Happy Inauguration Day!

Happy Inauguration Day!

This is a very exciting time to be an American. I feel a bit as if the sun is coming out again after a long, dark storm. With baseball-size hail. And lengthy power outages.

I wanted to share a story I came across recently. It illustrates one of the reasons I love Barack Obama.

A class of second-graders in Connecticut had a Flat Stanley Writing Project. For those of you who haven’t met Flat Stanley, he’s squashed flat by a falling bulletin board. You’d think this would be a disadvantage, but it’s not. For instance, his parents can put him in a large envelope and mail him for a visit to his friends in California.


For the project, these Connecticut students made paper Flat Stanleys and began a journal with him for a few days. Then Flat Stanley and the journal were sent to someone famous to continue his journey, with the request that they add a bit to the journal, then send everything back to the original sender. Students plot his travels on maps and share the contents of the journal.

Letters were sent to Yankee third basemen Alex Rodriguez, Nancy Pelosi, Mark Spitz and John McCain. Did they write back? Nope, not a word.

Three boys wrote letters to Barack Obama who was the only person to respond.


(Admit it … that photo made you grin like an idiot, didn’t it? How cute are THEY?!)

Loretta Waldman of The Hartford Courant reports:

Obama’s three-page letter to Aron described Flat Stanley’s visit with him and his staff in Washington, D.C. It chronicled their busy day together, which included coffee with constituents, a Senate committee meeting and a trip to the gym. It also had historical facts about the U.S. Capitol, details of Obama’s job and a confession from Obama.

“Sometimes I get a little nervous before talking in front of a crowd, but Flat Stanley helped me practice the speech,” Obama wrote. “He made me recite it in front of him and then even gave me some advice so the speech would go smoothly. Flat Stanley is really a great coach.”

Are you proud that’s the kind of guy we have as President?

0 thoughts on “Happy Inauguration Day!

  1. Mary Pleiss

    I’d read that story, right around the election, and it’s so awesome. Even if it was his staff, and not President(!) Obama himself who responded, it says a lot about the people he has advising him that they would do this.

    I’m so proud of my country, and of my president, and that I worked on his campaign, and that we have a leader who’s a writer at heart, who knows what to do with words. It’s not an end, it’s a beginning, and I’m ready to get to work.

  2. jimsmuse

    I ran across the same article a few months ago, when a few far-flung Word Press bloggers exchanged copies of our flat “selves” via email and shared the results online. I was extremely proud to be in such excellent “flat” company — the fact that of the many famous people sent Flat Stanleys Obama was the only one to answer I found very telling. As the above commenter mentioned, it doesn’t really matter who exactly wrote the letter, the important thing is that the message got through to these kids that Barack Obama actually cares about them, (and has a pretty good sense of humor, too!)

    1. beckycc

      You two may be right about some staffer writing Obama’s Flat Stanley letter, but I’m going to keep believing that he wrote it himself. It’s not out of the realm of possibility, after all. I can absolutely see him involving his own children in the process, or even them forcing him to play along. Anyone with young children must have a sense of whimsy hovering around him, and the Flat Stanley project just begs for attention.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.