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From Shoes to Lanyards

It was a moment to hear from our modern day philosophers -- in a remarkable setting.  Shoes, lanyards, love, writing, world problems, politicians, and HIV all took stage in a magical world of words. A room at the East Wing of the White House was set with small round table each with six simple, but cushy chairs--you know the ones with pillows on the seat so that there are no uncomfortable distractions.  The 15 or so tables, like the room, were full of people brimming with quiet anticipation.  The small stage held a podium, microphones, a few music stands, and a beautiful brown baby grand piano with what looked like Greek or Roman figures; and the carved front leg of a bald eagle!

President Obama

Everything fit just right, like our Customers in their seats--with just enough space for everyone awaiting a good performance.  Unlike our flights though, there was no announcement to turn off anything with an on/off switch.  Surprisingly, in the age of iPhones, iPads, and Blackberries, not one unit rang, beeped, or buzzed during this performance. The room with long gold drapes and simple, but elegant chandelier lighting opened for "An Evening of Poetry".  If only for a few brief moments, poets' words transformed daily distractions and mundane memories into intro- and extro-pections to contemplate our spiritual selves! (Our Southwest Airlines poets are more funny with down to earth humor.  Plus, I doubt we'll see the President and First Lady on a flight any time soon!) The President and First Lady stayed for the entire performance, to hear words set to rhythm, raps and music. There was no doubt that it was an exciting evening to hear creative minds young and older speak on complex and humorous issues.  I can only be grateful to have had this marvelous lifetime experience--to attend "An Evening of Poetry" at the White House (and to work for Southwest Airlines).