Recently, Hue has been enjoying excerpts of Lemonade, an autobiography by Bernard L. Dillard, an assistant professor of mathematics at FIT. The book won the gold award in the “Autobiography/Memoirs” category in Dan Poynter’s 2013 Global EBook Awards. Not every word is true—Dillard includes a disclaimer that it was “inspired by actual events”—but boy is it ever juicy. We won’t disclose the scandalous bits; you’ll have to read the book yourself. Let’s just say that Dillard’s coming-of-age tale has a moment or two that might make you blush.
(Dillard with his sister and mother, 1980.)
But there’s heartache in the book, too. Dillard’s family owned a successful barbecue restaurant in Durham, North Carolina, but his parents fought constantly. One relative had a nervous breakdown; drugs entered the picture. Dillard writes, “Our name was respected in the community because of our restaurant business, but here we were, going through hell while everybody thought we were the Cosbys.”
(Above: Dillard, age 5 or so.)
The good news is, Dillard turned out all right. More than all right, actually. He—or the character based on him— graduated from Morehouse College with degrees in English and Mathematics. Dillard has published essays on obscure math topics like “wavelet-based statistical techniques used for biosurveillance and national security.” He’s also made a name for himself as a model and actor. We love the fact that he appeared on the TV show The Wire. You can watch a clip of him on the show here:
Read more about Lemonade here.
Check out Dillard’s site here.