The coronavirus pandemic has changed our everyday life, but it doesn't need to change who we are. So, in addition to our ongoing coverage of the coronavirus, OnMilwaukee will continue to report on cool, fun, inspiring and strange stories from our city and beyond. Stay safe, stay healthy, stay informed and stay joyful. We're all in this together. #InThisTogetherMKE
In the past couple days, I find myself (subconsciously?) focusing on the positive.
Like yesterday, I shared this bit of news, that makes me proud, though I'm keeping quiet the names of those involved because I don't think they're in it for the publicity. And that's also what makes them good people in tough times.
In tough times, good people stand up. Last week I learned of a Bay View tavern landlord who has told the tenant who leases the bar to skip paying rent in April. #inthistogethermke — Bobby Tanzilo (@BobbyOnMKEcom) March 23, 2020
Then today, while walking the dog, I stopped to check out the wares at a Little Free Library in a neighborhood near mine. I was seeking some unexpected gem to read but instead found this...
While the world is hoarding toilet paper, this good person is willing to just stick a fresh roll right out there for anyone to take, along with some food items and, of course, reading material.
What we do doesn't have to be outsized. It can be a simple gesture. A hand extended to a friend, a roll of toilet paper and a bottle of chocolate sauce in a little free library, or even some simple words of encouragement to say we're not out there all alone.
Out on a daily run the other day, I was pleased to look down and find this positive message elaborately chalked onto a Pasadena neighborhood sidewalk in Tosa ...
... I know it wasn't meant only for me, but it was meant, at least in part for me, even though I don't know the artist.
I hope that you and I can be like these folks: good people in tough times. Because, it's true that we're all #inthistogethermke
Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.
He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.
With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in an episode of TV's "Party of Five," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.
He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for OnMilwaukee.com and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.
In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area.
He can be heard weekly on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories.