Real Music & Real Estate . . .

Yiddishe Cup’s bandleader, Bert Stratton, is Klezmer Guy.
 

He knows about the band biz and – check this out – the real estate biz, too.
 

You may not care about the real estate biz. Hey, you may not care about the band biz. (See you.)
 

This is a blog with a gamy twist. It features tenants with snakes and skunks, and musicians with smoked fish in their pockets.
 

Stratton has written op-eds for the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Washington Post.


 
 

Category — Miscellaneous

MY CRIMINAL RECORD

I was out of my skull when I broke into boxcars, unloading Cutty Sark, golf balls and tires. I used tin snips that cut right through corrugated steel. This was a while ago. Now I’m retired and just watch TV. I have an intense appetite for the Indians — or whatever they’re called — and sausage and hash browns.

I’m lonely now with Corona-time. I never got married. A mistake. There was this chick in the 1970s who loved me, but I wasn’t ready. Schmuck — me. I joined the Marines and was in for six months. Semper Fidelis was plain bullshit to me. Latin bullshit. I quit.

You ever notice how Italians swear so much? It’s very big with them. If you’re Italian, you’re better than everybody else. You can be the biggest, dumbest fuck on two feet, but if you’re Italian, you’re it. I have enough spaghetti and wine in my veins to be Italian. The goddamn hot peppers, I can eat a mason jar full. But I’m not Italian, not by a long shot.

My family disowned me after Marion. A Jewish boy in the joint — me. Not kosher. I did three years there, then two in Chillicothe. I haven’t talked to my relatives in, I bet, 30 years. When I got out the last time, I made a clean slate of things. I sold stained glass to restaurants. Completely legit. But I didn’t like it, so I went back to stealing. The hardest part was carrying the loot. I was that good.

My biggest mistake? Quitting high school. I thought I knew more than the teachers. Schmuck — me, again. I hung out with the delinquents who stole cars. An old fat Jew — we called him the Eggman — ran the show.

I don’t have a dime to my name. I blew it all on cards, broads and racehorses. After a while, I couldn’t deal with the thickheaded Italians at the racetrack, so I got out. But not before I was broke. I love wieners and Coke. Love that combo. My best heist was when I pinched three cases of sausage from Red Barn. I didn’t fence it. I ate it all! I’m in menopause now — male menopause. The docs talk about it on TV. I love my flat-screen. Almost perfect. Just me and my TV.

Here’s my record:

NAME: JOSEPH A. MOSKOWITZ
ALIAS/NICKNAME: JOEY MOSCOW
DOB: 12-11-1953
FACIAL ODDITIES: UNK
FACIAL HAIR: GOATEE
SPEECH: POLITE
COMPLEXION: MED
MISSING BODY PARTS: UNK
GENERAL APPEARANCE: UNKEMPT
TEETH: UNK
SCAR/BIRTHMARK/MOLE: UNK
TATTOO: UNK
WT: 325
HGT: 5-8
ADDRESS: UNK
CONVIC: AGGRAV BURGLARY, LARCENY, KIDNAPPING, CRIMINAL TOOLS, GRAND LARCENY

[fake profile]

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July 8, 2020   5 Comments

THOSE ANTI-SEMITS!

My clarinet teacher, Harry Golub, was nicknamed the Bald Eagle. Harry was hairless. Howard Zuckerman, a student, gave Mr. Golub the nickname. Mr. Golub taught out of a South Euclid storefront. His dad ran a kosher butcher shop next door. Harry Golub owned the building. One of his better moves.

Zuckerman, like many junior high clarinetists, dropped out of private lessons around bar mitzvah time. I hung in through eleventh grade. During my high school years, Mr. Golub asked me how the clarinet dropouts were doing. I gave him some updates — so-and-so got straight A’s, so-and-so was on the tennis team.

Mr. Golub was often cranky because, for one thing, he didn’t get along with the music department at the high school. They wouldn’t buy instruments and sheet music from him, he claimed. Mr. Golub said the high school was in cahoots with another music store, the one out in goy land — Lyndhurst.

