Some five or ten years ago I found that I was “obsolete” and needed a ‘Plan B’. Call it my Larry Crowne moment. ‘Plan B’ was a Masters Degree, or so I thought at the time. I was wrong. Right out of grad school, I found out that the world was not what I thought it was and that the problems I was dealing with, as well as the questions I was asking, were things that others were asking. Join me as I deal with everything from beating the high cost of bread (the kind I eat and the kind I earn) to how to live a life of the mind—while not going out of your mind in the process.
In a real way, my own Masters thesis showed the way, by impacting the city of Natchez, Mississippi–forcing a long needed change in a forgotten landmark. In the process of writing up the history of World War I (1917-1918) veterans of Adams County, I found a monument to the veterans that was a work of the “Jim Crow” era. The monument was a list of only white vets, not black. In the face of historic documents to prove it, the local people demanded change, and next month they get it. In this way, I became a “Public Historian”—the person you hire to check out a forgotten piece of the past before you change or restore it. I don’t know where I am going, but I am on the way.