We were guests of an old friend this holiday season. We go back a long way, and I always look forward to reconnecting this time of year, especially. When I took up tennis in mid-age some years ago, George was the most welcoming member of the local tennis center. He forbear my ineptitude, and even partnered in doubles with me. With him as my teacher, I learned fast. We had many great matches as doubles partners; even came "that close" to winning a club championship one time. In addition to being a gracious, and warm person, he was a superb tennis player with joie de vivre. When he hit a winner, he would punctuate the moment with an "ole!"
Today we had the pleasure of meeting his son, Jim, wife Ann, and their two charming daughters, Elizabeth, 8, and Olivia, 6.
Turns out Jim had borrowed his dad's copy of Extraordinary Comebacks. He had been reading it to his daughters, who shared some of their favorite stories with me, notably Abraham Lincoln, among others. (What intelligent children....and what could flatter an author more --- than familiarity with his work?)
Basking in this bit of unexpected recognition, and storing some of the vibe away for fuel as I work on volume 3, I soon thought of another great good friend's words, when I asked him for a comment:
"......This should be required reading for young people about to get "smacked upside the head" a few times by life. This book will give them 201 reasons to get up off the canvas and keep on keeping on. Older readers will be nodding in agreement -- wishing they had read this book forty years ago."
Tim Kazurinsky, screenwriter, actor, former cast member, "Saturday Night Live"