Neil Diamond sang to me last night. It was an oohlala moment for sure and then poof, he was gone in a flash! Whisked out the back door like an abracadabra trick in front of thousands of people on a cold Kansas City night. Singing men are like carnivals that come once a year and then disappear by Sunday morning church services. Pinch me, it feels like a dream. Neil's faith is a big presence. Growing up in Brooklyn was tough so he knows the heart of a street kid and the beauty of a flower that can bloom in a crack of concrete. I'll have to add him to my list of pretend boyfriends. www.neildiamond.com
Cinderella moments require fairy godmothers, sometimes you get two of them. One is about six foot four with the looks of a hardened gangster who's been around. His name is Richard Tripp but he's a gentle giant who is an advocate and front line man for the homeless in Kansas City. (www.coppinc.com) It was funny how excited Richard was when Neil Diamond donated 100 tickets for Richard and his friends, so he called Mrs. G for a little pondering. "Why would Neil do this, how did he find out about me?" he questioned. Mrs. G, another fairy godmother, had to remind him of the recent event they pulled off. Twice a year, Richard hosts a party for the homeless with food, gifts and song. There are clothes,shoes and toys packed sky high that are free for the taking. Mrs. G (Sandra Ghosheh, shh! she likes to be in disguise) gets 500 pies to be donated, books the musicans, rents tents with heaters and the list goes on. There were holes in the walls the size of small cats which made Mrs. G's bones hurt but she stayed to the very end and took one of the mentally challenged men to a shelter who had a fever.
"Ok then, I'll just take 50 of the tickets," Richard said, "but I want you to give your little red headed friend some." It didn't click for a minute since I thought I was a blond, but who cares, free Neil Diamond tickets, I'm a redhead! Unfortunately, Mrs. G caught bronchitis that turned into asthma and had to stay home.
Neil started talking about the homes he's building in Houston, Texas with all of the proceeds from the sales of shirts, hats, etc. Then he sang, wow, to the man upstairs he sings. Hold up your hand, do it for Him. "Do what you can, do what you can!" Neil shouted. I'm thinking about Richard denying himself 50 tickets, how I cringed when my five friends made a toast in my honor and that Mrs. G was home alone. Mary had walked with a knee injury to make our food reservations. Carol drove the others to Crown Center. Small acts of love made the event successful which meant we all pull rabbits out of hats. It was magic, pure magic! I can't wait until next year.