"The sun burnt every day. It burnt Time. The world rushed in a circle and turned on its axis and time was busy burning the years and the people anyway, without any help from him. So if he burnt things with the firemen and the sun burnt Time, that meant that everything burnt!"
- Ray Bradbury, Fahrenheit 451, Part 3
In 2003 I was living in Chicago and for some reason someone forwarded information from the Columbia College Chicago (CCC) alumni mailing list announcing a small gathering with CCC professor and Ray Bradbury biographer Sam Weller
at a bookstore in downtown LA.
I called the Columbia College people, told them I was not alumni - managed to reserve a seat at the event, cashed out all my flight miles and flew to LA on two days notice. There were only about 30 people gathered in this small space downtown where Bradbury spoke for over two hours. Bradbury was, to date, the most incredible public speaker I've ever heard in person. My friend Camran and I were so impressed with him we renamed him Ray "Rad"bury. At the time Bradbury was 83 and had suffered a minor stroke - he was loaded with energy when he spoke but left the event exhausted on his walker:
I was fortunate enough to crib a photo op with the master - I'm not a big photo op guy, but sometimes these opportunities give you a magical memory of life's strange encounters.
I share this with you because during this move I was completely oblivious to the PR blitz on the new Fahrenheit 451
graphic novel. Comic connoisseur and founder of the Comics International Ning Marek Bennett
made a post about the NPR piece after reading this forum post
"Reimagining 'Fahrenheit 451' As A Graphic Novel"
Beyond the NPR piece I read about the graphic novel in USA Today
"Graphic novel of 'Fahrenheit 451' sparks Bradbury's approval"
and in the Chicago Tribune
"Confessions of a comics fan: My secret shame"
Then when I was pulling these articles I even came across this interesting blog linking Amazon to Fahrenheit 451
"Is Amazon pulling a 'Fahrenheit 451' by banning books from list?"
Thankfully, it sounds like "Rad"bury is alive, kicking and still talking talking talking - I love his completely expected enthusiasm for Buck Rogers and comics in general. The dude remains "totally radical."
If you have any other cool Fahrenheit
teaching resources to share please add them to Sydney's discussion forum post