Friday, July 03, 2020


Ona better day
After my first visit to the hospital to visit my daughter with the procedures that are now in place because of the COVID-19, the thought of having to go through it seems discouraging. You get online and someone takes your temperature, asks questions, and if you pass muster are given a paper sticker that says you have been screened and the date is hand-written on it. Then you wait some more as the competency level of the people you must now deal with varies from very competent and accommodating to total incompetence, holding up the line of people. Then I think about my daughter and the fact that she is so sick she doesn’t know I am there. But despite it all, I need to see my daughter.

Finally, I am on my way up to the 4th floor and the ICU where I am greeted by a plastic wall with a zipper I need to use to enter her room. A nurse greets me and tells me she was waiting for me and that I need to don a gown and gloves, along with my mask. I do as I’m told and enter, and there lies my daughter Ellen, an oxygen tube running from her nose while she is soundly asleep, and her mouth agape.

As I inch closer to her bedside, I see all the machinery that she is connected to, the numbers and progress lines lighting up the screens, monitoring, and keeping the staff informed of her physical being. She looks helpless, vulnerable, and sick and all I want to do is reach into the bed and hold her, telling her I love her that I will always love her that I wish I had her suffering and she was free to laugh and giggle once more. It hurts that I can’t do it.

Suddenly, she starts to move, her eyes still shut as she maneuvers the dark world of infections from unknown origin, restrictions of her hands so she won’t pull out the different pick-lines, and intravenous that invades her body. I look at her and I want to cry.

As she moves slightly, I call her name… “Ellen… pussycat… hey, it’s daddy!” Suddenly she hears me as her eyes flutter open, a soft smile crosses her lips, and acknowledgment of my presence. With great trouble, she lifts her head turning in my direction and opens her eyes a little. We have connected, for the first time since March 7th! My last visit to her at the hospital was two-days ago without any recognition or interaction.

I ask her how she is, I tell her I love her and that she is my baby. “You my baby?” She does something she hasn’t done in a while as she plays off those words and shakes her head ‘No’ just as she always did in the past. “You love me?” she smiles. “Are you a good girl?’ She smiles, “Do you love me?” She shakes her head ‘no’, but she is smiling. Suddenly my world is turned upside down, I forget about all the inconvenience that occurred to get to her room and am glad I did it. Her smiling at me, her shaking her head, her looking at me transforms my mood from one of despair to one of overwhelming joy. I won’t leave her while this is going on, even if I have to stay until the next day! It is special!

Then, just as suddenly as it occurs, she drifts off to sleep once more. I realize that I don’t want to make her upset, that if she is asleep, she won’t see me leaving her, making it easier for her and me. And so I remove the protection of the gown and gloves and quietly slip away into the rainy afternoon, but my heart is filled with the sunshine she has given me, and her greatest gift to me ever, her smile.

Thursday, July 02, 2020


With all that is going on and my need to write, I have been neglecting one of my passions in life, drawing. If you do like I did and stop for a while, then you can lose the eye that you need to draw. There was a book called ‘THE NATURAL WAY TO DRAW’ by Nickelaides (sic) and what it taught was that you placed your pencil down on the paper and you follow the object with your eye, never looking at the paper. This of course led to some very disjointed drawing but very beautiful line movement and composition that took you out of the realm of reality.

So a couple of weeks ago I took out my easel and propped a drawing pad on it and began to draw. The first drawing was not a happy result for me, so I decided I had to go back to the basics, and instead of drawing right away, I studied. I looked at the details of the subject matter, the relationship or juxtaposition of one element to another, and then drew, and I had some good results!

Drawing is a lot like life in that if you want to understand, you need to study the whole element. You need to know what you are looking at an what you are searching for, the results should be understandable, and how you get there is not as important as getting the truth.

Listening to the news and reading the newspapers every day, so much is thrown at you that you just accept it and move on, instead of looking for the veracity of the so-called ‘facts’ as they are presented to you.

