Bacon on the Bookshelf

Savory picks for the free range reader

Summer Reading Special: He Said/She Said featuring Rich and Anne Maradik

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Rich Maradik is an entrepreneur and a family man, sometimes on the road for business and just as often on the road with one of his children for college visits, golf tourneys, or arts camp.  He served as a page in Washington D.C. in the years before scandals were the norm, but these days flying the flag on the Fourth of July is enough politics.  Rich is never without a smile, possessing a warmth and equanimity of spirit I’ve never seen him leave at home.  His wife Anne, a Vanderbilt classmate, puts the biggest smile on his face!  “We had several good mutual friends but never met in college, which he claims is the reason we’re married now,” she notes drily.  Anne is wrapping up her service on the vestry at St. George’s Episcopal Church and heading into her role as chair-elect of the Harpeth Hall parent association, which she’s excited about.  She spent time in broadcast journalism before the children arrived, and she retains the polish and poise developed during those years.  Another skill she’s maybe always had: Anne listens, she pays attention, and she remembers, wonderful qualities in a friend and as a storehouse of community knowledge.  You’ll hear her beautiful singing voice if you’re lucky enough to stand beside her at a Christmas party when friends gather at the piano.

Today, Anne and Rich answer a few questions about summer (I couldn’t resist a few musical references for my musical friend)…

Summertime and the livin is easy – yes? no? 

Rich:  People are generally happier during summer, making for more leisurely and “easy” living.  It’s the change in pace we all desperately need.

Anne:  Yes – in every way.  Summer is its own brand of busy when you have kids on the move, but I’ll take it!

These are a few of my favorite things…

Rich:  Big Green Egg’ing, golfing at sunset, relaxed dinners with friends and family vacations.

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Anne:  Longer days, convertible weather, fireflies, farmers’ markets, the change of pace and no homework.

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“Aspen Lodge”: Watercolor of their cabin at Lake Tahoe by Janetta Fleming

On the road again?

Rich:  Yes, to Anne’s family’s cabin in Lake Tahoe, where we get back to the simple life.  Also business trips to Spain, France and the UK and several of the old standbys in the US like Orlando, Chicago, New York, DC and Dallas.  Oh, and not to forget Bonnaroo (close but really a world away).  Plus what she says…

Anne:  We’re traveling quite a bit this year – all over the country.  Since Jackson is a rising senior, we’ve been coast to coast on college visits.  Also I’m going up and back to Michigan to get Maddie to camp, and in August we’re headed to Pinehurst, NC, with Bo for a golf tournament.  Our family vacation was out to Lake Tahoe, where I’ve grown up going.  Jackson has the biggest travel adventure this summer – he’s headed to Australia for a month as an exchange student.

Hot fun in the summer as a kid…

Rich:  Growing up in Western Colorado, summertime was almost more fun than winter.  Summer camp in Telluride, bike racing on the Colorado National Monument and swim meets all over the state.

Anne:  My favorite memories of summer are spending 3-4 weeks in California, visiting my mother’s family.  We would spend a week in La Jolla, a week in the Bay Area and a week in Tahoe.  It was a great way to escape the Mississippi heat, and I always came back changed in a good way.

Memorable summer job working 9 to 5 as a teen?

Rich:  Lawn mowing service.  My hometown of Grand Junction, Colorado went through a hard economic slowdown thanks to the “bust” of the oil shale industry in the ‘80s.  Some friends and I contracted with realtors to maintain many of the unoccupied homes on the market.

Anne:  Starting at the age of 15, I worked on Saturday mornings in the pro shop at our swim and tennis club in Jackson, MS.  My job was to assign tennis courts and ring up transactions.  It was the best job imaginable!  Most days my friends would come by and hang out with me before I got off and we could hit the pool.

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A bottle of white/A bottle of red/Perhaps a bottle of rosé instead… Best summertime restaurant to share a bottle of wine in Nashville?  (And can you name that song without google?)  Favorite summertime drink?

Rich:  Mr. Billy Joel’s “Scenes from an Italian Restaurant.”  Although it’s not one of the many wonderful, hip “new” restaurants in town, nothing beats relaxing at Bricktops’ outside seating.  Favorite drink:  Rosé, anywhere.

Anne:  Scenes from an Italian Restaurant by Billy Joel!  I love Epice – especially in the summer.  Favorite drink:  It’s a toss up between an ice cold Rosé and a Gin and Tonic made with Hendricks and a cucumber.  Our back porch – with friends and neighbors – is my favorite venue for cocktail hour.

unnamed-4Beach, lake, tropical destination:  where are you walking on sunshine?

Rich:  Fallen Leaf Lake near Lake Tahoe.  One of my favorite places on earth.

Anne:  I’ve never seen a more beautiful beach than the ones on the Gulf – Rosemary is our family’s favorite.  And I have particularly fond memories of a day years ago on a private beach in St. John with some good Nashville friends.  But overall – my favorite beach to spend a day is Baldwin Beach on Lake Tahoe.  There’s nothing like sitting on the warm sand, surrounded by snow-capped mountains.

original_UniversalHulkAmusement park ride most likely to give you good vibrations?

Rich:  Riding coasters with our daughter, Maddie, where, for her, the faster and more daring the better.  Hulk at Universal or the Screamin’ Eagle at Dollywood.

Anne:  I’m afraid of heights so I don’t care much for most amusement park rides.  But I do have a passion for a particular state fair food.  Corn dogs!

“I shoulda known you were bad news/From the bad boy demeanor and the tattoos”

Rich:  I can’t envision a scenario where I would ever get a tattoo.

Anne:  I could never decide on a tattoo.  Such a commitment!

Thunder only happens when it’s raining… What will you be reading when you’re stuck inside?  

Rich:  My business read is The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz.  Other books:  Flash Points by George Friedman (really helps put the Brexit in context), Walking with Jack: A Father’s Journey to Become His Son’s Caddie by Don Snyder, Strong and Weak: Embracing a Life of Love, Risk and True Flourishing” by Andy Crouch.

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Anne:  This is terrible to admit, especially to my good friend who writes a book blog, but lately when I’ve had the time, I just might be found catching up on some tv shows instead of reading.  This summer I’ve binge-watched “House of Cards” and “Veep.”

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As far as books go, I did recently finish the novel The Nest, which I enjoyed mildly.  And at least every other summer, I will re-read something from the Mitford Series.  I know they’re cheesy, but those books are like soup for the soul – they just make me happy.

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Image of wine:  Denis Doyle for The New York Times (A glass of rose Ameztoi Rubentis wine at the Ameztoi Txakolina vineyard of Ignacio Ameztoi Aranguren in Getaria, Spain.)

Image of roller coaster:  from Travelsort.com

9 Comments

  1. Anne and Rich, enjoyed reading this. We have a rising senior grandchild at SA this year who will likely be headed west. Can’t wait to hear where Jackson goes. By the way you two look amazing.

  2. Two of my favorite people! Love to hear how this lovely family is spending their summer and what they are reading. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Again, I love and look forward to this series in my inbox every week! And couldn’t agree more on the Mitford series, it is truly good for the soul!

  4. in the interest of factual accuracy a few notes/questions need to be made:
    1. page views will shoot up if rich is eliminated from opening picture
    2. peaceful painting of Lake Tahoe cabin should include at least one angry grizzly in the background
    3. rosé? really? the folks at Blantons won’t be happy about this…
    4. apolitical?
    5. devoted loving couple who really care for each other? without a doubt…

  5. Always a treat whenever Anne and Rich are involved. What a great couple!

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