The painting here is by the Shanghai artist Shi Mo (ʯī), with whom we struck up an acquaintance around this time.
These were the years when Nellie settled in to being a teenager, while Danny advanced his football career and otherwise did as little as he could get away with.
Here are some photographs from these years. Clicking on a picture brings up a bigger version.
|———— 2007 ————|
|Here I am shooting a friend's AK-47 at a range in New Jersey in June 2007. Not very good gun discipline here. With my eye that close to the scope I should be just sighting up, unless I want to have my eye punched out; but if I'm just sighting up, why is my finger off the trigger guard? Hmm. My excuse is, I am not used to scopes.|
|———— 2008 ————|
|The only known picture of me declaiming. This was at "Mollywood," the annual summer talent show put on by our neighbors Kerry and Helen Prep and their daughter Molly. The date is August 9, 2008|
|In August 2008 Nellie spent a few days in England, mainly staying with my niece Tessa in London. Here is Nellie with Tessa's children. Left to right: Wolfgang, Nellie, Kesta, Tully, Caden.|
|Kesta took Nellie to one of those horror museums the English love.|
|Nellie with Tessa's kids again, in the maze at Hever Castle.|
|My sister Judith took Nellie and Kesta to visit Aunt Muriel and Uncle Fred.|
|We spent part of Labor Day weekend 2008 with our friends Peter (right) and Sally (left) Pettus in Sharon, Connecticut.|
|Here is the complete weekend party, minus JD (I was taking the picture).
Standing: Rosie, the Kimballs (Alexandra holding Elizabeth, Roger), Danny.
Below: James Kimball, Nellie, Peter & Sally, the Yezzis (Sarah, David, the twin boys — don't ask me which is which — and Susanna hiding behind stuffed toy).
|Danny's last season playing football with the Huntington Bulldogs.|
|September 14, 2008 we spent at Peter Fekula's house in Glen Head, Long Island. Here I am in the garden with Wally Fekula.|
|———— 2009 ————|
|Celebrating New Year's at home with visiting friends Brian & Sherri Meagher. Me holding the camera here, I guess …|
|… and Sherri holding it here.|
|One lovely clear day in March 2009 I went pheasant shooting with three pals out by Reading, Pa. Here I am with one of our victims. Yeah, I know the hat looks stupid. It's regulation, though.|
|Here's the whole shooting party, the ghost of James Mason hovering overhead somewhere. Left to right: Vin, Tom, JD, Randy. All thanks to Tom for organizing this.|
|Taken at the Sly Fox Ukrainian bar/restaurant in Manhattan, with a crowd of New Criterion-ites, April 28, 2009.|
|Taken at a media retreat in Osterville, Cape Cod, June 30, 2009. The retreat was organized by the Murray Weidenbaum Center of Washington University in St. Louis. The photographer, Russell Roberts, caught me smiling. When you get a look at those teeth, you can understand why I try to avoid this happening.|
|My greatniece Kesta ("Kezzie") McLeish (daughter of my niece Tessa) came to stay with us for two weeks in July. I think the high points for her were the trips she and Nellie took into New York City, where this picture was taken on July 13.|
|2009 family vacation in Hawaii, August 24 to September 4. What's the point of going to Hawaii if you don't buy an Aloha! shirt? This was the most garish, tasteless one I could find: but when I boasted of this online, I was trumped by several readers with shirts far gaudier.|
|I had to call on Pearl Harbor to see the Arizona memorial. Friends in New York had told me this is a bit of a disappointment, with not much to see. ("Just blobs of oil coming up …") I don't agree at all. I found the whole thing very moving, and a surprisng amount of the Arizona visible from the memorial bridge.|
|September 15, 2009 we attended a fashion show, a benefit for the Russian Children's Welfare Society. Here is Nellie with the guest of honor: Sasha Pivovarova, Russia's top model, a lady as pleasant and charming as she is beautiful.|
|Same event: Rosie and Nellie with Wally Fekula.|
|In full thunder, at the annual bash of the H.L. Mencken Club, October 30 to November 1, 2009.|
|Same event, with Pat Buchanan …|
|… Steve Sailer …|
|… Mark Hackard, Tom Piatak, Richard Spencer, & Kevin DeAnna.|
|It's my personal custom to take a couple of days off at Christmastime to do a jigsaw puzzle. Since I wrote about this for National Review, kind readers have been sending me jigsaw puzzles. Here I am with a 3,000-piece behemoth completed over Christmas 2009. (It's actually this one.)|
|———— 2010 ————|
|March 10, 2010: A friend at NYMEX, the New York Mercantile Exchange (now under a different official name, but still commonly called NYMEX) invited Nellie and me for a tour of the place. It was fascinating: I wrote a brief account for the group blog at National Review Online. The biggest thrill was when we first walked in: The guys had put my name up on the big board.|
|Same event: Here we are with one of the floor traders, Mike Caponiti. Everybody was wonderfully hospitable. Under terrific pressure all day long, with every minute counting on the balance sheet, they none the less took time out to greet us and explain how the system worked. What a great crowd!|
|Same event: After our visit to the floor, our host showed us the members' lounge, dining room, and bar, with beautiful views out across the Hudson and downtown. What a place to work! I forgot to ask if they had any openings for burned-out old COBOL programmers …|
|Rosie with two of her classmates, who came to visit us in Huntington, April 14, 2010. Left to right: Milton Yu (Yu
Jingming), Rosie, Robert Stone (Shi Jiayu).
