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A hope note

Talks are going on as to how we will celebrate the 10th anniversary of our book club.
My wife and I are one of five couples who, beginning in 1999, gather on the first Sunday of each month to enjoy a meal ‘ the hosts provide the entr’e and the guests the other parts ‘ and discuss a book.
One of our number, the best and the brightest, died this past summer. His spouse invited the book club to join her, their son and her mother at the cemetery to celebrate Jim’s life and commit his ashes to the earth.
In addition to becoming like family, the club has read and discussed a hundred books. At least 90 of them, if not for the peer pressure, I would not have read. Last month, we had non-fiction, Thomas Friedman’s ‘Hot, Flat, and Crowded.’ Next time it’s a novel, David Wroblewski’s ‘Edgar Sawtelle.’ We aim to exercise both hemispheres of our brain, quite discomforting, however therapeutic, for whomp-sided brains like mine.
Which makes me want to comment on the upcoming switch from analog to digital television. Crawls at the bottom of the television screen for many months have shouted ‘ like an Amber alert ‘ that the switch will take place on Feb. 17, 2009. One television company Web site has next to its warning, ‘Your old TV will soon be obsolete!’ a clock counting down days, hours, minutes, seconds and milliseconds (!) until ‘the switch.’
Perish the thought that we won’t be ready, that we might point our remote at the boob tube on Feb. 17 and not get ‘The Price Is Right.’
Consider the thought that a superior use of mind and time might be to take in hand a good piece of literature, with a view to discussing it with someone we love.

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