June 4, 2008

Philosophy and Biography

"He was the children's governor."

"He had a common touch."

"He had a legendary sense of humor."

Almost a year after my first interview, it's still tough to coax good details out of the simplest subjects. Platitudes come easy. Which would be fine for a philosophical tract, but not for a vignette-and-anecdote biography.

Usually, the best anecdotes just come spontaneously--not because of some savvy question I asked. It just arrives and I'm never sure of the cause.

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