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Brian’s Blog: Inauguration Day Spurs Memories

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I’ve always had a strong sense and love of history. Inauguration Day is a huge day for our country,  but it also revives personal memories.


When was in elementary school, some teachers would bring a small, portable, black and white TV to school so students could watch the inauguration ceremonies. Later in high school, it was time to write a paper on the inauguration’s constitutional significance. Later, I would skip a college class to see the inauguration on TV.

Three inauguration days really bring back some personal memories.

Inauguration Day in 1989. George H.W. Bush takes office. It was an exciting day as my then wife and I had purchased our first house, and were doing moving in chores,. It was a day full of hope and anticipation for us.

Inauguration Day in 1993. Bill Clinton Takes office. My soon to be ex-wife had served me with divorce papers. Not a fun time. It struck me how four years earlier, we had moved into our house with a lot of hopes and dreams, but now it was just a cold and empty place. My personal life was pretty well shot for all of 1993. I still blame Bill Clinton.

Inauguration Day in 1965. Lyndon B. Johnson takes office in his elected term. As I was sitting in line at Dutch Brother’s Coffee this morning listening to President Obama’s speech, this is the one that popped into my mind, but with a weird twist.

We all have teachers that stick out in our memories. Some we loved, some we could take or leave, and some we disliked. My fourth grade teacher falls into the last category.

We had watched LBJ’s inauguration on the previously mentioned portable black and white TV. Our assignment was to write 100 words on what we remembered seeing and what it meant. I wrote 101 words. My teacher made me stand in front of the class and used me as an example of someone who could not follow directions. Fourth grade humiliation is hard to take when you are 9 and a half years old. To this day, I don’t like that teacher, for that and many other reasons.

As this was turning over in my mind in the short time my coffee was being prepared, I asked myself: “Is it OK to really dislike someone for nearly 50 years?”

This is going to take more thought.

Learn more about this year’s inauguration here.



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