Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Another Great Read

I know I’m about a year behind the rest of the planet, but I just read The Last Lecture yesterday. It has to be one of the most heart-wrenching books I have ever read! So I’ve been an emotional wreck for about 36 hours now and I got no sleep last night. My eyes are bloodshot and puffy and every time I look at my kids or glimpse the book jacket I burst in to tears. As a matter of fact I had to blog about it quickly so that I could try to stop thinking about it and move on with my life. That said, I completely recommend it.

If you are one of the other 3 people living that hasn’t heard of the book, let me explain. Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburg, PA has a standard lecture series where they ask professors to give a lecture as if they knew they were dying and it would be their last one. The unique thing about Dr.Randy Pausch’s (professor of Computer Sciences) lecture is that it really was his last one.

At the time he gave the lecture he had been told he had 3 to 6 months before the pancreatic cancer that he had been fighting for a year would take his life. He was 47 years old and knew that he would be leaving behind a wife and 3 young children that probably wouldn’t remember him. Written for his children, The Last Lecture covers the same material as the actual lecture and gives a little more background into the life of Dr. Pausch. He is an unbelievably upbeat and optimistic guy and a tremendous teacher. The book (which sold over 2 million copies, while Pausch really only wanted the first three) is as hilarious as it is unbearably sad.

Dr. Pausch’s lecture is entitled “Achieving Your Childhood Dreams” and in it he reveals his childhood dreams and how he was able to achieve all of them(working at Disney, being Captain Kirk, experiencing zero gravity, etc)….well, except for that NFL thing. He praises his parents and confesses his undying love for his wife and children.

“Children need to know that their parents love them. You don’t have to be alive to give them that.”

Just reading about Dr. Pausch’s life is enough to inspire greatness, but reading about his death (as he says, “Turns out dying is a great career booster.”) inspires hope and a real look at what is truly important in our lives.

No one should die without reading this book!!

You can also check out Randy Pausch’s website to watch the live lecture or for a look at his blog (be sure to read the e-mail from JJ Abrams), his obituary, a lost chapter of the book, and more information about fighting pancreatic cancer.

1 comment:

fblife said...

I know! I read this book this summer and LOVED IT!