Saturday, June 04, 2022

Sunday Salon

"There is no such thing as coincidence." That's Rule #39 as decreed by Leroy Jethro Gibbs (the dreamy Mark Harmon), for many seasons the leader of the special agents on NCIS.

I don't care what Gibbs says, I've found coincidences in my reading lately. First of all, I kicked off Pride Month with a biography of Rock Hudson, the actor who became the first public face of AIDS. It wasn't by design. I'd forgotten June was Pride Month. I've wanted to read this bio since I saw two of Rock Hudson's best films at the TCM Classic Film Festival in April, and I just now got to it. Still, when I finished it, I was sad that he lived his life so deep in the closet. He seemed like a nice, hardworking, gentle man. I wish he hadn't had to live with the fear of exposure.

Then I picked up Dirty Blonde by Lisa Scottoline. I chose it because my library app (Hoopla) recommended it. I find Scottoline books diverting so I clicked on it. Guess what: it's about a judge who has a secret and is terrified of exposure.

I don't know what I'll read next, but I hope it's light and frothy. After all this intrigue and suspense, I'd like to spend time with people whose secrets are, to borrow from the movie Cabaret, as "fatale as an after dinner mint."

What about you? Do you find patterns to your reading/viewing? Do you plan it that way, or does it just happen?

Check out other Sunday Salon participants here.

Sunday Stealing


1. The best story your parents or grandparents tell about the good ole days. When my mom was a little girl during WWII, she spent a few late summer weeks each year with her grandparents. They didn't live on a farm, but it was during rationing so they kept chickens and traded the eggs with their neighbors. Anyway, this was her favorite end-of-summer tradition: she would choose the buttons, rickrack and bows that her grandmother would use to make her a new back-to-school dress ... out of a chicken feed bag! It sounds sad, but the way my mom told it, you could tell the memory delighted her. The decorations were sold by a door-to-door "notions" salesman, and when my mom saw him come up the walk with his case, she thought life couldn't get any better.
2. The best things in life are... (In alphabetical order) Baseball, the Beatles, books, and cats.
3, Things that drive me batty. People who excuse thoughtless, hurtful or rude behavior by using words/phrases like "truth bomb" and "keeping it real." They aren't honest and authentic, they're just selfish and self-involved. 
4. A place I'd like to live and why. The Palmolive Building, right here in Chicago. It's a historic old building (that rotating light at the top was added to help Lucky Lindy find his way!) and it provides awesome views of The Lake and Michigan Avenue. And it used to be Playboy's national headquarters. I think Hugh Hefner was a dreadful, dangerous man, so the idea of an old-school, unreconstructed feminist like me putting her feet up there is appealing.

The shortish bldg w/the bright beam, left center, behind the Drake, is my dream home

5. The best thing I've ever found. I don't know if this counts as "found," but the ATM at the local convenience store gave me two 20s instead of one, and no receipt. I asked the kid who worked there what to do -- expecting him to give me a phone number to call or something -- and he pretty much told me to go away. No one had ever asked him anything like this before and it genuinely annoyed him to be confronted by a new problem. The bank never deducted any money from my account, so I got $40 free. I was perpetually broke in those days, so I mightily appreciated the good fortune.
6. The best thing that happened recently is. Saturday my nephew and I exchanged texts about baseball and made plans to go to Wrigley Field together later in the summer. It occurs to me that, over the years, I've discussed the Cubs with my grandparents, my dad, my uncle, and now my nephew. The Cubs are the thread that connects us. This brings me joy.
7. I admire people who... give. Here's a picture of my favorite-most ballplayer, Anthony Rizzo. He was back in Chicago when his new team, The Yankees, played the White Sox. Before the game, he invited pediatric cancer patients onto the field during batting practice. He met these kids when he was a Cub and donated his time to Chicago's Lurie Children's Hospital and made good on his promise to treat them like VIPs at the ballpark.

BTW, Saturday he hit another home run. His 13th of the season. It cost me another $5, but I couldn't be happier. Through the Anthony Rizzo Home Run Challenge, every homer he hits raises funds to support pediatric cancer patients and their families.

Here he is back in April at Joe DiMaggio's Children's Hospital in Florida, when it was announced he was going to foot the bill for refurbishing the family lounge and play areas.

You know how people bitch and moan that today's athletes aren't role models? Here's a "truth bomb" for them: Anthony Rizzo probably does more good for kids every day than they do all year.

8. What makes me special.  Aw, hell. I'm just an all-around great gal.

9. I am looking forward to... special times with those I love. Soon John and I will celebrate his birthday. My oldest friend is coming to Chicago in August. I'm going to the ballpark with my nephew in September. And I believe with all my heart that I will have once again enjoy a nice, long phone conversation with my friend Henry when he is feeling better.

10. Things that scare me. Clowns, squirrels, and losing Henry forever.

11. Complaints I have. The same people who insist that wearing a mask to school is detrimental to a child's emotional well-being will say, with a straight face, that arming teachers and putting students through live shooter drills is somehow acceptable. "Consistency, thou art a jewel."

12. I could never live without... caffeine.
13. Things that make me laugh. Lots of things. But I shall share this with you. Ah, Lydia! When her muscles start relaxing, up the hill comes Andrew Jackson. (PS If you can your eyes off Groucho, watch Harpo. He seems to be having the best time.)