John is an Indiana native who moved to Oak Park in 1976. He served on the District 97 school board, coached youth sports and, more recently, retired from the law. That left him time to become a Wednesday Journal columnist and now a blogger. John has some pretty strong opinions about Oak Park and a wry way of putting them across. You won't want to leave his blog without leaving a comment of your own.
American tradition holds that when, on Oct. 19, 1781, the British army surrendered to the combined American and French forces at Yorktown, Virginia, the British drummers and fifers played the tune "The World Turn'd Upside Down."
Accounts say that some of the 8,000 troops wept and some were drunk. Others threw down their weapons in anger or disgust. None of them could believe that the upstart colonial army could defeat the then-reigning world's greatest power in a war.
For the last couple of weeks I've been thinking about my dad who would have been 99 years old on Jan. 2. I thought he was going to be 100. Yikes! They say memory is the first thing to go. He was 91 when he died.
I've grown a little bit too fond of drinking an Old Fashioned before dinner. So I began a protocol of substituting a walk for a drink at dusk. One of my promenades took me past the Dole branch of the Oak Park Library. On a whim, I decided to go in. Now I have been there a number of times, but it had been a while.
In the course of human history there have occurred events so unexpectedly cataclysmic as to require us to rethink our world view. Plagues, earthquakes, floods and eclipses have forced people into abandoning old ways of thinking, and coming up with new ways to look at the world. After Copernicus and Luther, things were never the same.