I adore Kalman's illustrations and admire the fact that she is both a writer and an artist. This semester one of my assignments for my art and design students was to listen and write a response to Kalman's OnBeing interview with Krista Tippett from last year. The interview is titled, "The Normal, Daily Things We Fall in Love With."
To my delight, this very topic came up in the panel when Sow asked Gillibrand and Kalman: "During these unimaginable times, what gives you hope when you wake up in the morning?" Gillibrand offered a sweet response regarding her family. Kalman paused for a moment and said (I paraphrase): "I really love having a cup of coffee. Then I read the obits, which will make anyone thankful and hopeful for their life, I think. And then—then!—I take a walk through Central Park. Can you imagine, walking through a beautiful park every morning? And then I take a bus ride down 5th Avenue. How wonderful!"
She wasn't being sarcastic: these are aspects of her life that bring her hope. Even when Trump is still in office; even while California is burning; even while women still don't have equal pay and millions of people are still subject to brutal racism and institutional injustice.
Coffee, obituaries, Central Park, and bus rides.