Thursday, August 1, 2013
Always Looking Up: The Adventures of an Incurable Optimist by Michael J. Fox
Fox is funny and describes the Parkinson's symptoms humorously and in a self-deprecating way such as being like a "human whirligig" or trying to listen to Barack O'bama while unsuccessfully controlling "arms wheeling like a board-game spin-arrow." He mentions Lance Armstrong, Katie Couric and others that already date the book. Fox touches a bit on the phases he went through when dealing with Parkinson's such as denial, hiding the problem, then moving forward with a positive attitude. He covers the politics of stem cell research and the roadblocks encountered with the Bush administration. I thought I'd like the chapter on "Faith" the least but it was actually interesting because it didn't deal with his disease so much as look at the inclusive and exclusive nature of religion in different denominations. Fox has no bias toward any particular one and I found his factual, honest look at religion somewhat interesting.
My favorite parts were the funny phrases he'd use describing his children. Again, I could relate to this working with kids and having a child of my own. He quips, "Kids are like Labrador retrievers - show them a car with the motor running and the back door open, and giving no thought to the destination, they'll scramble in and hang their head out the window in anticipation of the wind blowing back their hair and whipping the spit off their dangling tongues." You can't help but like this guy when you read his autobiography even if he lives in a world quite different from yours or mine.