I was first aware of Randy Pausch when Katie Couric announced his death on the evening news on July 25, 2008. I guess by that time the youtube film of his last lecture had made him famous, but I wasn't in tune to that as much as others & so had never heard of him. After seeing the news story, Dog went online & listened to his lecture. He told me it was great & I needed to watch it, but there's a lot I need to do that I don't get around to & that was one of them.
Then a few weeks later, the interview he did with Diane Sawyer aired & we watched it together. There were excerpts from his lecture included, but I still wasn't convinced. I guess I just get tired of having people held up as the ideal, either in the way they live their lives or how they die, & feeling like a very selfish, sub-human creature afterwards because I get upset about not getting what I want. I feel sometimes that's the set up the media gives us so we'll buy more stuff & try to become perfect.
But this Christmas, a friend of mine from work that I don't get to see very much anymore gave me the book. First Dog read it, then Dick read it. Then I finally gave in.
Here's the thing that's great--never does he make out that he's got the answers to all life's problems. The book is for his kids. It's all the things he wants them to know, that he wasn't going to be able to tell them himself. It's not for anyone else. We can read it, of course, but he didn't write it for us. And that's the beauty of the whole thing.