Google+

Before I Forget

 

Before I Forget
Love, Hope, Help and Acceptance in Our Fight against Alzheimer’s

by B. Smith and Dan Gasby

Harmony Books

Hardcover, $25.00

336 pages

ISBN: 978-0-553-44712-5

Book Review by Kam Williams

“Restaurateur, magazine publisher, celebrity chef and nationally-known lifestyle maven B. Smith is struggling at 66 with a tag she never expected to add to that string: Alzheimer’s Before I Forget, Love, Hope, Help and Acceptance in Our Fight against Alzheimer's, B. Smith and Dan Gasby, Book Review by Kam Williamspatient… Part memoir, part caregiver’s guide, this work is a unique entry on the Alzheimer’s shelf.

Crafted in short chapters that interweave [B. and husband Dan’s] narrative with practical and helpful advice, readers learn about dealing with the day-to-day challenges of Alzheimer’s, family realities and tensions, ways of coping, and coming research that may tip the scale, as well as lessons learned along the way.

At its heart, Before I Forget is a love story illuminating a love of family, life and hope.”

— Excerpted from the Bookjacket

Barbara Elaine Smith was born on August 24, 1949 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to Florence and William, a maid and a steelworker, respectively. The darling, little daughter would grow up to do her parents proud, embarking on a series of phenomenally-successful professional careers.

She started out as a model, becoming the first African-American to grace the cover of Mademoiselle. The talented Renaissance woman parlayed that success into endorsement deals and her own nationally-syndicated TV show, “B. Smith with Style.”

  She would also launch her own product line, publish a magazine and several cookbooks, and open restaurants in Manhattan, Washington, DC and out on Sag Harbor. With the help of her husband, B. built such a formidable business empire that she became widely known as “The Black Martha Stewart.”    

Unfortunately, upon consulting a doctor a couple of years ago because of a nagging forgetfulness, she received the devastating diagnosis of early onset Alzheimer’s. Although she and Dan have since reordered their priorities,  the two have steadfastly refused to allow the disease to either crush their spirits or diminish their love for each other. As B. puts it, “I’m still myself. I just can’t remember things as well as I once did.”       

In “Before I Forget,” she and Dan share their inspirational message of hope while issuing a rallying a cry to the African-American community which suffers from Alzheimer’s at over twice the rate of whites. The autobiography primarily focuses on the last five years of B.’s life, although it does devote a few chapters to earlier periods, including her childhood in Pennsylvania.

However, the thrust of the book is to kickstart a frank conversation about Alzheimer’s from recognizing the warning signs, to identifying its stages, to reciting lesson’s learned thus far. Above all, the memoir is a reaffirmation of a couple’s undying love, as evidenced by Dan’s waxing romantic with, “I am so grateful for the honor and pleasure of your company, and for the privilege of sharing your life.”

To order a copy of Before I Forget, visit: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0553447122/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20

Entertainment

Against-the-Odds Documentary Chronicles the Inspirational Ascension of Youtube Singing Sensation

  Presenting Princess Shaw Film Review by Kam Williams Against-the-Odds Documentary Chronicles the Inspirational Ascension of Youtube Singing Sensation By day, Samantha Montgomery cared for the elderly as an orderly in a New Orleans old folks home. After hours, however, the aspiring singer/songwriter spent most of her free time pursuing her elusive dream of superstardom. As Princess Shaw,  she would perform solo in local clubs on open mic nights, mostly in front … [Read More its Good for You...]

Books

From #Black Lives Matter to Black Liberation

  From #Black Lives Matter to Black Liberation by Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor Haymarket Books Paperback, $17.95 286 pages ISBN: 978-1-60846-562-0 Book Review by Kam Williams “The eruption of mass protests in the wake of the police murders of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and Eric Garner in New York City have challenged the impunity with which officers of the law carry out violence against Black people and punctured the illusion of a postracial America. The … [Read More its Good for You...]

Art

ART EXHIBITION: 150 Years After The Civil War

  Cynthia Groya 150 Years After The Civil War: A Contemporary Perspective January 10 - March 6, 2016 Artist's Reception: Sunday, January 24, 3:00 - 5:00 pm Nassau Club 6 Mercer Street  Princeton, NJ 08540 The ideas reflected in Groya's paintings express a conversation about struggle for equal rights in our culture, in our time. The origin of this struggle can be traced to The Civil War in our country, which ended 150 years ago. The … [Read More its Good for You...]

Real Estate

Tips for Building a Farm Pond

  Tips for Building a Farm Pond By Burt Carey Growing up in rural Northern California, my two brothers and I were blessed to have a down-the-road neighbor who allowed us to fish in his farm pond just about anytime we wanted. It came to be known to us as Jack’s Lake. The pond sat across a fallow cattle pasture at the bottom of a natural gully that collected rainwater from hundreds of surrounding acres. Jack’s Lake stretched nearly a quarter-mile north to south … [Read More its Good for You...]

Lifestyle

Eco-Friendly Entrepreneurs

  Eco-Friendly Entrepreneurs by Amy Lignor   Depending on who you talk to in the big, old U.S. of A. as of late, when it comes to the political future of our country the outlook is hazy at best. Is big business going to come back full-force if a huge businessman takes the helm of President? Not likely. As statistics show, the first step in Trump’s life is what is coming on full-force: entrepreneurs. Whether these numbers are climbing because of politics … [Read More it Good for You...]

Outdoors

Yamaha Propeller Selector, Endless Propeller Solutions

  Yamaha Propeller Selector, Endless Propeller Solutions   The Yamaha Propeller selection page on Yamaha’s webpage is a great tool for every boat owner as a tool not only to make sure the correct prop is on their boat but also gives the ability and freedom to change the prop with ease, depending on the application. Everyone knows the equipment used for bass fishing is not the same for chasing tuna offshore, and the same logic applies to selecting a prop. At … [Read More its Good for You...]

Sports

Braves Fire Manager Fredi Gonzalez

  Braves Fire Manager Fredi Gonzalez By Burt Carey   Just 37 games into the 2016 season, the Atlanta Braves fired manager Fredi Gonzalez on Tuesday amidst the ballclub’s slowest start in its history. Gonzalez took over as the Braves manager in 2010 following the retirement of Bobby Cox. He led the Braves to three consecutive winning seasons, including 94- and 96-win seasons in 2012 and 2013, but couldn’t overcome the club’s dismal finish in 2015 and … [Read More its Good for You...]

Business

Small Brand – Huge Idea

  Small Brand - Huge Idea by Amy Lignor   Big business will consistently state that although they are trying to make their products more environmentally safe, or trying to become more eco-friendly, the proof they are doing so remains slim to none. To be fair, there are various industries, such as the lodging industry, that are doing a great deal to alter their services and products to better meet a “greener” world. Everything from using recycled … [Read More its Good for You...]

Travel

TSA Under Fire for Long Airport Lines

  TSA Under Fire for Long Airport Lines By Burt Carey From New York to Chicago to Atlanta and other major U.S. cities, airport travelers have been complaining for weeks about delays and long lines at security checkpoints. On Friday Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson tried to quell the unrest, announcing that the beleaguered Transportation Security Administration would be adding hundreds of front-line screeners at the nation’s busiest airports. TSA … [Read More its Good for You...]

Google+