What on Earth Have I Done?: Stories, Observations, and Affirmations
"My house in Seattle is across the street from an elementary school. A high fence blocks my view, but I’m close enough to overhear conversations. One morning…I heard a car door opened, then slammed shut…a woman’s voice came blasting over the fence: "BILLY…WHAT…ON…EARTH…HAVE…YOU…DONE?.,."My own mother asked me the same question. Often. And I, in my turn asked my own children, who, no doubt have followed the same line of inquiry with their kids…" Robert Fulghum’s new book begins with a question we’ve all asked ourselves: "What on Earth have I done?" As Fulghum finds out, the answer is never easy and, almost always, surprising. For the last couple of years, Fulghum has been traveling the world – from Seattle to the Moab Desert to Crete – looking for a few fellow travelers interested in thinking along with him as he delights in the unexpected: trick-or-treating with your grandchildren dressed like a large rabbit, pots of daffodils blooming in mid-November, a view of the earth from outer space, the mysterious night sounds of the desert, every man’s trip to a department store to buy socks, the raucous all-night long feast that is Easter in Greece, the trials and tribulations of plumbing problems and the friendship one can strike up with someone who doesn’t share the same language." What on Earth Have I Done?" is an armchair tour of everyday life as seen by Robert Fulghum, one of America’s great essayists, a man who has two feet planted firmly on the earth, one eye on the heavens and, at times, a tongue planted firmly in his cheek. Fulghum writes to his fellow travelers, with a sometimes light heart, about the deep and vexing mysteries of being alive and says, "This ismy way of bringing the small boat of my life within speaking distance of yours. Hello…"