I occasionally ran into Mr. Golub years later at Yiddishe Cup gigs, and he was still railing against the school system. He said, “Those mumzers! Those anti-semits!” He had a point. It was a city (yidn) versus country (gentile) thing. Those gentiles in Lyndhurst were probably taken aback by the several thousand post-War Jews who moved into their farmland, built bungalows, studied hard (my friends did), and ate smelly salami. Mr. Golub, himself, ate Hebrew National sandwiches (from his dad’s kosher meat market) while giving lessons.


Here’s a story I wrote for today’s Cleveland Plain Dealer: “Peaceful enjoyment of the premises.”

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July 1, 2020   6 Comments

I LIKE BIRDING, FRACKING
AND KLEZMER

I grew up with a pair of binos around my neck. I lived near a park and saw vireos, cardinals and hawks. I got good at ID-ing birds by songs and calls. These days I tell my bandmates to check out birds on our road trips. Funk a Deli’s guitarist is always spotting hawks.

Confession:

I’ve never been on a birding vacation. Nobody wants to go with me. My wife doesn’t like the idea of walking slowly and craning her neck.

Another confession:

I like fracking. I’ve spent a lot of time in southeast Ohio, mostly around Marietta. There’s good birding and fracking there. The Ohio Valley is a micro-tropical climate. I rent a Hefner-style bachelor condo in Marietta. The condo has a big-screen TV, huge white couch and a ton of wine. The place comes furnished. I’m not too far from the marsh in back of Kroger, where I go for all my birding and grocery needs. Here’s a photo of me at rig 383 in northern Washington County, Ohio:

gas rig bert 5_25_14 rig 383 washington county ohio

[fake profile / real photo]

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June 24, 2020   2 Comments

COME THE REVOLUTION

I told my dad I couldn’t do pre-med because of the Revolution. How could I do eight years, minimum, of science and medicine during a revolution? My dad did not think I was nuts. (This was 1969.) He believed a revolution was coming, too. He read the papers and Newsweek, and followed Cronkite.

In Ann Arbor, the extremely radical Jesse James Gang splintered from the Students for a Democratic Society (SDS). The Jesse James Gang leaders were Diana Oughton, Bill Ayers and Jim Mellon. These gedolim wore work boots (J.C. Penney), wire rims, and were Hollywood handsome. These leaders were several years older than undergrads like me. These radical kids’ “maturity” made them seem a lot more worldly. Seven years older is a big deal when you’re 19. Wire rims, plus long hair, and you got some looks, at least outside of Ann Arbor. You could get “hassled.”

The leader of the U. of Michigan student government was Marty McLaughlin, who wore Oxford-cloth shirts and was handsome too, but high school-y.  (I should have been a fashion writer.) Meanwhile, the Jesse James Gang met in U. buildings and encouraged us to take it to the streets. Protestors threw rocks through store windows and carried NLF flags. An acquaintance, John Gettel, threw a rock through the Ann Arbor Bank. I was next to him. I was always “next to” somebody. I was Zelig, curious about revolution.  I was at Kent State the night before. I didn’t want a revolution — and still don’t — and I knew it wasn’t going to be televised, so I tried to be there.

A couple years after college I saw Gettel on a street corner in Cleveland, passing out leaflets for Lyndon LaRouche. Gettel and his girlfriend were in Cleveland on assignment, mingling with the working class. I was on my way to my job managing apartments. I honked, said hi, and got out of there, and went to my job with the working class, who by the way hated the hippies.

Donald “Ducks” Wirtanen, a Finn from the U.P. and a college acquaintance of mine, got his jaw broken in a fight outside Hill Auditorium. I don’t remember why. I went to Cobo Hall to protest George Wallace. The funny thing, George Wallace was a good speaker, other than he was a racist.

In 1968 the Michigan Daily endorsed Hubert Humphrey and was criticized by Morris R., another acquaintance, for not endorsing Eldridge Cleaver of the Peace and Freedom Party.

