The Corner

I Have Returned

I had a really fine time at UMN. CFact — a campus conservative environmental group — was a fine host. My talk seemed well received. People laughed at the appropriate spots (at Ithaca earlier this month when I gave a talk about diversity I felt like I should stop every now and then and say “these are the jokes people”) and asked a lot of thoughtful questions. What was particularly interesting was that while the relatively smallish room was packed, NRO readers and folks who saw a mention on Powerline outnumbered students by — I’d guess — five to one. I shudder to imagine what the room would have been like if only students attended.

I also shudder to think what I will do to the kid from CFact who was supposed to drive me to the airport this morning but slept through his alarm leaving me stranded — should I ever encounter him again.

A major highpoint was meeting and having beers with James Lileks who joined a bunch of students and NRO readers at some bar — I believe called Big 10. We cornerd a few tables and had a fine time talking all things blogish, conservative, family life and whatnot. Lileks is not only a very, very nice and smart guy, but I can also report he’s literally half the man I am.

Update I now see that Lileks has already — and very kindly — recounted the events of last night. He leaves out that he was as greeted like Aragorn at the Prancing Pony Inn at the Big Ten. But again, very good dude.

Jonah Goldberg, a senior editor of National Review and the author of Suicide of the West, holds the Asness Chair in Applied Liberty at the American Enterprise Institute.

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