“I Have Impure Thoughts” (1971)


Raymond Huessy’s first exposure to his grandfather’s teaching on history, life, and faith came in the summer of 1971, when he was hired to make copies of the original reel-to-reel tapes of several Dartmouth lecture courses (and so became the first person to listen to the tapes in many years). He was to make the copies in real time, listening to the courses in their entirety, and turn in outlines of each lecture to help make the contents of the courses easily accessible.

He only managed to copy two full courses and, as it turned out, his notes were essentially useless, being even more loosely organized than the lectures themselves, and made up largely of random quotes taken out of context. And most of the quotes he did write down later turned out to be inaccurate when Frances and Mark Huessy transcribed the lectures.

The one thing he did manage to accomplish was pretty frivolous; he put together a collection of some of the more amusing quotes as a present for his father’s 50th birthday. It is the contents of that little hand-drawn and hand-bound booklet that is offered here. The title was “I Have Impure Thoughts.” The author bio that was meant to grace the back cover said that “Eugen Rosenstock-Huessy is the world’s foremost champion of the religious significance of ice cream. He is also the author of several books.”