YAM Notes: May/June 2013

By Rich Banbury

Major Modifications: There have been some substantial changes in the Criminal Justice symposium, which was relocated from a Waterford resort to the Yale campus. (By now, this is more likely an item of history than a look into the future.) The revamped schedule incorporates May 8th through May 10th, a change from the earlier itinerary of May 5th to May 9th. Many of the original presentations have been maintained, starting with a lecture by Professor Herman Goldstein on the morning of Wednesday, May 8th. Dr. Goldstein is a national consultant on community policing, although the title of his influential book is Problem-Oriented Policing. Several panels of experienced class experts, as originally planned, will have presented various perspectives on important platforms pertaining to crime and punishment. The venue for these events was changed to the Golden Center, affiliated with St. Thomas More Chapel on Park Street. That major shift of plans was due to the fact that the Water’s Edge in Westbrook did not offer the flexibility that had been anticipated, and there were also serious concerns regarding attendance.

The location for Crimes of Design will be no mystery to the literate denizens of St. Louis. Peter Green’s latest Patrick MacKenna mystery uses the dams, locks, and waterways as the backdrop for this noir novel. A retired architect, who worked closely with the Corps of Engineers on many wet projects, Pete has penned this energetic thriller. It has been particularly popular with those living in the area of the action. Another Patrick MacKenna mystery, Fatal Designs, is also populated by a cast of characters who have little respect for social norms.

Scholars of the Levant will recognize the name of Tawfiq al-Suwaydi, a towering Iraqi figure during the twentieth century (1892-1968), whose My Memoirs: Half a Century of the History of Iraq and the Arab Cause, provides the reader with powerful insights about the diplomatic, political and geostrategic issues of the Middle East. The author has the rare distinction of having served as ambassador to both the League of Nations and the United Nations. Recently translated by Nancy Roberts, the introduction by Antony Sullivan has achieved critical acclaim that matches the al-Suwaydi tome itself. It’s unusual to have the introduction reviewed, but Tony’s expertise in the subject is worthy of that distinction. One critic makes reference to Tony’s “lively, well-informed, and thoughtful introduction,” while another, Joshua Mitchell of Georgetown, referred to it as masterful.

There are so many ways to land in Havana these days. Tom Miller can vouch for the hospitality of Cuban hosts, having recently organized and participated in yet another excursion to Hemingway’s favorite island. Of course it is necessary to be with a group which has some particular agenda of mutual interests or cross-cultural connections. Tom reports that cooking and eating is a popular subject, as well as environmental issues and the visual arts. Also on their Cuba agenda, Tom and Nhu have been strongly involved with a clean water project in Palma Soriano, Berkeley’s sister city.

Directed by Jessica Robinson, The Man on the Fifth Floor tells the life story of classical composer Gerald Busby. This documentary film includes the highs and lows, as seen from the fifth floor of the fabled Chelsea Hotel in Manhattan, which Gerald has called home for these many years.

The Yale hockey team continues to be competitive at the highest levels, and was ranked generally in the top 10 during the 2012-13 season. It’s not just young jocks who get to skate with sticks on the ice at Ingalls Rink. In the annual alumni game, in which 29 goals were scored, Jim Trowbridge was the most experienced of all the pucksters. I’m not sure if any goalies came back for this one, but clearly none from the class of ’60.

Donald Dell is well known as the godfather of American professional tennis, having established the Association of Tennis Professionals, along with Jack Kramer and Cliff Drysdale, in 1972. Don, with a law degree from Virginia, is also recognized as a pioneer in the creation of modern sports agencies, representing professional athletes across a spectrum of sports. These accomplishments may not have occurred without the tragic assassination of Robert Kennedy in 1968. Don was an advance man for Senator Kennedy in his presidential campaign, as well as teaching him the game of tennis. At that time, Don had a strong inclination to pursue a life of public service. That ambition was also fueled by Don’s association with Sargent Schriver while he was running the Peace Corps and subsequently the Office of Economic Opportunity, which was responsible for administering Lyndon Johnson’s War on Poverty. In 1967 and 1968, Don traveled the country and world in high company, meeting with world leaders, including President Johnson. However, after the assassination, Schriver encouraged Don to accept an offer as Captain of the Davis Cup Team, which went undefeated under his two-year tutelage.

See you in Toronto! September 30th – October 4th. Be there. Stayoung.