Thursday, August 3, 2017


--Watching "The Sound of Music," with Julie Andrews as the lead actress and Christopher Plummer as the lead actor, inside a movie theater in Berkeley, California.

---Watching "Mary Poppins", starring Julie Andrews and Dick Van Dyke, inside a movie theater in Berkeley, California.

---Watching "My Fair Lady," starring Audrey Hepburn and Rex Harrison, inside a movie theater in Berkeley, California.

---Attending a statewide convention of the Pan American Student Forum in San Antonio, Texas, during my junior high years at O. Henry Junior High School of Austin Independent School District. I can still recall the goosebumps I experienced as I listened to the beautifully performed production of "Guantanamera" inside that first-rate auditorium in San Antonio. The convention was very moving to myself, since it celebrated the wonderful theme of peace and friendship between American citizens and citizens of Latin American countries.

---Watching Hayley Mills movies on a television set of my parents inside my childhood home in Westlake Hills, Texas. I delighted in her sense of wholesome adventure and fine integrity as a young lady in England.

---Attending a speech by Hubert Humphrey, a candidate for President, that he delivered in 1968, or possibly in 1972, at Palmer Auditorium in central Austin. The joyousness of Hubert Humphrey's optimistic and love-filled political and societal vision was a fine inspiration for anyone who watched him deliver a political speech. I found the speech particularly thrilling because I knew that Hubert Humphrey was a favorite political leader of my beloved Mother, Phyllis McMillan, herself a native of Iowa, who drove me to that political speech in Austin.

--Attending in the 21st Century a live Baroque-music performance that was sponsored by a Christian church near UT-Austin. I loved listening to Baroque Era music that was completely free of any piano or electric guitar sounds. How tragic, one notes, that the piano and electric guitar have both had excessive roles in modern music in the West.

--Shaking hands with an Attorney General of Texas, the Harvard-educated Dan Morales, in the early or mid-1990s in my own role at the time as a full-time professional newspaper reporter in west Texas. Dan Morales to this day is the ONLY current or former statewide official of the State Government of Texas, chosen by voters around this entire state in a statewide election, who has ever at any time shaken hands with me. The event at which Attorney General Morales spoke featured 20 or fewer persons attending in a small Texan town (either Snyder, Kermit, Sweetwater, or Pampa), which is one of the reasons why I am nearly certain that when I approached Mr. Morales to speak with in up close, we did also shake hands after his speech inside that public-event center room.

--Shaking hands in person with the Governor of Massachusetts, Michael Dukakis, in 1984, in my capacity as a full-time reporter for "Worcester County News" weekly magazine in Worcester, Massachusetts. Even though I have since resided in Texas on a continuous and uninterrupted basis ever since January 1988, no individual holding the title of Governor of Texas has ever exhibited that kind of in-person respect toward myself at any time in my entire life.

to be continued

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