Quote of the Month
“That's writing, he said. Be simple, blunt, and profound.”
- Wright Thompson, Author
Note - Highly recommend the book Pappyland by Wright Thompson. Especially if you or the person you're shopping for this Christmas season is a fan of Bourbon.
The Pickleball Book - It's Here! It's Here!
Pickleball: It's a Big Dill! is no longer in the pre-order stage. The new book from Minnesota-based Author Vicki Sheaffer and Illustrator Chanda Cook is officially published and we already sold out of the first 100 copies. But never fear, a new shipment is on its way. You can order via the Long Overdue Bookstore or Amazon. Great stocking stuffers for any Pickleball players in your family!
Refresher - This book is an engaging rhyme paired with playful illustrations chronicling the history of Pickleball and the evolution of the game into today's latest and greatest court sport. A fun addition to the bookshelves of players of all ages!
Barnes & Noble sells more than 20 million books in December. And the seven days before Christmas is 20x the sales of an average week. (stats from New York Times)
I see firsthand how packed the bookstore in my neighborhood (Unabridged Bookstore) is Saturdays in December. Love to see it. Books have never stopped being a popular Christmas gift.
But the downside of having an online bookstore -- and not having the giant fleet of trucks that Amazon has -- is once December 16th / 17th hits, it becomes a crapshoot if the books will arrive to the customer before Christmas Day. This stinks, because those last 10 days before Christmas are prime book shopping time.
To help extend the book shopping season, at least for those in the Chicagoland area, we're hosting three pop-up events upstairs at Barrel Cheese & Wine right here in the Lakeview neighborhood of Chicago. This is a meaningful location for us on multiple levels, but the most significant is that we are publishing a cookbook of Ahmet Ergun's recipes. Ahmet is the owner of Barrel. And we'll be officially kicking off pre-orders for his book at these three events. Dates/times:
Sunday, December 17th
4 - 6 PM
Wednesday, December 20th
6 - 10 PM
Thursday, December 21st
6 - 10 PM
More to share in our December newsletter which will go out in about 2 weeks. We hope to see you there and look for more of these pop-up bookstore events in 2024 -- not just in Chicagoland, but also looking at sites in Michigan and Minnesota as well. Stay tuned!
Remembering a Hero: Andrew "Drew" Price
January 7, 1984 - November 13, 2023
Back in June, my family and I went to dinner at Sapori Trattoria, a restaurant almost right across the street from Chicago Fire Department E55. It was a beautiful summer evening. The kind of night when you gladly wait another 15-20 minutes to sit outside.
We passed by the fire station. The garage doors were up and there was a bright red fire engine parked inside. My son was just under 2 years old at the time and, like many almost 2-year-old sons, there's nothing more exciting in his world than a bus, a garbage truck, or -- the ultimate prize -- a firetruck. His eyes were glued to that station the second we turned his stroller onto Halsted.
As we passed by, one of the firemen waived us in the same way a family member does when the turkey's ready at Thanksgiving. He introduced himself and for the next 15-20 minutes, all of his attention was focused on our son. Caleb sat in the driver's seat of the fire engine. Used the small hand pump hose. Even got to wear the official firefighter jacket that was a good 20 sizes too big. The joy on Caleb's face was more than a smile. It was this look of awe, and wonder, and I gotta believe somewhere in his 2-year-old brain the memory was branded into his subconscious. I don't think it's possible to forget a first tour of a firehouse, even if you can't technically remember it. Those next few days Caleb gravitated to his toy firetruck even more than usual and Ms. Rachel's "Hurry Hurry Drive the Firetruck" replaced "The Wheels on the Bus Go Round and Round" at the top of his personal Billboard charts.
Two weeks ago, on a much colder night, my wife and I were sitting at home when Ashley saw the headline on her phone. CFD in mourning after death of firefighter Andrew Price in Lincoln Park. A fire broke out early Monday morning in a four-story building. There was a bar/restaurant on the ground floor, apartments above it. Andrew was on the roof opening up holes for ventilation when he fell through a skylight shaft while putting out hot spots. Our initial unresolved question, if "Andrew Price in Lincoln Park" was the same as the fireman named Drew at the Halsted station was officially answered when we saw the photo.
When reading Drew's obituary, there's a line: "He truly treasured being a fireman and instructed new cadets at the academy." ... even when that new cadet is 3 feet tall passing by in a stroller.
We are so sorry for the Price family's loss, to his friends, and to those who served alongside him. We'll always retell the story to Caleb, about the time he got to tour a firehouse with a true hero.
Keeping up with Long Overdue
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Also, if you have any questions, ideas, stories to tell, you can reach Cal the Librarian at - email@example.com