Milton is fifth from the left, sitting next to me, in this 1983 picture. Robert is third from left in this picture from the same year. (Rosie is fourth from right in the back row.)
|Robert Stone in our sunroom on that same occasion.|
|Milton Yu, Me, Toby, and Robert Stone.|
|Me standing on the roof of the treehouse. (Picture taken by Milton.)|
|Danny shooting skeet, May 1st 2010. Here is some action video.|
|Nellie, same occasion, action video here.|
|An exhibit by Danny at Huntington High School art show.|
|As part of the Fleet Week celebrations, Danny and I took a tour of the amphibious assault ship (sort of a mini-carrier) U.S.S. Iwo Jima. Here are Danny, myself, a member of the ship's crew who was our guide, and U.S.M.C. Staff Sergeant (Ret.) David Karnes, who very kindly arranged the tour for us.|
|Same event. Here I am sitting in the captain's chair on the bridge of Iwo Jima trying to look captainly. I guess a uniform would have helped.|
|June 30, 2010 we attended a Mess Night held by the New York City Marine Corps Council, which does good work in support of the U.S. Marine Corps, wounded soldiers, etc. The event was at the New York Athletic Club, overlooking Central Park.|
|Same event: very rare footage of Danny in a suit and tie.|
|Danny at the range, July 31, 2010, firing the AR-15.|
|National Review post-election cruise. November 14-21, 2010. We cruised the western Caribbean. Here are Mr. & Mrs. on Half Moon Cay, an island leased by the cruise line from the government of the Bahamas.|
|Same place, same day: Rosie on horseback.|
|More from the cruise. On two of the nights we were required to dress formally for dinner. I did my best; the Missus did much better.|
|Rosie, same evening.|
|Still cruising. One of our panel discussions was attended by a young artist named Gabriel Gigliotti, who came armed with an iPad and some interesting art software. He rendered this portrait of me on stage. Gotta get one of those iPads.|
|James Buckley had a new book out in December 2010. Friends & neighbors up in Sharon, Connecticut, where James lives, held a private book party for him at the home of Peter & Sally Pettus. Here I am in the Pettus living-room talking to Michael Walsh (who writes for National Review Online and publishes books under the name "David Kahane.")|
|In mid-December a large hole suddenly appeared in our back yard. It was an ancient cesspool we had not known about. I got ten yards of dirt from a local contractor, had it dumped in the driveway December 23rd. More pictures here (where you can see part of the dirt pile beyond the fence), here, and here.|
|Danny and I spent Christmas Eve with shovels and wheelbarrows.
This picture taken on Christmas Day.
Come Spring I'll get a yard of topsoil to finish off.
