Charlie's Books

Charlie's Books
Buon Giorno, Amici!

Our motto ...

Leave the (political) party. Take the cannoli.

"It always seems impossible until it's done." Nelson Mandela

Right now 6 Stella crime novels are available on Kindle for just $.99 ... Eddie's World has been reprinted and is also available from Stark House Press (Gat Books).

Monday, September 13, 2010

The Wedding ...


And here they are for the first (foist) time as Mr. and Mrs. Charles (not Charlie) Stella ...

Mr. and Mrs. Stella dancing to their song (I’m Yours):

The best man speech background: this is required reading, amici. A few of the things I left out of the brief bio of my son Charles the other day ... he is a neat freak of the first order (obsessively so) ... the wedding gift bag at the hotel had a small bottle of hand cleanser in it ... he used toothpicks to eat snacks so as not to get his fingers dirty ... he alphabetizes EVERYTHING (he once dog sat for us and when we came home, our DVDs were in Alpha order -- we couldn’t find anything) ... he and his brother had some epic basketball games in front of our house on Long Island (you could hear them arguing over fouls in Brooklyn), etc.

Some of the Best Man Speech (which we all LOVED):

This was a great time, amici ... and even the drive down to Delaware with Don Corleone (my mommy) was fun (while we're on I-95 South, the Jersey turnpike) Mom says: “Sonny, I have the directions right here. Franny (her sister, Zizi Fran) gave them to me. You take I-95 South to I-95 North.”

“Ma, think about what you just said.”

“Here (she waves the directions at me), stupid ass, you take I-95 South to I-95 North.”

“Look over there, ma. See those cars going the other way? That’s I-95 North. You want me to wait until they merge somewhere and we have a head-on collision or should I just make a U-turn at 80 miles an hour?”

Oy vey ... I had to look over a few times. I was driving my mommy but thinking: Is this Doc in a chubby suit?

Some more pictures from the big night ...

Charles' grandparents made the trip from the far reaches of Long Island and both were in wheel chairs. This was very special for everybody. All three of his remaining grandparents are in their 80’s and have health issues ... but they were all there (and told me they wouldn't have missed it for the world). A huge Bravo to all of them!

Bill & Florence Schreuder, Aunt Linda and the mother of the groom, Theresa ...

Charles and Dustin and their friends from their Starrett City and Port Washington days ...

Charles & Alex (wearing the Moonachie Giants shirt) ... Alex served 16 months in both Iraq & Afghanistan so give it up for him. That's Charles telling the world on Facebook what he's just ordered for breakfast (his brother wasn't kidding) ...

A few more of that special couple ... Leslie and Charles Stella

A pair of meatballs (one much prettier (Nicole) than the other (her dopey father))

The ugly & the beautiful one (Ann Marie) ... those blue eyes were sparkling big time ...

A few of the boys in my room (after we closed the bar) finishing off the Chivas Blue (compliments of the Godmother and her family) ... momma mia, did we drink deep.

Amici: I never busted so many buttons in one night. All three Stella brats had me crying with pride at several points during the night. Those who know me well, know I’m a big mush when it comes to this stuff. Watching these three as adults who’ve done so much more than I ever dreamed so soon was nothing short of humbling. Their entire family (both sides of their family) played huge rolls in the process and although their aunt Del wasn’t there, her long time partner, Aunt Judith was ... and while Momma Stella broke up a few times during the blessing she read before dinner, we all know it was because her daughter (my sister) wasn’t there ... but we’re sure she was watching over all of us. What she did for my kids was huge.

Friends from both my sons’ past (both from Starrett City and Port Washington) were there and what great adults (and dancers) they all turned out to be. Here’s to them, a GREAT group of loyal friends who made the trip to Delaware and were the life of the party. It was wonderful seeing these gals and pals again ... truly wonderful.

Sometimes it does take a village, amici ... and these three (my three) are proof of it. Between the friends they made through the years and the family support that was there at every turn, the Stella brats were always surrounded with love. I kept thinking about a few wisecracks I’d heard over the years about “my kids growing up in Starrett City” ... like I told my wife several times over the weekend ... I guess they did pretty good, those kids from Starrett City ...

Here’s to all of them ... the kids from Brooklyn & Port Washington & Albany and Charles’ friends from graduate school (what nice young adults I met on the bus back to the hotel after the ceremony) and his job at Goldman Sachs and everyone who has played a role in my three kids’ wonderful and always entertaining lives ... the Stella family thanks you all ... big time.

And to my kids ... yous are the bestist ... ever.

—the Phat Dad