I have always had this secret fantasy of being a Bourne girl or Bond girl, and I've never even gotten called in on one of those roles.
At MIT, I had the good fortune for seven years to teach network theory, which is basic to many disciplines, to one-third of the undergraduate student body. It was an experiment to see how high we could bring their level of understanding, and it exceeded all of my expectations.
I lived in a world where social arrangements were taken for granted and assumed to be timeless. A child's obligation was to learn these usages, not to question them. The complexities of racial deportment were of a piece with learning manners and etiquette more generally.
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