Ever since Jan Harold Brunvand came up the phrase "urban legend" (in his book, The Choking Doberman and Other New Urban Legends, among others) we've all gotten a little savvier about those stories that "really happened" to the now-proverbial FOF (friend of a friend).
Down the street from where I grew up lived Mr. Ingvoldstadt. His son, Roy, was in my class at the nearby elementary school. Roy was very bright, particularly at math. We've all had those moments of "I get it!" With Roy, those moments were like the flashing of a huge sword.
If I grasp the historic and generational dynamics correctly, all of our public institutions are being "re-valued." That may sound impressive, but all it means is that society is taking a look at institutions that were unquestioned goods to a previous generation, to see if they still "work."
My daughter Maddy and her best friend, Andee, are 9 years old. They like to read, which certainly pleases me. Mostly, they like Nancy Drew stories.
Here I confess something I would never have admitted were it not for the courageous example of Phil, Andee's dad. Yes, I have picked up the occasional Nancy Drew story myself.