs. It is a fun book to read and a great book to give as a gift.
While you are gifting, Harlan Coben is always a great idea. His latest Myron Bolitar book, Home, will make his fans happy and earn him many new ones. All of the usual characters support him in this story about the search for two young men who went missing ten years ago. Coben at his finest!
As always, complete reviews of both books follow this blog.