Giving a lift to the Senator

David and Mike
With former Alaska senator Mike Gravel at the Hillside Club

It’s not every day you have a United States Senator in your car.

The featured speaker at last night’s monthly Fireside Meeting at the Hillside Club was former Alaska senator Mike Gravel. I work nearby his home, so I volunteered to give him a ride to the Club. We had a very enjoyable chat on the drive over, and we arrived in Berkeley early enough for me to give Mike a quick architectural tour.

Gravel served two terms in the Senate from 1969-81, and is remembered for his attempts to end the draft and for reading the Pentagon Papers into the Congressional Record. There was a pretty good turnout for Mike’s talk, and he answered many questions both supportive and skeptical of his ideas. I fall into the skeptical camp, but if there’s any lesson to be learned from our polarized times, it’s that learning to be friends with those with whom you disagree is a great virtue.