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November 26, 2020. Fairfax, South Carolina

Q. Happy Thanksgiving, Professor! Can I get you something cold to drink?

A. You might twist my arm.

Q. Make yourself comfortable. I’ll be right back.

A. Sure.

Q. Before dinner, I wonder if you would consent to a short interview?

A. Fire away.

Q. You’ve been teaching and studying history most of your adult life. In a few words, what have you learned?

A. In a few words! Are you serious? Hmm….well, I’ve learned that history is repetitious and certain themes are apparent throughout time and place. How’s that?

Q. Not bad! Now tell me what led you to study history?

A. As a youngster, I was lucky enough to visit many historical venues in Europe and Japan, and there are several generations of history buffs in my family.

Q. In other words you're a military brat like me.

A. Yes you can say that. We're both army brats.

Q. And we've both lived all over the world . . .

A. That's right. And I still love to travel. Can't wait for this virus to be over so I can get back to it!

Q. I hear that! Now, do you have any times and places you most enjoy reading about?

A. Sure, all historians do. For me, it’s early 20th century Europe and the Meiji era in Japan.

Q. Please name some of your favorite authors.

A. Barbara Tuchman tops the list. Herbert Muller, David McCulloch are close behind. I admire Tuchman’s wide range of subject matter, which is unusual for historians.

Q. Favorite books?

A. The Proud Tower, Mind of the South, Only Yesterday, and everything by Nikos Kazantzakis.

Q. Have you ever met anyone famous?

A. Senator Eugene McCarthy, John McCain, Walter Cronkite, and Norman Mailer.

Q. Wow! You've gotten around. So, if you could go back in time, what year and what place would you go to?

A. That's easy. I would return to the year of my birth with the caveat I knew then what I know now.

Q. Ha-ha that would be fun! Well that’s about all I have.

A. Then bring on the turkey!

  • Writer's pictureBill Glass

Up until last week, I could have answered no to that question. But then there I was standing ankle-deep in mud on the bank of a tidal creek on Edisto Island. I was holding a 20” Speckled Trout and getting ready to throw it back. The sun was just up, filtering through the Spanish-moss draped oaks. This was the sixth big trout of the morning. It looked beautiful and I couldn’t help planting a smooch on its predatory mouth.

The trout flapped its tail as if to say, “Stick to your own species.” After tossing it into the creek, I tried a few more casts, but the morning run was over. So, I waded back through the mud, then found a relatively clear area next to the water, rinsed my sneakers then got some of the grunge off the rest of me.

My ride was waiting right where I left it. I fastened the rod to the holder, got my helmet on, and cranked her up. On my way back to the campsite, it occurred to me how finding this great fishing hole was thanks to the motorcycle. It’s a 250 cc, one- cylinder model from Suzuki that looks much like my first motorcycle, a Triumph. The night before, a guy parked next to me at a gas station, noticed the bike, and we got to talking about riding. I saw a fishing rod poking out of his car window and asked about likely spots. That’s how I found the muddy bank of that pretty creek.

The next day I headed back to reality with my camping gear on the carry rack and my laptop in the book bag on my back. My good intentions about getting some writing done on this trip had come to naught. Still, I had been given something to think about by a good ole boy in a beat-up car who was so willing to give up his secrets. Isn’t that what writers do? I thought. We let readers in on our deepest secrets.

Bill Glass November 2020

  • Writer's pictureBill Glass

Just kidding! I love my day job which is coaching soccer at a small South Carolina college. For one thing soccer rules! For another it's just a privilege to be associated with young people during such important years of their lives.

Still, there are many days when I feel like I'm being pulled in several directions at once. And many nights when I go to bed feeling inadequate because only half the day's to-do list got done.

All right, I know that many of you are scratching your heads saying, "Welcome to my world!" For you, and for me there is one bit of good news i.e. when you work 24/7 there's no such thing as the Monday blahs!

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