The revolution was over by the end of 1970. Diana Oughton got blown up in her bomb factory in Greenwich Village. All politics were personal . . . “But the Man Can’t Bust our Music!” (Columbia Records). Marketing schemes and inner peace. Co-opt me, baby. Ecology was the next big thing. Back to the land. I didn’t do very well in Organic Chemistry. I blame it on the Revolution.

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June 17, 2020   6 Comments

SMALL TOUGH JEWS

The small tough Jews at my high school were wrestlers, except for Reed Klein the gymnast. The school had no gymnastics team. Reed was a one-man team. He went on to the Ohio State gymnastics team. The other small tough Jews were Harry Kramer and Steve Gold. They wrestled in low weight classes, like 93 pounds and 103 pounds.

My wife dated a wrestler in high school. My younger son wrestled in middle school. Jack was small and, at most, semi-tough. The matches were primal — two or three minutes of animal behavior in a stinky windowless wrestling room. The matches were scary and scarring. And I was just watching.

I never wrestled, except in gym. I didn’t like singlets or other guys’ armpits. I didn’t like headlocks either, unless Bobo Brazil was giving one to Lord Layton and it was 1960.

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June 10, 2020   6 Comments

I’M SOCIALLY AWKWARD

I have a cottage by Lake Erie. Before coronavirus, I’d invite everybody over — friends from high school, musicians, my wife’s schoolteacher friends. People liked the lake.

Funny thing, in Cleveland few people live by the lake. For instance, Cleveland Heights is six miles from the lake. One guy came to my parties from Indiana. Jeff left Cleveland twenty years ago and returned just to see the lake. He liked to toke down on pot. Am I saying that right — “toke down on pot”? It’s been a while for me.

The water on the lake is rarely blue. It’s usually green. We drink beer until the lake turns blue. Then we play klezmer, “Louie Louie” and “Mustang Sally.” One guy, Dave, always wants to sing “Mustang Sally.” He’s in Thailand most of the time, thankfully. He goes over there for the girls, I think.

I wonder if anybody would show up at my parties if not for the beer and lake. I’m not a big draw. I’m taciturn to the extreme. I talk in a monotone like a depressive. Maybe they like my hot dogs. I get the best: Vienna. Also, I serve some veggie stuff. I wonder: What if I threw my next party in the Heights? Would anybody show up? I’m afraid to think about it.

[fake profile]

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June 3, 2020   3 Comments

A WHITER SHADE OF WHITE

Steve, an apartment painter, had more words for white than Jews have for fool. Steve talked about antique white, Navajo white, pearl white, bone white and white. [Fool in Yiddish: nar, shlemiel, shmendrik, shmegege, yold.]

“Oil or latex?” — that was the first question at Lakewood Paint and Wallpaper back in the day. Also: “Is Dutch Standard the same as Dutch Boy?” No, Dutch Standard was from Canton, Ohio. Dutch Boy is the nationally known subsidiary from Sherwin-Williams, Cleveland.

Bill, a paint salesman, made regular stops at Lakewood Paint. He told me to use an “alkyd” (oil). He cornered me and asked, “Are you a Yehudi?”

“Yes.”

“What are you doing over here?

“I’m working for my old man.”

“Four years of fun and games at college. Now look!” Bill said. “There are only two Yehudis at Dutch Standard. Me and another guy.”

Bill wandered the aisles of Cleveland paint stores in the 1970s. I traveled a similar circuit. Still do. The other day I paid a man for painting a stairway camel white, which is a Behr color from Home Depot. Lakewood Paint and Wallpaper is long gone.

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May 27, 2020   1 Comment

DON’T KOCK THE MONEY AWAY

The minute I landed at Palm Beach airport, my dad, Toby, hocked me about investments. On the drive from the airport to his condo, Toby would expound on the tremendous real estate growth in Florida. “This was a two-lane dirt road when we got here. Now it’s six lane.” Glades Road, Boca Raton, 1980s. With a bagel store on every other block.

