Medimont Reflections. By Chris Carlson. May 2013. 222 pages. ISBN-13: 978-0945648055. Price $15.95
With an introduction by former Governor Cecil D. Andrus.
Chris Carlson’s Medimont Reflections is a followup on his biography of former Idaho Governor Cecil Andrus. This one expands the view, bringing in Carlson’s take on Idaho politics, the Northwest energy planning council, environmental issues and much more.
The Idaho Statesman: “a pull-back-the-curtain account of his 40 years as a player in public life in Idaho.”
From Chris’ introduction to the book:
In early November of 2011, I was sitting on a stage with Governor Cecil D. Andrus in front of an audience at the City Club of Boise to discuss my just published remembrances of the many fine years I spent with him as press secretary.
He had generously agreed to make some promotional appearances to generate sales and to co-sign some books.
Moderator Marty Peterson, then government affairs coordinator for the University of Idaho, is a true Idaho history buff. Andrus had tapped him years before to be the executive director of the Idaho Centennial celebration.
Marty turned to me and asked, “Chris, just where the hell is Medimont?” I answered too quickly, giving him the literal answer and describing accurately where it is geographically.
I did not get a word in edgewise after that. (That was fine with me. I knew who folks were coming to see and hear). Andrus was off and running with a one hour-monologue that rivals anything one has ever heard. My home was the only question tossed directly to me.
I could have and should have answered the question in a metaphorical sense. Perhaps something like this:
“Marty, Medimont, while an actual old post office stop in southern Kootenai County, can more accurately be described as a state of mind one comes to terms with as they move through life. It literally means “middle mountain,” but it also conveys a sense of being at the half-time of life’s journey, the mid-point, if you will, between idealism tempered with harsh reality.”
As we grow older, we acquire knowledge bumps, going through the process of trial and error, and hopefully learning from our mistakes. We should reach a point of equilibrium. At this balancing point, this medimont, we are at last at peace with our own mortality. We come to recognize salvation lies in service to others, sublimating our ego and squashing our selfishness in the interests of others.
The genesis of this book grew out of a conversation with Randy Stapilus, owner of Ridenbaugh Press and publisher of this work. I was telling him about having gone through the clips of columns I did from Washington, D.C., for the Lewiston Tribune, the Idaho State Journal and several other Idaho clients during my sojourn there in 1971 and 1972.
One of the themes running through many of these essays is that bringing about change, especially if it requires Congressional action, is one long slog. Those desiring to protect special areas, for example, better be in it for the long haul and better be prepared to invest a considerable amount of time. It is also my modest hope readers will learn more about some of the less remembered but still important figures of the past who helped make Idaho the great state it is.
As conservative and Republican as my native state currently is, I hope my undying love for its citizens shines through. I feel incredibly lucky and blessed to have played a small part in the various events that have shaped this state in the last 40 years.