OUTRIGHT GIFTS OF JFK
To Orwell Today,
re: FROST DEDICATES JFK OUTRIGHT
I was just looking up the Gift Outright to remember the exact words when Google brought me to your website.
Thank you so much for posting it. I was a 13 year old who was sitting in the stands on that frigid day when Frost attempted to make his remarks. It was so bright and cold that the moment is frozen in time for me. I recall that the new Vice President (LBJ) came to the aid of Frost during his attempt to read. There appeared to be some sort of smoke, as if the wiring had caught fire near the podium, perhaps the speaker system.
The inaugural was a great treat for me. I had taken leave of my 7th grade classes in Los Angeles and flown to Washington for the event.
Thanks for the memories!
It's godincidental that you write regarding Frost's "Gift Outright" poem because just yesterday I was listening to JFK's Inaugural Address on the LP Album pictured above.
It had been given to me - as an 'outright gift' - by a friend who had dropped by while I was out and left it standing upright in my mailbox on Saturday. There was no note attached and so I had to figure out which wonderful, thoughtful person it was who had given me such a wonderful gift.
Everyone who knows me knows that I love JFK and that is where I get many of my JFK memorabilia and books - as outright gifts from people who come across it in their daily lives and automatically think of me.
For example, that is where I got my PT 109 model - as an outright gift from my son:
Actually, it didn't take me long to figure out who it was who had dropped off the LP-record - this latest 'outright gift'- and it turned out I was right. The culprit had been caught! I phoned her and told her how appreciative I was and how I'd listened to it in its entirety and it didn't have even one scratch.
The album is actually a Canadian production and had some excerpts from press conferences and speeches that I'd never heard before. The first side ends with the Inaugural Address and the sound quality is the best I've ever heard - building to a crescendo for the ultimate "ASK NOT...." which sent shivers up my spine.
It's amazing that you were actually there that day - IN PERSON - to see and hear JFK. You're the first person I've ever met (albeit virtually) who has been there. It would be interesting to hear how the circumstance came about.
I wonder - you being the young age of 13 - if you mistook people's breath for smoke? It was such a cold day that we even saw JFK's breath!
All the best,
PS - It's all over the news today how the Solomon Islands were hit by a tsunami wave last night. I'll be writing an article explaining how the worst-hit island - Gizo - was the exact spot where JFK's PT 109 went down. See PT 109 HIT BY TSUNAMI
To Orwell Today,
From 1959-1964 my great uncle was a US Senator from California. So, growing up, I knew all of the California politicians and various of the US Senators. I attended the 1961 Inaugural with my grandmother.
You're probably correct about the "Smoke", it must have been the vapor from the mouths. It was very, very frigid. It had snowed all night before. If you are familiar with the District of Columbia, I stayed in the Potomac Plaza home of my grandmother. That is located in Foggy Bottom, across the street from the Watergate. The Watergate was not yet built at the time of the JFK Inauguration.
The Inaugural is something I will never forget, especially since the president did not finish his term.
I also attended President Johnson's inaugural in 1965.
I am enjoying reading many of the various interesting items on your website.
Thank you for filling in the details about how you came to be at JFK's Inaugural.
All the best,
~ an independent researcher monitoring local, national and international events ~