We have Bagel Nosh in Cleveland too, Dad, and it’s crap! My parents watched the kids while my wife and I biked around the condo development, watching for golf cart X-ings. Toby said, “Whatever you do, don’t kock the money away.” Also, did I need a new car? And how about a bigger house? “You never ask for anything,” he said. My kids asked for stuff — swimming noodles. No problem. Every grandparent had a storage closet of noodles.

One grandpa — a friend of my dad — didn’t sleep well, so he did midnight bowling. The man owned a furniture store in Cleveland and worried a lot because his son was destroying the store, the man claimed. Another old-timer was Jackie Presser, who had a villa — a stand-alone house — unlike my folks’ pad which was an attached unit. Presser was the national president of the Teamsters and knew mobsters. In his later years, Presser moonlighted as a snitch for the FBI. His wife drove an antique car around the condo development.

My dad met Mel, a low-level municipal employee from the city of Sunrise, Florida. Mel needed a “few presents” for his inspectors. Mel inspected commercial properties for Sunrise, where my dad owned a small shopping-strip center. The shopping center was a just hobby for my dad’s — something to keep his brain cells firing between rounds of golf. Toby was always in let’s-make-a-deal mode.

Toby met Mel at Sambo’s, where Mel explained that presents meant $100 for each of his inspectors. Toby paid Mel — in a car, not in the restaurant. Mel said, “This is not for me. This is strictly for my inspectors.” Then Mel drove Toby to see vacant land. The city wanted a developer to put up a motel. The city would take a cut.

Toby sold his Sunrise strip center shortly after that. He didn’t cotton to the Florida heat, so to speak. He returned to golf with his high school buddies, and marveling at electric orange juice squeezers.

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May 20, 2020   2 Comments

MEDICAL STORY — GOOD NEWS

I used to go to Haber the Dermatologist. He didn’t like small talk. He carried a mole-zapping heat gun. He sizzled me a couple times and collected his check. Then I switched docs because Haber wasn’t taking my insurance anymore.

I wound up with a doctor who was very, very cautious. She saw a cyst on my head, which she wanted to get rid of — my cyst, not my head. She scheduled me for a seven-stitch deep dig. Not a quicky zap job. This was a “procedure,” in hospital jargon, but “surgery” to me.

The surgeon  — a specialist — didn’t look too seasoned. I said, “How old are you?” She answered, “Old enough to be your doctor.” I liked that. She offered a discount package: three stitches, and she’d go back in for more only if warranted down the road. A deal.

It was a benign cyst. I didn’t need any more work.

How’s that for an upbeat medical story?

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April 22, 2020   5 Comments

NO VISITORS

My last band gig was a month ago, March 15 — four days after the NBA and Tom Hanks canceled the world. The wedding was a gathering of 68 guests (I counted ’em) at the William Penn Hotel in Pittsburgh. Government guidelines back then were “no more than 100 people, por favor.” That changed the next day to “no more than 10, please.” The groom’s father had late-stage pancreatic cancer, so there was a certain urgency to the event. The rabbi showed up on a video screen. He wasn’t there. He was sick. A lot of people weren’t there. I, as the emcee, made four PSAs to wash hands.

My next-to-last gig was Purim, March 12, at a nursing home. As I left the gig, the administrators were posting signs: No Visitors. The other day a social worker from a nursing home called and told me about two recent deaths. I said, “From coronavirus?”

“No, from loneliness,” she said.

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April 15, 2020   1 Comment

INVESTMENT TIPS

In the early 2000s most everybody in the real estate biz was not hitting the long ball. But what was better? My late father, who was a stock broker for about six months in the 1950s, taught me the stock market was legalized gambling. John Bogle, former chairman of the Vanguard Group, said, “The investor in America sits at the bottom of the food chain.” You have to be lucky twice with stocks: when you buy and when you sell. In March 2009 the New York Times business-page headline was “Are We There Yet?” There meant the stock market’s bottom.

In March 2009 the price/earnings ratio was at its lowest in more than 20 years: 13. (Shiller trailing 10-year figure.) The worldwide P/E was even lower, down to 10. It was a good time to invest, but scary.

