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Blog and Newsletters


I couldn’t wait to see Rachel Maddow when she came to Mt. Holyoke College this month. I was one of the first 100 people to reserve a ticket; a very modest $5 secured my place in general seating. She felt like an old friend coming home. Only Rachel didn’t know she was an old friend, which is how it goes with one-way relationships.
Rachel and I had a radio relationship. When she started out on a local talk radio show (WRSI, she was host of The Big Breakfast), I timed my commute to a job at a state university so that I could hear 45 minutes of pure, wicked witty Rachel. I discovered her, I’m sure I did. I told all who would listen about the giant brain of Rachel Maddow who had a Ph.D. from Oxford and was funny as well as red-hot smart. And Liberal, did I say that? How wondrous to have our own liberal talk radio gal.
So there she was at Chapin Auditorium, talking to 1400 adoring fans, who had also purchased her brand new book. Some people even bought the legal limit of three books. We were sternly warned that “Ms. Maddow will be signing her signature only. No posed photographs, no inscriptions.”
I waited in the very long line while she signed her new book and I started to think what it must be like to sign your name at least 1400 times in one night, to have to say “Hi” 1400 times, and what would it be like to have a standing ovation just for walking out on a stage. As I inched along in the line, I wondered if we have already loved her too much, expected perfection from her, and if we had already taken away what all of us value above all else, our privacy. I thought about saying, “Hey Rachel, I used to listen to you on The Big Breakfast,” but instead, I slid the open book in front of her to sign. She’ll never know what buddies we used to be as I drove to work.
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