Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Thanks Jerry

Gerald R. Ford seems like an unlikely source for life advice, but with his passing, a wealth of quotation treasures have been unearthed.

On Aug. 8 Mr. Nixon announced on national television that he would resign the presidency at noon on Aug. 9. Mr. Ford and his wife watched the Nixon statement on the television set in the family room of their home in Alexandria. Then, despite the looming accumulation of pressures, Mr. Ford went to sleep.

That he could do so, with no particular difficulty, on the eve of the nation's most unusual presidential transition, was illustrative. "My feeling is you might as well get to sleep" whatever the circumstances, Mr. Ford had said. "You'll feel better the next day. If you've got a problem, you are better prepared to deal with it tomorrow. You sure can't do much about it that night. It's a blessing, really."

I definitely learned more about President Ford from that New York Times article this morning than I ever learned in history class. Unfortunately, the eloquence of the article underscores the fact that it most likely was not written overnight - rather, like the obituaries of many elder famous personalities, it is the product of much advance labor. Regardless, it left me feeling like I wished I'd been alive when he rescued our fractured nation. It sounds so romantic.


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