- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 30, 2000

Pi 'slightly off'?

"While we're talking about recounts …

"I think I may have done better on my SATs. I also think I won the New Jersey state lottery last week… .

"I think my cholesterol is lower. I think that my ZIP code is one digit off and that I deserve more frequent-flier miles… .

"I think I may have had fewer moving violations on my newer car, with more cylinders and fewer miles. I think I'm taller. I think I read a lot more and watch much less television. I think I have more channels.

"I think I may have been a Beatle… . I think pi slightly off… .

"I think I bought Yahoo stock much earlier. I think I sold it. I think I birdied the 18th.

"I think I overpaid my taxes and underreported my personal expenses and charitable donations. I think the refund is way, way overdue… .

"I think, therefore I am more."

Rick Moranis, writing on "My Personal Recount," in Monday's New York Times

Good idea gone bad

"The public school is a wonderful idea, but we've lost that idea. The universities are in turmoil over irrelevant things, and the offerings that they make to students are often ludicrous… .

"We have forgotten what a school is. A school is a place where teaching and learning occur, or should occur. Instead of that, all sorts of purposes, programs, methods, and fancy gadgetry have taken the place of that simple, but difficult, operation of teaching and having others learn… . In the first place, education requires well-trained teachers, which we haven't got, because irrelevant ideas have invaded the teacher training system, so that we turn out people who are geared to do something other than what teaching and learning require… .

"[W]e keep throwing money into the pit and nothing has improved. There are some difficulties. For example, the natural supply of teachers that we could rely on has been far exceeded by the number of children to teach. A born teacher is a very rare animal, and the number of non-teachers that you can train into the semblance of a good teacher is also limited and further reduced by the fact that we pay teachers so poorly on the whole."

Jacques Barzun, interviewed by Charlotte Hays in the Autumn issue of the Women's Quarterly

Changing town

"Nashville is changing as rapidly as the crossover country music that gave the place its 'Music City USA' nickname. In recent years, Nashville has gone from a town of sequined singers and fiddle-picking musicians to a thriving metropolis with a winning football team, high-tech corporations, and hip urban architecture.

"To many residents, however, these economic gains have come at the cost of the city's country Western charm… . Many fear the city is on track to become another Atlanta or Dallas… .

"Since the founding of the Grand Ole Opry in 1925, Nashville has prided itself on its cultural heritage. From the sweet crooning of Patsy Cline to the edgy vocals of the Dixie Chicks, the city has long relied on its musical roots to lure tourists… .

"County music fans once visited museums owned by country stars on Music Row. Nearly all of those have closed, but fans keep making pilgrimages to Nashville in hopes of a glimpse of Dolly Parton or Garth Brooks… .

"Nashville officials are quick to say that the city is not abandoning its country music roots, but rather emphasizing them in modern ways. The Gaylord Entertainment Center honors the musical heritage with a replica of the WSM radio tower the station that launched the Opry. When the Titans play in Nashville, a country music star always sings the 'The Star Spangled Banner.' "

Suzi Parker, writing on "Nashville tuning out country music heritage," in Tuesday's Christian Science Monitor

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