Recently I discussed with an avid Trump supporter, accusing Democrats of name-calling, claiming she was not a racist and very open-minded, then proceeded to criticize people for their beliefs and calling them homosexuals if they didn’t agree with her. She is a very stupid person, hypocritical and so badly racist, misinformed, and unable to think for, herself.

Fortunately for me, I can select my subject matter and conclude, and the best conclusion to draw is to stay away from stupid people.

Wednesday, July 01, 2020


With the restrictions of the pandemic, the day can go by slowly if you are not busy doing something. The need to pass time away is all-consuming and sad. To think we are wasting our lives sitting home and yet, so are we saving them by doing so.

One of the better things to do is to call people you haven’t heard from and catch up with their lives, it keeps you in the loop and it is something fresh.

For me, I’m lucky. I have a lot to do and no pressure to do it. I like to write and draw or create some new cooking ideas, something that rings in my mind as a recipe to try. I imagine things that would go well together and I do my thing. It is fun and I truly enjoy it.

I have found the YouTube is a boon for me as I can play any song I want from the past, see things I never saw before, and learn things. Every day I create a new joke with an Italian accent and a list of characters to go with the jokes. Using Italian words for punch lines and last names seems to be a big hit with the readers who, like me, are cooped up all day.

Most days I get unsolicited phone calls from companies, so I turn that into pleasure also. They ring, I answer and they ask for me. I tell them I’ll get him and place the receiver down while the guy or woman is asking: “Hello?” “Hello?” “Hello?”

Today being July 1st, it has been almost 4 months of quarantine, 4 months of staying at home, and wearing a mask. I visit parks and beaches more often now at a safe distance and have already had dinner out in a restaurant. It’s something a little closer to normalcy.

Tuesday, June 30, 2020


As I entered the ICU to see my daughter, she lay there in her hospital bed mouth agape and oxygen tubes running from her nose, it took me aback. Since March 7th, I have not seen her, not seen her beautiful smile, her laughing eyes, and her happy aura.

Lying there is did not move, did not acknowledge my presence, just tried to breathe and survive, one breath at a time, slow almost measured breaths.

There I stood, admiring her beautiful black hair, naturally curled framing her alabaster skin, a naturally beautiful woman just as she was a naturally beautiful child, once.

I don’t see the woman, middle-aged now, I still see the child, my child, the first child that bore the family last name.

When she was born at Southside Hospital in Bay Shore, I took Mom up to see her in the room where they kept the newborns. Mom looked at her pink bundle and being a grandmother several times already, she said: “This is the first Del Broccolo baby!” It hadn’t occurred to me but she was right, the other grandchildren were from her daughters, this one carried the family name.

After 48 years of life, mostly sweet but challenged, she is facing another set of rules that her frail body must follow, ones that say can’t feel well, you can’t live normally, nor can you eat like others or understand what is happening, you must suffer.

So, I visited her in her hospital world, and she didn’t even know I was there. I couldn’t wait to see her, after all, March 7th is a long time ago to miss someone you love.

Monday, June 29, 2020


Do you know how old you are? Ask.
“Does it seem that most people causing violence and tearing down history went through school during the Obama Administration?”

The above is the question of the day. I think I should start a blog called ‘THE QUESTION OF THE DAY’ and we can all profit from the wisdom we gather from it daily. Maybe we could also have a ‘BEST OF THE YEAR’ question, or better still, once a month and at the end of the year we all vote on the best!

Now, I may be wrong but I suspect that the genius posting this question above on FACEBOOK may be a FOX Newsreader or maybe even Sean Hannity himself. Without a doubt, he is a ‘conservative’ red-blooded and patriotic American, who believes in all the American values the Orange Plague in the White House believes in.
I mean, how American can you get when you want to end immigration, to embrace COVID-19, know that Black lives won’t matter if we can get more guns in our hands, and oh what fun to watch those little kids being sent back to their native lands without their parents, fear and badly treated separated long ago by our genius POTUS. That wall? How is progress? We get enough money from the Mexicans yet to pay for it? Probably they will benefit from the wall as they open little concessions that sell small American flags, with souvenir photos of POTUS and a greeting that says: “HOLA AMIGOS! ENTER TEXAS POR DOS PESOS UNDER THE FAMOUS GRINGO WALL, AND GRACIAS SENOR PRESIDENTE TRUMP”

But, getting back to the question: “Does it seem that most people causing violence and tearing down history went through school during the Obama Administration?” This is what is the result of reading to people who have never been to school with their ears, eyes, and minds opened. The question implies a lie, it makes assumptions, and to qualify to be posted by the particular individual who did post it, be stupid.

