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Hilary’s Mom was an economist with the UN. Hilary had four parents: a mother, a father, and the father’s second wife, and the mother’s second husband. They were all economists. The two men were famous economists.
Hilary’s father, John Marcus Fleming worked for the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, his papers were published by Columbia. Marcus didn’t win a Nobel Prize but a Novel Prize does carry his name: “the Fleming effect”.
Hilary’s mother’s second husband was Emile Benoit. Emile had two PhDs from Harvard. He taught at Columbia Business, a graduate school. He chaired the committee that invented the “disarmament” of the cold war. Benoit disarmament didn’t mean that armed nations, certainly not the United States, would get rid of their arms, make fewer arms, have fewer arms; oh, no: it meant that the acceleration of arms would slow. This year you have 100 nukes, next year you don’t strip to 50 nukes, you make more nukes, but you accelerate the accumulation of nukes slower: instead of 50% more nukes next year next year you have 49% more nukes. Harvard, ha.
Hilary’s Dad’s wife was Gloria. Gloria was an economist for the IMF. Gloria and I became friends, long after Hilary abandoned me, no longer supporting the Free Learning Exchange.
Hilary’s Mom was Etta. I want to tell a couple of Etta stories. That will also give me a file to tell other stories about Hilary: and from Hilary’s side. Etta was the only one of the bunch not to have a PhD. Hilary has a PhD, Hilary’s sister has a PhD.
bk’s wife, Nathalie, has a PhD. My Free Learning Exchange aimed to obviate PhDs, get rid of then, stupid damn degree, destructive.
Hilary stopped supporting FLEX, stopped supporting me, the world never took up the habit, never stopped cause it never started.
Emile’s brother didn’t have a PhD. Emile’s brother didn’t have an MA, or an AB. Emile’s brother didn’t graduate from high school! Raymond merely wrote the definitive book on symbolic logic.
Emile and Raymond were New York Jews. Gloria was from the middle west. Marcus was British: Scottish, Flemish mixed in there. Etta was Austro-Hungarian: from Vienna.
Etta was an economist. Etta resisted, successfully, the UN’s attempts to use her as a secretary: she was a woman after all. Etta could type fine, but she didn’t let on: if the UN knew she could type she’d never get any other duties, economic skills or not.
One thing Etta did allow the UN to ask of her concerned filling in as a Hungarian translator when the regular Hungarian staff wasn’t easily available. Etta loved it that the Hungarian diplomats requested her as their preferred substitute. Then one day, ha ha, very funny, Etta found out why the Hungarians liked her: Etta hadn’t spoken Hungarian since she was a child. She was fluent, but unlearned. She’d been to school in German, in English, but not in Hungarian. So Etta’s Hungarian was “baby talk”. The diplomats loved it.
Etta’s folks could have done reality TV, had there been TV, or reality, then. PaPa had two houses: one on the street, one in the garden. PaPa lived in the house on the street, had easy access to the outside world; MaMa was locked in the garden. But PaPa remained courtly to her, after a fashion. PaPa would dress for diner. He’d call on the house in the garden. MaMa would take his arm. PaPa would escort MaMa to the house on the street. There they would dine. Then PaPa, in his uniform and white gloves, would escort MaMa back to her house way back in the garden.
Was MaMa a prisoner? Sounds half like it.