***

My Uncle Lou and Uncle Al drove a truck, delivering wholesale items to stores. They sold me a carton of baseball cards — 24 packs — at a deep discount. I immediately ripped open all the packs. I was 9. This investment was my first speculation. I got a lot of Humberto Robinsons (a nobody, an Indians relief pitcher) and no Mickey Mantles. Maybe my uncles were teaching me dollar-cost averaging: better to buy a pack a week (dollar-cost averaging) than go all in.

Am I ready to jump into the stock market again? No, I’m not scared enough yet.

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April 1, 2020   2 Comments

UNCLE BERT IN CONNECTICUT

I’ve been to two weddings in Middletown, Connecticut. How many have you been to? People told me to fly to Providence, Hartford, White Plains, Whatever. Middletown is hard to get to from Cleveland. Drive 10 hours? Not my thing.

One time I flew to LaGuardia and rented a car. Getting a rental from LaGuardia is a supreme hassle, with all the construction, and then driving up the interstate through Connecticut is no picnic either, because drivers on the East Coast either speed or crawl. And one time I took a train to New Haven from Manhattan, and then an Uber to Middletown. Also, rough, at least for a Midwestern guy.

The first wedding in Middletown was a cousin’s daughter. It was in a barn — a catering-hall barn with chandeliers and wooden decks. My second Middletown wedding was also in a barn — a different one. Simply, The Barns. Middletown must be wedding-barn central. (The second wedding was for the son of a childhood friend of mine.) I knew very few people at the second wedding. I met a guy who was a reporter, who hung out with me. He said, “Why didn’t you leave Cleveland?” Why did I stay in my hometown? Never leave? Good question. He followed with: “Why are you at this wedding?”

I said, “Because there are a lot of guys my age who aren’t here.” That’s why. I’m not dead. I wanted to show up.

After my friend’s kid’s wedding, a guest drove me back to the hotel, but the guest was so worried about driving at night, I offered to drive her car. She said her insurance wouldn’t cover me driving. On that 10-minute drive to the hotel, she slammed on her brakes several times and couldn’t read the road signs clearly. I saw the sign for “Portland” about 50 feet before she did. She then offered to drive me to LaGuardia the next day, but I opted for an Uber, which was expensive (about 1 1/2 hours).

My cousin doesn’t live in Middletown, and neither does my high school friend. I wonder if I have more Middletown barn weddings in me.

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March 11, 2020   4 Comments

I MOVED TO L.A.

I moved to L.A. 25 years ago today: February 19, 1995. I still don’t take the weather for granted. Everyday I wake up and say thank you, even if it’s only 50 degrees. I live near a gelato store, smoothie shop and three vegan restaurants. I can order a tofu bratwurst at 2 a.m.

Everyone here is in the industry. I live across the street from the “Shameless” guys. I’m not sure what that is. A TV show? A band? I started off by writing celebrity profiles for Us and People. I wrote for Wings. I wrote for Cheers. I wrote for Seinfeld. After Seinfeld shoots, we would hang at Jerry’s Famous Deli in Studio City. Jerry — Seinfeld, that is — once told me he liked working in L.A. because, since we had such long hours, he didn’t feel he was missing much, like he would have in New York.

I bought my house here in 2002. My sister from Cleveland is visiting me right now. She can’t believe my sitch — my weather, my cuisine, and my net worth. My bungalow, which would go for $100,000 in Cleveland, is worth a million.

My first couple years here I could barely make the rent nut, but I hustled. I never turned down a gig. Now I let the other guys hustle. Last week I invested $100,000 in a gangster love story. Rob, a friend — also from Cleveland — directed and wrote it. Hopefully, we’ll get it into Sundance. Then there’s Toronto. Even if the movie goes nowhere, so what. I didn’t refinance my house for this. The movie was shot in Cleveland. Rob gets great press back home: “hometown boy makes it in Hollywood.” Right now Rob needs about 30,000 Clevelanders to “like” his movie trailer. (Please search “Bloody Vista Boulevard” on Facebook and click “like.”)

