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Robert Fulghum's new book begins with a question we've all asked ourselves: "What on Earth have I done?" As Fulghum finds out, the answer is never easy and, almost always, surprising. For the last couple of years, Fulghum has been traveling the world - from Seattle to the Moab Desert to Crete - looking for a few fellow travelers interested in thinking along with him as he delights in the unexpected: trick-or-treating with your grandchildren dressed like a large rabbit, pots of daffodils blooming in mid-November, a view of the earth from outer space, the mysterious night sounds of the desert, every man's trip to a department store to buy socks, the raucous all-night long feast that is Easter in Greece, the trials and tribulations of plumbing problems and the friendship one can strike up with someone who doesn't share the same language. What on Earth Have I Done? is an armchair tour of everyday life as seen by Robert Fulghum, one of America's great essayists, a man who has two feet planted firmly on the earth, one eye on the heavens and, at times, a tongue planted firmly in his cheek. Fulghum writes to his fellow travelers, with a sometimes light heart, about the deep and vexing mysteries of being alive and says, "This is my way of bringing the small boat of my life within speaking distance of yours. Hello..."
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ROBERT FULGHUM is the bestselling author of All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten and numerous other books. He grew up in Waco, TX. He now divides his time among Seattle, Utah, and Crete.From Publishers Weekly:
Twenty years after his All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten became a record-breaking bestseller, Fulghum's authorial voice is still distinctive and his tone welcomingly upbeat, but this new collection of short pieces suffers from self-indulgence, roping in too many vague and inconsequential essays. The majority of the book falls into three sections, one for each of Fulghum's homes-Seattle, Moab, Utah and the island of Crete-and the strongest section is the Cretan, containing some lovely, incisive essays on his indomitable Greek housekeeper, "The Invincible Ioannoulla." Elsewhere his writing is well-meaning but feather-light while taking on topics like holidays, history, "players" and the conversations of strangers; even in the midst of terminal naivety, however, Fulghum's able to land an unexpected, resonant thought: "I walked on with the dog of my imagination running unleashed through the bushes of my brain, looking for a place to unload." Though these worthwhile passages and brief, shining moments make Fulghum's dissolution into wispy koans ("Go on. Escape over the walls of your asylum.") all the more disappointing, fans of Fulghum's storytelling will find much to savor.
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