Tuesday, November 25, 2008


This piece nicely sums up how I've felt about the last eight years. I know I'm not alone. Michael Moore had a book a few years ago - "Dude, where's my country." That's what so many of us were asking - as we contemplated the dizzying speed with which constitutional guarantees were discarded like so many campaign promises. Obama is the focus of many high hopes - and he's bound to disappoint some people sometimes, but on balance I think we may actually be on the way to taking the USA back on path where government enacts policies to benefit the nation as a whole, rather than a privileged elite.

Unfortunately, one person who will not see this new era will be Brent Hurd. In some of his last blog postings, he wrote about his hopes for the new administration. Brent was writing from Bangalore, India, where he was hit and killed by a bus on Saturday. He was a young and talented film maker and teacher, much loved by his Azerbaijani students here.

My own connection with Brent is strange. I only spoke to him once and we exchanged perhaps a half dozen e-mails. He impressed me as a warm and intelligent person, but I didn't really have the opportunity to know him. But - in some sense, we have some shared experience because I have been living in his old apartment since March. I sent him a picture of the sunrise once from this apartment, and he appreciated the memory. That was probably my last contact with him.

Life is fragile and brief. Love it.