Dec. 30th, 2016

 When I look back at my twenties now, I can see that they were all leading somewhere. As a story, they make sense. But at the time, as Hannah Horvath says, it didn’t feel like very much was happening. Most things felt haphazard, random, peripheral. I was making decisions, sometimes, without realizing it. Other times, they hit me square in the face, like that bus. Warning: this is the part where I quote Joan Didion. “That was the year, my twenty-eighth,” she wrote in “Goodbye to All That,” the urtext of twenties self-reflection, “when I was discovering that not all of the promises would be kept, that some things are in fact irrevocable and that it had counted after all, every evasion and every procrastination, every mistake, every word, all of it.” The twenties “count,” though they don’t always feel that way. You sleep through a law exam, cross the street listening to Jacques Brel, and it counts. It’s only when they’re over that you can see the shape of things.
 
April 28, 2016
 
Meryl Streep’s Twenties, and My Own
 
By Michael Schulman
 Her success in the White House has had as much to do with her comfort with herself as with what might be her central precept: never believe that there is a room you have no right to walk into. It’s a message that she has delivered in speeches at historically black colleges and in her mentorship of girls. It has also come across in her work, with Jill Biden, to support military families. As the stages got bigger, Obama’s oratory became more dominant and yet, at the same time, more intimate. In one of her enduring speeches, given at the 2012 Democratic National Convention, she revisited her fears that the Presidency would change her husband. What she had realized, she said, was that power doesn’t change who you are—“it reveals who you are.”
 
In her case, it revealed, by way of “Carpool Karaoke,” what it’s like to drive around with a First Lady singing “Get Ur Freak On.” Her cool seems effortless, though her control of it is precise. Her iconoclasm gains strength from its fusion with irreproachability. She has been cheerfully scrupulous about White House traditions and rituals, including such niceties as designing what will be known as the Obama China.
 
MICHELLE OBAMA AND US
 
The tenure of a First Lady who leaves the White House as one of the most popular political figures in recent memory.
 
By Amy Davidson

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