Saturday, September 12, 2009

Surprise ending to author's program

Claire during a quieter moment at the
booksigning: What is this contraption, Pop?

UPDATE: The customer mentioned below contacted River Lights to express her embarrassment for disrupting the proceedings. Fortunately, she reported that she was released from the hospital the day after the incident and was home. Good news!

The first booksigning event since release of my book Ray Schalk: A Baseball Biography took place Friday night at River Lights bookstore in Dubuque, as scheduled.

What wasn't scheduled was the abrupt ending to the author's program, during which I read a couple of short passages and started the Q&A portion. Just as I started to answer Lee Simon's question about what more I learned about the Black Sox scandal, an elderly woman in the front room took ill. She seemed to lose consciousness and then became nauseated. An ambulance was summoned, and quickly the Dubuque Fire Department crew, stationed just a few blocks away, was on the spot and transporting her for medical attention.

Thus ended the Q&A.

No word on her condition. Unfortunately, I don't her name.

Claire and Lise showed up their parents just as the ambulance was pulling away. Once things returned quieted down, I visited with a few more baseball fans for another hour or so.

Early arrivals were Tom and Paula Michel, who came from Waverly, about 100 miles away. Paula's family, from Farmersville, Ill., knew Ray Schalk. In fact, Paula's brother received a uniform from the Hall of Famer.

Anyway, it was a booksigning I'll not soon forget.

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