Thursday, February 01, 2007

R.I.P. Molly Ivins

I'm going to miss Molly Ivins, one of the strongest, funniest, and most perceptive voices in political journalism. I had the pleasure of hearing her speak twice and the honor of meeting her once. She was proud of being called a "liberal" even during the years--and in a state, Texas--that didn't value the liberal point of view much of the time.

When we met in Cambridge at the 2002 Nieman Conference on Narrative Journalism, I told her that I'd first heard her in Lubbock, Texas, where my husband was teaching college. She gently put her hand on my shoulder, smiled, and said in her drawl, "Oh, honey! You survived that! That's so wonderful!"

By the time I met her, the once-dark hair was white, a change that occurred during her battle with breast cancer. She was still funny, still sarcastic--yet not cruel--still smart, smart, smart.

Like her friend and fellow liberal, former Texas governor Ann Richards, Molly Ivins died too young. The cancer may have finally won, but she didn't stop writing till the very end--a voice too feisty to be forgotten.

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