My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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NEW YORK, Tuesday—As I look back over my day yesterday, I seem chiefly to have been going to and from speeches during the afternoon and the evening! The people who stand out in my mind are the very kindly taxicab drivers. Two of them were very nice telling me that their wives would be so much interested when they told them they had had a chance to talk to me.

One driver told me something which interested me greatly. He said that he felt that the average man today could talk more intelligently about his government than ever before and that for the first time they felt a real sense of responsibility to keep in touch with what was going on. If that is a general feeling it augurs well for us in the future.

My luncheon meeting was very long today, and they were kind enough to present me with a plaque which will be placed in one of the rooms in a new building which the Women's League for Palestine is erecting. The plaque commemorates the establishment of a course in vocational guidance and I feel deeply honored that such a good piece of work will be in some way connected with me.

This is the season of the year when the Community Mobilization for Human Needs takes place. It is the women's function in this group to interpret to the community as a whole, the achievements of the various charitable and social organizations supported by the Community Chests. It would seem unnecessary to tell people about the functions of organizations which they can see in the operation, but so many people take little or no interest in the social organizations that it is a good thing each year for the women to go to work and gather the facts and make then known. I hope that as usual the mobilization will be very successful and that the funds collected will meet all the needs of the various communities.

A rather touching card came up to me this evening at the end of my speech. I was attempting to answer questions which ran from the proper pronounciation of my name to "What do you consider an adequate standard of living in New York City," when a slip of paper was handed me which said in substance that the writer had grown up and lived in an environment of poverty in a big city, but that she thought I knew more about certain conditions than even she did, and that I had taught her a great deal. It was a great compliment, for it meant that I had succeeded in making real to her conditions in other parts of the country, and it taught me that if you have seen a thing at first hand and felt it, you are able to paint it so that it seems truthful to somebody else.

I have just been presented with a most gorgeous new lamp for my apartment which gives a great deal more light than I ever had before. I am not sure, however, that it is wise to shed so much light over some of my ancient shabbiness, but it is going to be much better for our eyes and my guests will be able to see what they are eating!

E.R.
TMsd 19 October 1937, AERP, FDRL