Wednesday, November 06, 2019

It's been days ...

... since I rhapsodized about Anthony Rizzo. So let's remedy that right now. Lookee here!

Rizzo’s Family Foundation just donated $1 million dollars to the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital in Hollywood, Florida. Hollywood is just 30 miles from Parkland, where Rizz grew up.

In 2008, when he was still in his teens, Anthony was diagnosed with cancer. At the same time his grandmother was fighting her own losing battle with the disease. He learned the hard way that when a family member has cancer, it impacts the whole clan. He's made helping children and families cope with cancer his off-field career.

Here in Chicagoland, he's been an angel to the parents at Lurie Children's Hospital. In 2017, his foundation built the new waiting room ($3.5 million) so that no parent will ever have to be uncomfortable while visiting their kid. Last year, he donated another $2 million to help families make ends meet while their child is being treated. (I read a note from a grateful mom who said that this donation made it possible for her other children to be in safe, secure daycare while she was at the hospital because no mother can be in two places at once, least of all the mother of a sick child.)

This year, for Christmas, I'm giving as many Anthony Rizzo Family Foundation gifts as I can. I know the money will go to a good cause.


WWW. WEDNESDAY asks three questions to prompt you to speak bookishly. To participate, and to see how other book lovers responded, click here

1. What are you currently reading
Becoming by Michelle Obama. Am I the last one to read this? It was the best-selling hardcover book of last year, and it's been sitting on my TBR pile, literally, for 11 months!
Shame on me for taking so long to get to it. I'm not very deep into it yet, but I'm entranced. She writes about her girlhood, just 20 miles/20 minutes from where I grew up, and I recognize and appreciate the authenticity of her recollections and her writing. I look forward to the rest of her journey.

2. What did you recently finish reading?  Touched by the Sun: My Friendship with Jackie by Carly Simon. And now I've got another First Lady! Only this book is very different from Becoming. It's not a cradle-to-grave look at Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, it's the story of one specific relationship: the friendship between Carly Simon and her New York/Martha's Vineyard buddy, Jackie.
It's a strange little volume, because Carly Simon is a complicated woman and that colors her relationships. But it has some very poignant, touching moments. Example: Carly unexpectedly hears a song on the radio ("Her Town, Too") by her ex-husband, the love of her life, James Taylor, and it shakes her. She shares this with Jackie, who commiserates. She says for her, it's "Greensleeves (What Child Is This?)" that brings "Jack" back to her, and at the most unexpected times. I'd always assumed it would be hearing one of JFK's speeches, in his own voice, that would bother her. But it was this ubiquitous Christmas carol, his favorite, that touched her most.

It's these "girlfriend" moments -- two women sharing themselves at their most unguarded -- that makes this worth reading.
3.  What will you read next? I don't know.