OCTOBER 19, 1942
WASHINGTON, Sunday—Saturday afternoon I went to make a recording which is to be part of one of the Treasury programs. It will be an interesting program with messages from various women in different parts of the world. Most of them, however, were not available to speak for themselves.
I like to make recordings and hear the results played back, because I discover things I do incorrectly. In the first place, I learn exactly where I take a breath when I shouldn't. In the second place, I have a curiously artificial way of speaking, which annoys me terribly when I hear it afterwards. Still, I can not find out exactly what I do that is wrong.
Yesterday, I think, I found that one of my troubles is pitching my voice too high at the start, and talking too slowly. Problems like this always interest me and each time I try to speak a little differently, in the hope that eventually it will all turn out better than it has before.
We have had the pleasure of having some children as guests over the weekend. I took the little boy to see the recording, since this generation understands far more about machines than any generation ever did.
On my return to the White House, I had a few people come in to tea. Among them was Mr. Kingsley Martin, who is one of the people who has long been active in the British labor movement. I was much interested in the opportunity to talk with him, since he has been over here some time studying conditions in this country.
Last evening we had a party which we planned primarily for the children—an early supper and a movie, the title of which sounded as though they would enjoy it. Unfortunately, it turned out to be the type of song and dance affair which I imagined was produced and sent very largely to other countries before the war. It depicts life in this country as it was never lived by any people I know.
My diplomatic friends tell me that this is one of the things which have helped to create strange impressions of life in the United States of America. Such stories never have had much basis in reality and will have less and less as the war goes on. Every day life has changed for people all over the world. It has changed for us in that everything we buy for our families and homes costs more but I doubt if we have yet felt the complete extent of the change which will take place as the years of war continue.