A Visit With A Remarkable Man

I have got to go back and get something recorded.  And there’s not a lot of time.

I visited an elderly acquaintance in a nursing home’s medical center.  We’ve known each other around the theater for several years and, while we’ve had a few fun conversations and I’ve always found him charming, witty, and talented, we’ve never been close.  But I heard that he had been ill, and I had opportunity to go see him, and took it.

He has prostate cancer that has metastasized to the bones.  His mind is quite sharp and he says he’s not in too much discomfort, but he’s not going to get better.  He’s at peace with this.  But the time is short.

He mentioned that it had been his habit for several years to recite “A Visit From St. Nicholas” on Christmas Eve to a tour group he and his wife went with.  Health precluded it this time but he had performed it at the nursing home and the small audience was reportedly very appreciative.

I told him I’d be very honored if he’d do it for me.  And so, for an audience of myself and his wife, this elderly, smiling, frail, wheelchair-bound old actor delivered Clement C. Moore’s classic poem.  And did it brilliantly.

I absolutely have to get him to do that again, and record it.  Jaw dropping.

‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house, not a creature was stirring……

God bless, friends.

Advice for Red-Nosed Reindeer

  1. When all of the other reindeer laugh and call you names, just remember that they’re really acting out on their own insecurities.  Reindeer can be cruel, and it’s partly their own fear and inability to empathize influencing them.  They don’t mean any real harm by it.  The important thing is that you believe in yourself, and don’t let their insincere insults define who you are.
  2. When they won’t let you play games with them, look on it as an opportunity to develop self-sufficiency in yourself.  Develop some outside interest, work on a skill, exercise.  Better yet, go find someone who needs a friend or some compassionate support and make a difference in their lives.  Don’t waste your energy trying to force yourself in–there will be too much temptation to fake it.
  3. Speaking of which, don’t ever wear a false nose.  God made you beautiful and special.  Embrace it!
  4. If they only love you because of what you can do for them, it’s not real love.  But it’s important to remember to stay true to yourself and your friends, and your true value will shine through.

Oh, and by the way, if you really are “the most famous reindeer of all,” why was it necessary to ask if people recalled you after listing the other eight bucks on the team?  Sounds like a little savvy marketing and promotion to me.  Keep that song writer around.

Gingerbread Houses

Happy Thursday, friends!

Tomorrow is December 1st, when I officially allow myself to get excited about Christmas.

But I wanted to tell you a story about a little girl who was excited when I met her.

She and her mother were in the grocery store line behind me.  Mom had a basket full of stuff, she was proudly clutching a gingerbread house kit and grinning widely.

There was a bit of a wait, so in order to pass the time I politely admired it and asked her if she got to help put it together.

I kid you not, she didn’t take a breath:

“My little brother’s at home and he’s asleep and he can’t help because he’s too little but I can because I’m going to kindergarten and I had a birthday and a Frozen birthday party and Anna’s my favorite but also Elsa and Olaf and Sven.  Sven’s the reindeer.” 


So…..that’s a “yes” on helping with the gingerbread house, then?


Hope all’s well out there, friends, and God bless.