the first time

the first time

Bill Clinton's speech : I was so impressed and surprised

3h ago
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The first time I saw her we were, appropriately enough, in a class on political and civil rights. She had thick blond hair, big glasses, wore no makeup, and she had a sense of strength and self- possession that I found magnetic. After the class I followed her out, intending to introduce myself. I got close enough to touch her back, but I couldn't do it. Somehow I knew this would not be just another tap on the shoulder, that I might be starting something I couldn't stop. And I saw her several more times in the next few days, but I still didn't speak to her. Then one night I was in the law library talking to a classmate who wanted me to join the Yale Law Journal. He said it would guarantee me a job in a big firm or a clerkship with a federal judge. I really wasn't interested, I just wanted to go home to Arkansas. Then I saw the girl again, standing at the opposite end of that long room. Finally she was staring back at me, so I watched her. She closed her book, put it down and started walking toward me. She walked the whole length of the library, came up to me and said, look, if you're going to keep staring at me... ...and now I'm staring back, we at least ought to know each other's name. I'm Hillary Rodham, who are you? I was so impressed and surprised that, whether you believe it or not, momentarily I was speechless. Finally, I sort of blurted out my name and we exchanged a few words and then she went away. Well, I didn't join the Law Review, but I did leave that library with a whole new goal in mind. A couple of days later, I saw her again. I remember, she was wearing a long, white, flowery skirt. And I went up to her and she said she was going to register for classes for the next term. And I said I'd go, too. And we stood in line and talked -- you had to do that to register back then -- and I thought I was doing pretty well until we got to the front of the line and the registrar looked up and said, Bill, what are you doing here, you registered morning? I turned red and she laughed that big laugh of hers. And I thought, well, heck, since my cover's been blown I just went ahead and asked her to take a walk down to the art museum. We've been walking and talking and laughing together ever since. And we've done it in good times and bad, through joy and heartbreak. We cried together this morning on the news that our good friend and a lot of your good friend, Mark Weiner, passed away early this morning. We've built up a lifetime of memories. After the first month and that first walk, I actually drove her home to Park Ridge, Illinois... ...to meet her family and see the town where she grew up, a perfect example of post World War II middle-class America, street after street of nice houses, great schools, good parks, a big public swimming pool, and almost all white. I really liked her family. Her crusty, conservative father, her rambunctious brothers, all extolling the virtues of rooting for the Bears and the Cuba. And for the people from Illinois here, they even told me what "waiting for next year"