In response to the question, and to help “Make America Great Again” here is something to think about, I hope someone can read it to him:

Yes, this is Obama's fault. I have checked them all as I know you have and their school records indicate they went to school during Obama's administration! Thank goodness you mentioned it!
Sean Hanitty: helped make America sound stupid

Sunday, June 28, 2020


I have been reading postings by people that seem to ascribe to the idea that everything is a hoax, a conspiracy, or a deep-rooted plot to deceive and subvert life in America.

I read some of the garbage put out and I can’t help but think that these are people who are too lazy to think for themselves: that if you label something a hoax or conspiracy you don’t need to investigate it. Just copy a link and presto, you have ‘facts’ to spread to show the world how well-read you are, how deep you can be. After all is said and done, copying a half-baked idea and posting the link is hard work. Welcome to the Valley of the Stupid!

Speaking of the Valley of the Stupid, have you caught the latest POTUS campaign for president ad? It
touches on what the orange imbecile claims are Biden’s fault, the granting of a most favored status for China, the loss of 50,000 jobs, and the closing of factories that led to unemployment! The very issues we have today, all due to the Orange Stupid we call POTUS.

It seems that the ad reminds us in part of the current state of affairs in this country, just add a pandemic and you have it. I have a feeling this is not what the jackass should be selling. But then again, what ideas he has if God forbid it, he wins re-election? He has not shown us anything new, just stupid. He avoided that question when his lapdog, Sean Hannity asked about it.

As this crisis of a virus, coupled with the crises of lack of national leadership become a confluence of dark and stark reality. This country is in deep crisis, as the amount of Covid-19 cases rises while all of Europe is decreasing, you wonder how long we must deal with the idiot and the likes of Bitch McConnell and Linseed Graham? And if someone removes the moron and Pence becomes in charge, will he walk back his ass-kissing praise? The leadership of our ‘President’ has contained the virus!!!!!!

Saturday, June 27, 2020


It was so long ago that it happened, and as I walked to his gravesite I paused for a moment and read some of the headstone dates that defined lives lived so long ago. I particularly try not to read them for I am afraid I will find one or two that indicate an infant under the grass beneath the stones. A life not lived is life not all, and children need to live. It still grabs me by the throat when I do, and a little sadness swells in the heart as I imagine the poor parent’s pain of such an occurrence.

This past Father’s Day I made my usual pilgrimage to his place of rest. His birthday and anniversary are the other days for sure I will visit, and when I visit Mom and Dad or my in-laws, or my brothers-in-law, I stop by and I talk to him. Then a sudden stillness hits, my mind retreats to the day he was born, the day he started to walk, the days he smiled, all the days of his young life, only to be terminated too soon, and I ask myself: why? I know that I will never forget him, that he is alive in my heart and soul and right now, he is helping me see my way through another child in crises, my daughter Ellen.

In the middle of the night our home phone rang, I didn’t hear it but my wife did. She answered and quietly dressed as she made her way to the hospital where my wife was once again, like she always is, by a child of hers in need. When I awoke from my sleep I showered and dressed then went downstairs to begin my day. There was a note sitting on my chair, and I knew immediately that something once again was wrong, one of my children was in trouble and mamma was there for the child.

Her note explained that only one of us could go to the hospital because of restrictions, only one of us could be there to assure our child that no matter what happens, we will be there, and once again, some part of us will be taken away, bit by bit, until someday there will be nothing left for us to give.

We don’t know what is wrong with my daughter, her blood pressure is way down and she is vomiting, other issues need to be addressed and we won’t know anything until probably, tomorrow. Pray for her.