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Memoir

Winter 2019

Flour Sacks: A Memoir

The hot sun glared down on my dark skin as I stepped into the familiar dirt street of Laredo, Peru that day in 1984. Children played hopscotch and jacks on the sidewalk while women outside their small concrete homes swept away dust that had settled overnight. Men walked to the sugar cane fields and factories, while boys kicked a ball to the park. A few young adults lingered outside their doorsteps and watched as the world passed them by, and three ladies down the street would be out speaking in their native tongue and giggling about things that mattered only to them.

I was 11 … » More …

Winter 2018

Backwater Sunday: A personal memory

The weather was freezing at the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation when the Dakota Access Pipeline protests turned violent on November 20, 2016. Native Americans opposed the 1,200-mile oil pipeline on the grounds that it violated the rights of the tribe and passed through Lake Oahe, a sacred burial site and major source of drinking water. This fall marks the second anniversary of the bloody incident, which is remembered as Backwater Sunday.

 

“Look out!” someone shouts as fiery tear gas canisters streak through the midnight sky. The cell phone video careens sharply as images of smoke and military vehicles come into view. In the darkness, … » More …

Cover of Bound
Summer 2018

Bound

Cover of Bound

James McKean ’68, ’74

Truman State University Press: 2017

 

Bound presents a lyrical memoir about growing up in the Pacific Northwest and the women whose feminine fortitude contributed to the author’s life.

Taking readers into the kitchens and parlors of mid-twentieth-century America, McKean lovingly unpacks the attic trunk, sharing the exploits of his wife, mother, grandmother, and great-great-grandmother-in-law Rachel Cartwright Lee, among others.

At a time when ladies were expected to stay … » More …

Green and Roughshod cover
Winter 2017

Green and Roughshod: I Should’ve Stayed a Montana Cowboy

Green and Roughshod cover

Dan H. McLachlan ’66, ’69 MA

Aventine Press: 2016

 

The dream of a little boy to become a cowboy came true for Dan McLachlan. He read a 1927 text, All in the Day’s Riding, as an eighth-grader in Palo Alto, California, and became enamored with the vision of a wide blue sky viewed from horseback. After earning enough to buy two horses and tack, he eventually ended up in Montana for … » More …

Fred Kamaka in uniform
Spring 2017

The 1941 Attack on Pearl Harbor

A personal history by Fred Kamaka ’51

The morning of Sunday, December 7, 1941 proved to be clear with just a few clouds scattered above the Hickam Field/Pearl Harbor area. It would be extremely hot by 4 p.m. in the afternoon, the time scheduled for our Sunday parade for that month. During breakfast the cadets sitting at my table were all discussing the parade, for the competition between companies would be keen this year. It meant a lot to me as I was assigned to lead my squad for the competition from my company. My classmate, Rowland Melim, and I were dining room orderlies for … » More …

Pardon My French
Fall 2016

Pardon My French: How a Grumpy American Fell in Love with France

Pardon My French

Allen Johnson ’85 PhD

Yucca Publishing: 2015

Funny, sexy, smart. If I only had three words in which to tell you about the pleasures of Allen Johnson’s Pardon My French, those’d be the ones.

Johnson spent a year in France with his wife, Nita, and Pardon My French relates their adventures in short vignettes arranged thematically.

One of the themes is that the French are not like us: They have their own special … » More …