Mystic Pizza Box

Mystic Pizza Box
A slice of heaven

Sunday, August 5, 2012

A Special Request for Alberto

Last May Vincent made his annual trip to Utah for the Ride for Heroes event to raise funds for Meth-Cops, a cause he has personally supported for years. Although Alberto and I had already sent our birthday cards and donations for Meth-Cops and the NLEOMF directly to Chris Carr to deliver to Vincent, I decided to make a separate and secret request for my little brother. I hadn't seen Vincent in person since last October in Westfield, NJ and couldn't make the trip to Utah due to my mom's illness. One of our favorite movies is Men In Black, and I had tried to ask Vincent to sign my DVD copy after the DGITW screening at NYIT in November 2010, only to be rebuffed by his bodyguard at the time. I had planned it as a surprise for Alberto's birthday on November 26, but never got the autograph. Oh well, I decided to try again this year. Fortunately, I have a connection to Vincent. :) Vincent's sister Toni and I have chatted on Facebook from time to time, as well as on Twitter. She was also at the meet and greet at Joe's Pub in July 2010 when I first met Vincent after the GGG benefit concert for Meth-Cops. She even messaged me last year to tell me that Vincent brought home the Mystic Pizza box I gave him, signed by me, and kept it. Cool! Last year I sent Toni a book about Harry Houdini as a birthday gift for Vincent while he was in Utah and she gave him the book during his visit. In early May os this year, I messaged Toni on Facebook and asked her if I could send her the DVD for Vincent to sign and she said yes. I also included my Blu-ray copy of Mystic Pizza and some chocolate bars from Zabars for Toni in the package I mailed c/o Rib City Grill in American Fork, Utah. Unfortunately, the Priority Mail package didn't make it there in time, so Toni promised to ask Vincent to sign both DVDs during a planned family reunion in Florida in late June, which coincided with his birthday. In the meantime, as you know by now, my mother's health took a drastic turn and she ended up in the hospital on June 22, 2012 with pneumonia. The next night she died and was resuscitated after seven minutes and she has been on a respirator ever since. She's now in a nursing home and has contracted pneumonia again, which is really discouraging for us. I don't know if she'll make it through the summer and every day is a battle to keep her alive so she'll have a chance to recover. Alberto has been holding up better than I thought he would, but he really misses Mom. My older brother and I have been monitoring her progress, if you can call it that, at the hospital and at the nursing home, although Antonio is currently in Mexico to enroll my nephew in school and settle his affairs before returning to New York in two weeks. Dad is helping to hold down the fort while Antonio is away, but the strain is wearing on him-he is 77 years old, after all, and in not the best of health himself. As for me, it's been awhile since I've had a good night's sleep. I tell Alberto that Mommy is resting with the other people at the nursing home, which we have visited together several times this week. Alberto calls River Manor the "nursery home," which I think is cute. An interesting side note, for LOCI fans: Mom's nursing home is located in Canarsie, Brooklyn, which is the neighborhood where Bobby and Frank Goren grew up. Anyway, some time had passed since I sent the DVDs to Toni and I remembered it just the other day, so I messaged Toni again to inquire. Wouldn't you know it, the next day, August 2, my DVDs arrived by Priority Mail in the self-addressed and stamped envelope I had sent for Toni or Vincent to use to return them to me. Vincent signed both DVDs, the MIB for Alberto and Mystic Pizza for me. Wow! Talk about perfect timing! I messaged Toni on FB to thank her and Vincent and she said "Anytime." :) We appreciate all your prayers and well wishes for Mom. Your support means so much to me and my family. Thank you all so much! Mwaah!

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