My first trip to Politics & Prose

On most days, I live by my (Google) calendar. If it’s not on my calendar, it doesn’t exist to me. And if it on my calendar, however incorrect, I will take it as fact. Today was one of those days.

I hurried to Politics & Prose — which I can’t believe it’s taken me so long to get to, btw — for what I thought would be a talk by Chris Cillizza on his latest book, which is naturally about politics. I arrived about 9 minutes late because of the swarm of Zoo goers who confusingly exit and board the L2. Because of my hurried arrival, I thought the gentleman giving the talk vaguely looked like Chris sans glasses maybe? I actually don’t remember now. The part I walked in on was about epicurean something or another and I thought, well, food and politics is interesting.

I checked the calendar on my phone — yep, it is tonight. Now skeptical of my own shoddy data entry, I go to the P&P website and pull up their calendar. (Sidenote: they really should do something about their web calendar not being fitted to a mobile device — might I suggest responsive design?) The talk is scheduled for next Saturday. Of course. I can’t tell you why it took me so long to realize that this was not, in fact, the talk I came to see.

The talk I did stumble upon was Jefferson Morley’s on his newest book, Snow-storm in August, which was actually very interesting, as the fates would have it. The book is a history of the race riots that erupted in DC in 1835 following an attempted murder of a socialite by her slave. I’m not going to attempt to summarize the book beyond that, but I will mention that Jefferson made a really interesting point during the Q&A — that the Civil War is being taught incorrectly and that it should be taught with a longer historical arc. The Civil War wasn’t just a moment in time, but a 30 year history of slavery that culminated with the Civil War. Anyway, the talk was lovely and I’m glad I stumbled upon it.

After I finished paying for my books and magazines (they sell Monocole!), I walked by Chris Cillizza’s book — the one I was here to listen to him speak about — so I picked it up and went back to pay for it. On my walk home, I looked at the receipt for no reason aside than in passing to throw it away and realized that the clerk gave me the 20% discount for members. I am not sure whether he was amused that this girl who just spent a bunch of money wanted to spend even more, or whether he just assumed I was a member.

Either way, calendar mistakes are all right.

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