Category Archives: Family

Teaching Life Lessons is What it’s All About

Kudos to everyone who packed the house in support of our 12 Ladies of Christmas Holiday Show at Chicago’s Two Hearted Queen, and thank you to the very funny and very talented performers who donated their time and energy to make it an awesome event!

As your host/producer who always appreciates the opportunity to impact the lives of youngsters – as well as anyone else who’s open to it – the best part of the night took place right before our raffle drawing, while teaching young Nathan the proper way to shake hands.

Like the ancient proverb says: give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime. So take heed and rid yourself of that dead fish handshake!

And don’t forget your daily workout. Peace – R

12 Ladies of Christmas Holiday Show Tomorrow Night!

We’re gonna rock the house tomorrow night with these Royally talented women of comedy! If you’re anywhere near Chicago, bring your family for some awesome Stand-up, Storytelling and cool Christmas Caroling. Not to mention a fine solo performance from Violinist Emma Smoler!

Saturday, December 12th from 5-7pm at Two Hearted Queen. Hope to see you there – R

12LadiesOfChristmasHoildayShow2HQ

 

Rockin’ Chicago…First 50 Days

Great weather, tons of Yoga, a new talent agency and my own weekly showcase in the first 50 days. What more could I ask from America’s third largest city? I suppose a date with Katy Perry is the veritable cherry on top (no pun intended), but other than that, I’m rockin’ Chicago!

Hope you’re rockin’ your world wherever you are, and here’s a quick update since I arrived in the Windy City only 50 days ago:

  1. Signed with BMG Talent and auditioning for film & TV.
  2. Hosting a monthly comedy & talent showcase at Two Hearted Queen the 2nd Saturday of each month.
  3. Taught 51 Yoga classes and love my new home at Chicago’s #1 fitness community, Chicago Athletic Clubs. Come check-out any of our 9 locations around town and take my Yoga class sometime…we’re awesome!
  4. Found a new apartment in the lovely confines of Lincoln Park – 1 mile from the free Lincoln Park Zoo.
  5. Made a quick trip back East to visit family and friends and to watch my oldest nephew play baseball for my alma mater, The University of Pennsylvania.

Keep pursing your passion and Happy Halloween everyone…and don’t forget your daily workouts – they do wonders to fight those aging affects of good old Father Time! Peace – R

Tola Talks RIP & TIME Magazine’s Top 10 Gadgets of 2014

Tola Talks about two new weight loss products plus reviews TIME magazine’s Top 10 Gadgets of 2014. Rich also gives a special RIP shout-out to his Aunt Joanie, who passed away peacefully last night. Weekdays on youtube.com/tolatalks. All social: @richtola

Tola Talks w/ Motivational Speaker & Attorney Paul Finizio

 

Tola Talks about daring descents in outer space to land on a comet speeding at 35,000 MPH, baby elephants in Zambia surviving a 14-lion attack, RIP tributes to Mrs. Wolowitz (Carol Ann Susi) of The Big Bang Theory and Big Bank Hank (Henry Jackson) of the Sugar Hill Gang, billionaire booty calls for Kim Kardashian West, and Happy 30th Anniversary to the Queen of Pop, Madonna, for her Live a Virgin album of 1984. On Whatever Wednesdays, Rich also talks with attorney and motivational speaker, Paul Finizio about “Evolving and not Revolving” plus the importance of family as well as preserving and promoting Italian culture to kids in Florida.

Watch weekdays on youtube.com/tolatalks.

Gone But Certainly Not Forgotten

With the recent passing of Dr. Jerry Buss, the legendary owner of the Los Angeles Lakers, I’ve been reflecting on the importance of remembering loved ones who may be gone but certainly not forgotten.

Like my Uncle Mickey who left us in 2003. Also know as Dr. Cook by his WWII comrades, I fondly remember our weekly talks and brisk walks around the nursing home where he spent his final days.

And although he suffered from an unsympathetic Alzheimer’s disease that made him progressively distant each time I visited, Uncle Mickey remained ever so sweet, benevolent and respectful to everyone he met. Not to mention his charming old school ways – he wore a three piece suit every single day until he could no longer dress himself – and his school-boy crush on Avril Lavigne!

Little did I know that 10 years later I would find this poem I wrote for him the day he passed:

Ode to Mickey

Sitting in my chair, bent head held low,
Oh what I’ve seen, from this window seat row

This is my story, no fear for me now,
Can’t wait for my walks, with my nephew so proud

Cold wars, New York terror, amazing Ali,
Just like my true brethren, please let me be me

Hold onto the past, try not to be seen,
Smile time for my chats, with sweet Avril Lavigne

Nobody can hear me, I’m in the abyss,
What did I do, what in life did I miss

This world did I change, like the high rolling seas,
No chance for me now, against this ugly disease

But worry none friends, fight hard, freedom ring,
Keep faith til the end, cause in life we’re all Kings.

RIP Uncle Mickey (and Dr. Buss)…I’ll always remember you! – R