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In this insightful and funny collection of personal stories Vowell—widely hailed for her inimitable stories on public radio's This American Life—ponders a number of curious questions: Why is she happiest when visiting the sites of bloody struggles like Sale Sarah Vowell travels through the American past and, in doing so, investigates the dusty, bumpy roads of her own life. I'll admit that I”m not one to eagerly debate American politics, the economy or foreign policy, I'm just not articu-literary enough in that way. I've always just figured that what I felt was common sense---I just assume that people, when presented with the facts, can see how inane, well... A majority of The Partly Cloudy Patriot revolves around the 2000 Presidential election. when she has a hissy fit because the VFW placed a flag on her lawn during a 4th of July parade and called them up screaming 'The whole point of that goddamn flag is that people don't stick flags in my yard without asking me! I will admit that I didn't cry over the 2000 election, I think I was too stunned. I think that all, ALL, high schoolers should read this.
Why do people always inappropriately compare themselves to Rosa Parks? But I choose to display my dissent by bursting into tears as Bush finishes up his oath. Oh, please google it) and finishing up with: “During the New Hampshire primary I got in a screaming fight with candidate Gary Bauer – okay, I screamed, he didn't – who had just whipped out a little paperback copy of the Declaration of Independence and Constitution out of his pocket and said that anyone who doesn't believe in God, doesn't believe in those documents because of the phrase 'endowed by their Creator.' I told him that, on the contrary, those documents for me have superceded God, that they are my Bible.” This collection of essays was bittersweet.
Why is a bad life in sunny California so much worse than a bad life anywhere else? And, in the title piece, why must doubt and internal arguments haunt the sleepless nights of the true patriot? She re-affirms my belief that someone out there gets 'it'. I felt her frustration, I enjoyed her family stories, but mostly, I'm so so so appreciative of her. She is what is getting me through these next 32 days of mavericks, joe six-packs, and hockey moms.
Her essays confront a wide range of subjects, themes, icons, and historical moments: Ike, Teddy Roosevelt, and Bill Clinton; Canadian Mounties and German filmmakers; Tom Cruise and Buffy the Vampire Slayer; twins and nerds; the Gettysburg Address, the State of the Union, and George W. The result is a teeming and engrossing book, capturing Vowell's memorable wit and her keen social commentary. Thank you again Sarahstraight up, i am really not a fan of sarah vowell's love affair with american exceptionalism & naked liberal partisanship.
I'll admit that I”m not one to eagerly debate American politics, the economy or foreign policy, I'm just not articu-literary enough in that way. I can't say the same for 2004, there were tears, soon replaced by complete disillusionment.
’ bestselling author of seven nonfiction books on American history and culture.
By examining the connections between the American past and present, she offers personal, often humorous accounts of everything from presidents and their assassins to colonial religious fanatics, as well as thoughts on American Indians, utopian dreamers, pop music and the odd cranky cartographer.
Vowell was the president of the board of 826NYC, a nonprofit tutoring and writing center for students aged 6-18 in Brooklyn, from its founding in 2004 until 2014.
She is still a member of its advisory board, along with its sister organization in Los Angeles, 826LA.
She studies John Winthrop’s 1630 sermon “A Model of Christian Charity” and the bloody story that resulted from American exceptionalism.
And she also traces the relationship of Winthrop, Massachusetts’ first governor, and Roger Williams, the Calvinist minister who founded Rhode Island – an unlikely friendship that was emblematic of the polar extremes of the American foundation.