April 13, 2008

Even Jerks can be right about some things

I love history. If you have visited here any length of time you know that. But history is full of periods and subjects and disciplines. There is ancient history, Asian history, art history, American History, European History, Political History, Military History, blah, blah, blah. One era I have never really enjoyed in the history of the Middle Ages. Feudalism, serfs, snooooze...As a history major in College I took one course in that subject. The professor was a retired member of the faculty and was quite good, probably because he had been teaching the subject for about 60 years, or maybe because he was alive in the middle ages. The required text was big and brown and weighed about 6 pounds. More significantly, it cost well over $100.00. That was a steep price in the early 1980s. My copy was stolen from under my desk the second day of class during lecture. I know who took it, but I could not prove it. I made it through (with an A) by paying real close attention and borrowing the text from a guy down the hall. My appreciation of the history of the Middle Ages did not improve.

Years later I had a boss who was a complete dick. He was the worse boss I have ever had. For example, he thought his salesmen should read from a script when they visited customers. You cannot imagine the laughs this got at the sales meeting. Anyway, he was always talking about this novel set in the Middle Ages. He knew I loved history and thought I would enjoy it. I avoided the tome for two reasons: He recommended it, and it was about the Middle Ages. The book was The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett. It details the lives and fortunes of those building a cathedral. I know, snooze city. I fianlly broke down and bought the paperback version.

Trust me, this is one terrific book. In fact, you owe me big time because I am spending my Sunday telling you about this book instead of reading the last twenty pages. I will not say more. Do not let the subject or time period keep you from reading this novel. Read it, you will thank me later.

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