Revisiting the week

This afternoon I went to the fifth lecture in five days. Each one was different, not only in content, but even more in presentation. As a former Toastmaster I found this fascinating. The first lecture, on healthcare, used Powerpoint as a guide for herself, to make sure she covered all of her points. She went so quickly on some of them I didn't have time to finish reading.

BTW, the New Yorker has an excellent article about healthcare by Atul Gawande in the current issue. Even though I have been working for a single payer system his argument makes tremendous sense to me. 

The second lecture, on government regulation, used no visual aids but gave us several handouts: one of her columns; a memo from Rahm Emanuel about regulation sent out on January 20; a diagram of the regulatory process; and information about her book, The Regulators, all interesting and useful.

The third lecture, about our foreign policy, used some very old, stained and faded overhead projector slides, along with bad jokes and lots of sarcasm. A professor who has won several teaching awards probably felt the need to entertain us. Do you get that I hated him, jokes and all?

Friday afternoon, the fourth lecture was given by a retired general. He was wonderfully organized, very pleasant and gave a good lecture about stuff I never thought about. Can't ask for more than that.

These lectures were all part of the Osher program at Pitt. Today I went to a presentation at CMU (Carnegie Mellon), the other big one here. This was about Arthur Szyk, (pronounced shick) an almost forgotten artist who lived from 1894 to 1951, and who created amazing illustrations of books from the bible and equally amazing illustrations responding to events of World War 2. There is an excellent website about him here and more illustrations of his work here.

This lecture was held at the Tepper Business School at CMU in a room with a monitor in front of each very comfortable chair. The illustrations appeared on each of the monitors as well as a large screen at the front of the room. It was a wonderful luxury to be able to look closely at each of the pictures. 

Most people have never heard of Szyk, or never heard his name pronounced so didn't realize who he was. I was always looking for beautiful books, even as a child, and remember seeing his Andersen's Fairy Tales and Rubiyat of Omar Khayyam, as well as his Hagaddah. I wish I owned copies of them.

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