Essay PreviewMore ↓
The son of Frank Rich Sr., whose family had been in the shoe business in Washington since the Civil War, and Helene Rich, a teacher, was born in 1949. Members of the family led seemingly ordinary lives in Somerset, Md. There, according to Rich, all the houses looked alike, dads went to work, moms stayed home and television perpetuated the myth that all families were happy. While he was in grade school, Rich's parents split up, making him the first kid on the block to bear the stigma of coming from "a broken home."
Both parents subsequently remarried, and, in a telling detail, neither Rich nor his younger sister, Polly, was invited to either parent's second wedding. Rich is venomous on the subject of his stepfather--a crude and violent man with a vicious temper--but acknowledges that thanks to his affluence the family went to the theater often.
The protagonist in Rich's life is his mother (described as a Judy Holliday, not physically but emotionally); her death was tragic. The driver of the car in which she was killed was Rich's much-loathed stepfather.
Rich, writes freely of having been a lousy athlete, an insomniac and a loner. What pleasures he had in childhood came from theater--listening to recordings of musicals ("South Pacific," "The Most Happy Fella" and, while in bed with measles, "Peter Pan") and reenacting shows in the miniature theaters he created out of shoe boxes from his father's shop. For lighting, a desk lamp was put into service; pillowcases became curtains. He saved playbills (even ones found in trash cans for shows he had not seen), analyzed album covers and memorized lyrics. For his third-grade talent show, Rich sang "You Gotta Have Heart." Educated in public schools, where he claims classes were undemanding, Rich was blessed with teachers, librarians and friends who abetted his passion for theater, for reading and for writing. At the age of 8, he published a neighborhood bulletin that announced the arrival of babies, puppies and new cars. He also wrote a "book" titled "A World All My Own," about a boy who lived in a big box.
How to Cite this Page
"Ghost Light." 123HelpMe.com. 13 Dec 2019
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- ... She was encircled by maybe ten creatures. tow of which were holding the chains pinning her to the tree. all of them were strange, deformed in some way or manner except for one. Carl assumed him to be the leader as he walked up behind Danielle. "Your power is broken milady - we have shut you out of your kingdom of shadows and now... i shall plant the last blow on your defeat" he walked up behind her his black clothes vanishing much as hers did before she was stripped and bound. The man had short black hair and broad shoulders.... [tags: ghost, light, rope, axe,voice]
2185 words (6.2 pages)
- With the recent technological advances, ghost hunters have been able to find more ghosts and search better than before. Embracing this new technology can provide us great insight into the world of the ghosts by showing us how strong they are, what kind of energy they use, and how they look like. Science has given ghost hunters the technology, now ghost hunters can apply it to their trade. People of science have this notion or idea to seem to think that science is superior to those that believe in ghost hunting.... [tags: Ghost, Paranormal, Camera, Science]
1019 words (2.9 pages)
- The Tale of the Banshee On a dark and stormy night it happened. Not too far in the recent past, two teenaged girls were out camping in the woods. There, they sat in their tent while exchanging frightening ghost stories by the flickering candle-light. What began as a normal, cool, summer’s night, took an eerie turn for the worse when, in the middle of one particularly terrifying tale, an ominous howl rang out too close for comfort and a thunderous crash was heard. As they scrambled to be near each other for warmth and security against the tingling feeling arising on the backs of their necks, and the fear of their impending doom, what jumped out at them was a horrifyingly great big...... [tags: Urban Legends Ghost Stories]
1080 words (3.1 pages)
- The Ghost’s Deception in Hamlet The Ghost in Hamlet cleared out the event that Hamlet was uncertain of. The spirit clarified the death of King Hamlet, and caused Hamlet to perform his evil deeds. The Ghost’s request to avenge him caused the death of Hamlet’s family, friends, and eventually himself; therefore, the spirit can be viewed as evil because it failed the four tests that was set by Lewes Lavater and the Church. Lewes Lavater describes how the church determines if a ghost is evil or good.... [tags: William Shakespeare Evil Ghost Deceit]
1605 words (4.6 pages)
