By Chet Yarbrough
From the Corner of the Oval – A Memoir
By: Beck Dorey-Stein
Narrated by Beck Dorey-Stein
Beck Dorey-Stein (Author)
The value of Dorey-Stein’s memoir is how a twenty something adult makes his/her way in America. What Dorey-Stein reflects is not just for women. It reveals much about every human’s ambition to make their way in the world.
“From the Corner of the Oval” is a subjective view of the power and prestige of an American President. The President’s power is limited, and his prestige is largely manufactured by the media. However, Dorey-Stein’s story of aides who serve an American President is a journey of extraordinary privilege.
What will draw some to Dorey-Stein’s book is curiosity about what it is like to be an aide in an American Presidential Administration. Some of that curiosity is satisfied. “From the Corner of the Oval” offers a view of Barack Obama from the perspective of a true believer.
The universality of Dorey-Stein’s memoir is a magnification of what it is to be in your twenties, on your way to a future. Opportunity is presented to all people of the world, but few grasp its temporal significance. Only in reflection is lived experience understood.
In the beginning of adulthood, when one is on their own, they choose to do one thing or another to satisfy their need for fulfillment. Fulfillment is a measure of three things—acquisition of money, power, and some measure of prestige. Each of these measures are quantitatively and qualitatively different for every person.
Some desire money more than power, power more than prestige, or prestige more than money. It is a circle of insatiable desire.
Dorey-Stein writes of her experience as a woman in her twenties. She has experienced employment, loss of employment, search for new employment, reemployment, the luck (both good and bad) of sex as a single person, and partner infidelity as a perpetrator and victim. Many people in their twenties encounter these experiences. Dorey-Stein works through these experiences in her well-written and interesting memoir.
The seemingly worst part of her experience is infidelity. One concludes good and bad experiences are overcome by her position as aide in a Presidential administration, some close confidential friends, physical health, and her supportive parents.
Fidelity is a nearly insuperable difficulty for Dorey-Stein, just as it is for many human beings.
Sex is a biological necessity for continuation of any species. From puberty to your twenties through death, sex is present in practice or thought. Dorey-Stein shows the consequence of power and prestige mixed with a natural desire for sexual relationship.
Many may be appalled by the role money, power, and position play in genuine affection and love, but that is life. Along the way, Dorey-Stein gives her reader/listeners a seat in the oval office, Air Force One, and a tour of the world at government expense.