A couple of weeks ago, my mother, Angelina Katz, did her second debate on behalf of Barack Obama. A debate? My mother? If you knew her, you’d be both shocked and amused. Just over one year ago she suffered a stroke that took most of her sight, and her mobility. She had to quit the day care center job she loved and was alone much of the day unable to read or even watch TV. Politics was the furthest thing from her mind.
After living her entire life in New Jersey, my mom is now happy to live in western Pennsylvania, a few minutes from my brother and his family in an apartment in a wonderful assisted living St. Barnabus facility. Happily, this move has positively changed her life. She and my father were politically active in my youth (my dad was Mayor of Edgewater Park and my mom was on the Township Committee), but I thought that era was long past. My mom’s latest long hand letter (she writes to me since her hearing is bad and phone conversations become surrealistic yelling fests) had me both laughing and crying. And, it convinced me that hope and change are truly ageless. So, here it is, in my mother’s words.
October 16, 2008
My dearest Carla:
Just a few lines to see if you’re all right. Hope you’re getting through this month. I wish I could help but I am limited. Be strong and smart and give them hell. Remember, change is good. You be healthy, strong and have faith. I love you so my remarkable girl. I guess Montana and Cooper are back in school. Please hug them for me and whisper in their ears that Nannie loves them.
I love it here and I keep busy and do the best I can. I go to the coffee chats and have been talking “change” for the Democrats. PA is a swing state you know! They are strong Republicans here but I talk issues. I hope B.O. and Joe B. get in. I vote right here in the mall. I voted in the primary for B.O. A Story: After my first debate (your brother told you I did that didn’t he?), I did a second one! I had Anna buy candy and those mini Dove ice cream bars. After the debate, I gave them out and I said, please enjoy and think how sweet these taste and how sweet change will be after all the Bush bitter years, and vote for change on November 4th for Barack Obama. And, if some of you can’t remember (they’re pretty old here), think BO on Nov. 4. Ha Ha Ha. Well, they loved the sweets and so keep your fingers and toes crossed for this Nov. 4th.
This past Saturday night, I went down to dinner with five friends in our group. This sweet little 90-year-old named Becky, who was at my second coffee chat, sat next to me and she hasn’t been here long. We ordered (she only eats fish or chicken and drinks wine). Story goes, I asked the group what do you think about the bailout and they told me to shut up already. Out of the blue, Becky said, I remember, vote for BO because he is sweet as candy. Well, I laughed.! How sweet. Now I have to knock on her door to remind her to vote now that I know what her room number is. I have a list of room numbers to remind people to vote. Picture this, me with my walker that has a seat bringing Becky on it, wheeling her in to vote. She has a cane she can use to avert voting traffic! Can you picture this? We all look like the walker scene part of the film “The Producers”! Give my remarkable grandchildren all my love and a really big hug. I love you. Always be strong and handle life with a touch of humor.
God bless, Mom
P.S. Vote Nov. 4th, Sweet B.O.