- Prejudice is an issue that cannot be easily avoided in today's society. It has and always will have a huge impact on the discrimination that some people face based on religion, appearance, background, mental/physical disabilities and etc. In the novel Ghost Boy, written by Ian Lawrence, prejudice plays an important role in the society built within the pages and cover of the book. Harold Kline, the fourteen year old protagonist of the novel, faces many problems with the members of the society in which he lives based on his appearance because he is an albino.... [tags: Lawrence Ghost Boy Analysis Review]
1506 words (4.3 pages)
- College Ghost Lore If one were to take the beltway to I-270 north, about an hour north of Washington, DC one would arrive at a town called Emmitsburg, Maryland. Is the town haunted. I collected several stories from a senior in college who is from Emmitsburg. This senior is a white female. The stories I collected, many of which have to do with the small Catholic college indicate a rich ghost lore in the town. There are several stories that this woman told me concerning her hometown. The first is one that most people who live in the town know.... [tags: Ghost Stories Urban Legends]
970 words (2.8 pages)
- The Ghost Story of Haunted Roads The story of a haunted road in comes from a resident of the city. He is an Asian, male University sophomore. He told me the story in March at a very late hour. Among friends discussing plans to one day explore some supposedly haunted areas of the state, the storyteller spoke of a “rumor” he had heard from one of his college friends. The “late hour” previously mentioned is noteworthy since it affected the way the urban legend was told. There were four of us in a diner, eating at a time when most restaurants had been closed for hours already.... [tags: Ghost Stories Urban Legends]
1035 words (3 pages)
- 'What the heck was that?!?' is a very familiar phrase to many. Was it just the house settling. Maybe it was a friend playing a prank. Or could it possibly have been a ghost. The latter choice is normally ruled out fairly quickly. But for some, it is very plausible. To prove or disprove the possibility of an apparition, a surprisingly scientific and frequently detailed investigation is carried out. The "ghost hunt" originated in the 1800's. In these days, it was not a true ghost hunt, rather an entertaining seance, picture, or "show." Many people experimented with the invention of photography in this century.... [tags: Ghost Essays]
1195 words (3.4 pages)
- Kingsville Haunted House The teller is 24 years old, and works for the state department of education. Originally, he was from the Baltimore area where he attended an elementary Catholic school. He moved to Bell Air in second grade and grew up there. After his parents separated, he moved back to Baltimore to live with his grandparents, and has remained in Baltimore ever since. The sister he mentions in the story moved away to China years ago. A weekend or two ago, he, I, and a few other friends spent the evening in one of our favorite hang-out spots in Columbia, Pub Dog.... [tags: Ghost Stories Urban Legends]
1396 words (4 pages)
- Dirt Biker Ghosts in Maryland This story was heard from a friend of mine; a 20 year old, Caucasian, Irish-American male. He discovered this story when he first moved into his house. He heard this story from his newly acquired friends who were neighborhood children that had lived in the area since before he arrived, although he did not mention any specifics about the sources, such as names, how many there were, or how old they were, but just that they were friends. The teller, however, did remember where he heard this story, which was told while sitting right outside of his house, within eyesight of the woods mentioned in the story.... [tags: Urban Legends Ghost Stories]
1137 words (3.2 pages)
Throughout his teenage years, Rich's appearances at the National Theatre's box office were so frequent that the management hired him as a ticket taker. It was, he writes, "the one place that promised me surefire intoxication." He also saw shows at Arena Stage and on Broadway. Musicals, rather than straight plays, seem to have been his preference, although he liked "Sunrise at Campobello," John Gielgud and Ralph Richardson in "School for Scandal" and "A Raisin in the Sun," which was something of an eye-opener for the young man from this still-segregated city.
Ghost Light is at its best when tracing the roots of Rich's obsession with theater but sheds little light on the Washington of his youth. It was, he repeats, a dull place. The family's move to Cleveland Park put him closer to, but not into the heart of, the Jewish mercantile aristocracy who lived in "Hanukah Heights" and whose teenagers' social lives centered around rec rooms and Ritz crackers. All he offers about his bar mitzvah at Temple Israel is that the ark was designed by theater artist Boris Aronson, about whom he later wrote a book. After taking tickets at the National Theatre and operating a paper route, Rich went on to Harvard, which is where Ghost Light ends.