|———— 2011 ————|
|Some scenes from the 2011 Petroushka Ball, held at the Waldorf-Astoria on February 11, 2011. Here is Rosie with some Russian girls.|
|More Petroushka: Mrs & Mr.|
|More Petroushka: Rosie|
|More Petroushka: There were two ballrooms with two bands: a stately Lester Lanin for the older crowd, and this funky Russian setup for us young bloods. First time I ever saw a bass balalaika — the thing is about eight feet wide. To fully savor these guys, you really needed to have a skinfull … which, by around midnight, we all did. Some wild dancing here.|
|More Petroushka: Rosie with the ineffable Wally Fekula.|
|A day out at Wing Pointe shooting sporting clays. Danny scored second among the eight of us.|
|I was invited to speak at the 2011 annual meeting of Prof. Hans-Hermann Hoppe's Property and Freedom Society in Bodrum, Turkey, May 26-30. We had great fun and I met many old friends. In the group photograph here I am in the second row, slightly right of center, wearing a yellow shirt. Directly in front of me (blue shirt & name tag) is Paul Gottfried. Prof. Hoppe and his wife are at front row center, to the left of Paul (as you look at the picture). Just left of Prof. Hoppe in the second row (face partly obscured, dark blue shirt & light blue jacket) is the historian and Turcologist Norman Stone. At far right of the picture is Peter Brimelow holding his infant daughter Felicity; Lydia Brimelow is next to them. Equidistant between me and Lydia in that second row is John O'Sullivan, former editor of (and still writer for) National Review. At far left on the fourth row (glasses, dark jacket, wife's hand on shoulder) is Tony Daniels (a/k/a "Theodore Dalrymple") …|
|Giving my address at the Property and Freedom Society bash.|
|Mr. & Mrs. on their 25th wedding anniversary, August 6th 2011. This is at Cafe Buenos Aires, an Argentinian restaurant in
Huntington, the photograph taken by a kind waitress. (Argentine … Silver Wedding … geddit?)
Going for the Gold? You bet. The first 25 years, I've heard, are the hardest.
Here's where it started.
|The National Review Caribbean cruise was November 12th to 19th this year. We flew down on the 9th to spend a few days in Orlando with dear friends Boris Zeldovich and his wife Nadia Baranova before embarking. Boris teaches Physics at the University of Central Florida. His father was the eminent Soviet physicist and cosmologist Yakov Zeldovich (1914-87), subject of this memorial volume, and author of, among much else, this very useful handbook.|
|On the beach at Half Moon Quay, our cruise ship in the background (on the left).|
|Rosie, same day, same beach.|
|Rosie, different day, ziplining through the jungle in Puerto Rico.|
|We spent the first week of December (actually November 29th to December 6th) in Moscow. The Russian magazine
("Around the World"), the Russian equivalent of our own National Geographic, was celebrating its 150th anniversary, and they held a
commemorative "Festival of Ideas" in Moscow. Some foreign pop-science writers, myself among them, were invited to give addresses.
Here are Mr. and Mrs. at our Moscow hotel shortly after arrival.
|With Rosie in front of the main festival hall.|
|And here I am in lecture mode at the Festival. The entire lecture can be seen here, though unfortunately with Russian voice-over.|
|Relaxing at Taras Bulba restaurant on Petrovka Street in central Moscow. The gent in the portrait is Nikolai Gogol (1809-52), famous Russian writer (or Ukrainian if you like — I'm not going anywhere near that), who wrote the story from which the restaurant was named. The story was made into a 1962 movie with Yul Brynner and Tony Curtis, which I dimly remember as being not bad.|
|I went to Gogol's house on Nikitsky Boulevard, too. Unfortunately it was closed, but I did get a picture with the monument outside.|
|I was honored to be asked to give a talk at the Lectorium of the Polytechnic Museum, on a stage that has borne many great names in modern Russian literature and science. Trying to get into the high-culture spirit of the thing, I sang a couple of verses of the Riemann Hypothesis song to balalaika accompaniment. I venture to speculate that this may be a world first. The accompanist's name was Ivan. Thanks, Ivan.|
|The Polytechnic Museum has some fine stained-glass displays, not necessarily updated to reflect political changes.|
|I was finally able to meet my translator, Alexei Semikhatov.|
|Our minder and interpreter for the trip was the very capable and efficient Liza Zoloto, at right in this picture.
Большое спасибо, Liza.
(And check out that lymphadenopathy! Three months later I was in chemotherapy.)
|Nobody's going to believe you went to Moscow unless you have a picture taken in front of St. Basil's Cathedral.|
|I even copped an interview with Izvestia correspondent Liza Novikova: December 6, 2011 issue, "Kul'tura" section.|
|On Christmas Eve, 2011 a reader emailed in with this: "Dear John — Recently our family acquired a golden retriever that
somebody had dumped. I decided to name him Derbyshire. We call him Derb for short … Why am I telling you this? Because I thought you would like to
Thank you, Sir. I'm very glad indeed to know, and flattered to have such a beautiful creature named after me. (I hope it's after me, not the chicken, the goiter, the county, or the wreck.)