Saturday, November 22, 2008

The Last Lecture

I had read about Randy Pausch quite a while ago; he was a Carnegie Mellon professor who found out he was dying of pancreatic cancer. Apparently it's common in academia to give something called a "last lecture," in which professors review their lives and impart some wisdom that they've learned.

This last lecture was different in that it actually would be from the point of view of someone who had only a short time to live. I've been on the waiting list at my library for a LONG time (sadly I didn't start actually reading the book until I realized it was already overdue) and was surprised by this book. I was expecting something rather maudlin, and instead it was interesting, funny, and inspiring. Obviously, the subject matter being what it is, there were parts that were sad, but the overall tone of the book was one of optimism and humor. This man lived the heck out of his life, accomplished dreams, and loved his family.

There's a You Tube video of the actual lecture, but I enjoyed the book more. I liked being able to read the chapters in my own time and give them some thought. It was a short read, and divided up into small chapters (perfect for my time schedule these days). Randy Pausch died on July 25th of this year from pancreatic cancer, and judging from the way he lived his life, I'm sure he is missed by many.

1 comment:

grmybmy said...

One doesn't normally consider one's own demise, and there is a certain fascination listening to someone who has been given an acutal death date, to see what they think about the whole thing. If one has lived well, I don't think one minds the leaving of life, even if it is untimely. Choose wisely and well, while you have the choice. Love, Grmybmy