Hi friends, how are ya?! Tell me what you did this weekend, I must know.
I did lots of important things, like tanning….
and eating lots of Tex-Mex….
and making a general fool of myself with Les…..
And somewhere in between all of those things, Madison got married!!!!
She looked absolutely STUNNING, and I lost it for real when she walked down the aisle. Mad, I am SO SO HAPPY for you and Bryce and am so thankful I could be there to celebrate with you two.
Les and I had some extra time after the wedding to roam around Dallas, and after firmly deciding that we did not, in fact, like Texas at all,
I unilaterally chose we wound up at the Sixth Floor Museum at the location of President Kennedy’s assassination. I was actually really excited to be there, because I had just finished reading Stephen King’s 11/22/63 for my book club. (Did I tell you I’m in a book club? Once a month, ten of us get drunk on red wine and talk about sex.) The book, while convoluted and complicated, is essentially about a time traveling man who tries to prevent the Kennedy assassination from happening. As you can imagine, the book references tons and tons of details about Dealey Plaza and Lee Harvey Oswald, and as I was reading, I realized that I knew very little about the assassination. Essentially, I knew that a president had died, but I didn’t know much about the president himself, or the motivations of the shooter, or the chain of events, or the worldwide repercussions. So even though I had read the book and enjoyed it, I was really excited about getting some context in which to place the books’ events.
The museum is on the sixth floor of the book depository from which Oswald shot the president. It’s an all-audio tour, which I really appreciated because it moved you along briskly and you didn’t feel obligated to linger over any specific exhibit. It was devoted mostly to Kennedy himself, and spent lots of time discussing his presidency and his various policy achievements and failures. It then moved into a play-by-play of the 30 minutes surrounding the shooting, followed by in depth looks at the worldwide responses and the various conspiracies. I wish it had delved a little bit more into Oswald and his background, because the book really made him out to be a tortured young man who, while utterly despicable, had a tough life and various conflicting beliefs. Aside for minimal information on him, I thought the museum was extremely well done, and really a neat place to visit. Especially for someone who did not live through the event, it did a great job of making you feel the urgency of the afternoon and the following immense sadness that not only enveloped the country, but the world.
Photography wasn’t allowed in the museum, but here is the original building sign that has been preserved:
(Aside for the sixth floor, the building now houses city offices. Wouldn’t you find it a little creepy to work there every day?)
Les and I then wandered over to the JFK Memorial, which is, well, unusual. Have you ever been?
I suppose the symbolism behind the monument is meaningful (a strong, quiet refuge within which one finds the strength to stand firm and steadfast against the world), but to me it screams 1970s architecture and is less impressive than what I expected for a president with a story as compelling as Kennedy’s.
Were you alive when President Kennedy was shot? I think I’ve mentioned it here before, but the 1960s fascinate me and I am embarassed at how slight my knowledge of this event was. I’ve heard that it was the 9/11 of my generation–people remember where they were when it happened, a moment that signified a shift in the world as they knew it. Perhaps what I’m even more curious about–were you watching TV when Jack Ruby shot Oswald? I didn’t realize that the prisoner transfer was broadcast over live television; imagine the trauma young children must have felt at literally witnessing death.
Anyways, if you’re ever in the Dallas area, I suggest the Sixth Floor Museum as a must see. That being said, however, it costs $13.50 to get in, whereas all the museums in DC are f-r-e-e, so come visit me first.
In other news, check out this HUGE-ASS engagement ring that my friend Lis got this past weekend! Her boyfriend proposed while they were in Paris (awwwww!!) and I swear to you, I don’t know how she can even lift up her hand. Mazel Tov to you, Lis & Adam, I couldn’t be happier.