Is it snowing in Cleve today?

[fake profile]

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February 19, 2020   3 Comments

HONOLULU OR CLEVELAND?

This month started out with incredible weather. On Saturday (Feb. 1) I decided to bike out to shul — the eastern branch of my shul, about four miles away. I mean, it was about 49 degrees and sunny. Also, I was attracted by the “light lunch” come-on in the temple bulletin. Then, just as I was about to get on my bike, a friend texted me and asked if I wanted to go to the Chabad shteibel in Cleveland Heights for cholent. That was tempting, but not enough exercise. Too close. So I scheduled the cholent shabbes for later this month.

At my shul, the sermon was about how you can’t pick your family, like you do your friends, so it’s a good idea to hang with family to get different perspectives. Next, the rabbi announced the light lunch. He said — and this is tragic — “fish sticks and french fries.” I biked to Pepper Pike for this? I was expecting humus, tuna fish, egg salad. Fish sticks? What? Who?

Give it up, Bert.

My point here, I biked on Feb. 1. That was the first time I’ve biked in Cleveland in February. There was a trace of snow on the bike path — an inch or so in places  — so I took my time. I didn’t want to skid out and bruise another rib. The following day, Sunday Feb. 2, was even warmer, and less snow on the ground. So I biked out to shul again, except not to pray, just to bike. I didn’t go in the shul.

Monday was even better weather. One of my kids was in Hawaii that day, and that kid had nothing on me. Finally, yesterday stunk weather-wise. Irwin Weinberger and I played “You Are My Sunshine” at a nursing-home gig, but no sun came out. And today is nothing to write home about. But those first three days of February were unforgettable.

lei away bike 2020

 

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February 5, 2020   5 Comments

MISADVENTURE TRAVELING

I blame my cousin Brian. He’s a 59-year-old mountain biker who posts Facebook clips of himself biking over streams and rocks. So I tried mountain biking in Mexico. There are no laws there. You can do whatever you want. I did off-road level-3 stuff, and I wound up on my side. I bruised my ribs. Not broken, not fractured. Just bruised. Or at least I think so. I’m not going to get an X-ray to find out. I can breathe. It’s a little hard to play clarinet, but I can do it. I think I’ll be OK in a month or so.

I’m through with misadventure traveling. I need to remember that. I shouted “I fell, Teddy!” but my son was far ahead of me, as was the guide. Mexico — do your own thing. Also, I couldn’t yell too loudly because I had the wind  knocked out of me. It could have been worse, yes, I know. I was wearing a puffy-down jacket, which made for good padding.

My cousin Brian is a daredevil. I’ve never been a daredevil. Also, Brian is 10 years younger than me. I should cool it. I will. No more white-water rafting, zip-lining, mountain biking, moped rental, scuba, or horseback riding. In fact I’m not getting out of bed again, on purpose.

Sneezing is the worst (for sore ribs). You know what I’m talking about.

P.S. No sympathy cards, please. I’m 90 percent better.

bike fall mexico

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January 22, 2020   5 Comments

WHATEVER HAPPENED TO PUTT PUTT?

My son Teddy had his birthday party at Putt-Putt on Northfield Road in 1990. I think that’s the last time I played Putt-Putt — official Putt-Putt. There are only 23 Putt-Putt courses in the United States.

There was a Chinese miniature golf course on Libby Road at Broadway Avenue. It had a Buddha that went up and down. My high school friends and I couldn’t get enough of that course.

Arnold Palmer Miniature Golf  . . .  Just had to say that.

I would like to live long enough to play Putt-Putt with my grandchildren. First, I need grandchildren. I want to stay healthy enough to bend down and pick up the ball. That’s the hardest part of miniature golf.

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January 1, 2020   3 Comments

11 HEALTH TIPS FOR CHANUKAH

1. Eat your latkes and shut up.

2. Start every day by singing “The Star-Spangled Banner.”  The song begins with a major triad, 5-3-1, which will straighten your spine.

3. Prick yourself, and if your blood isn’t bright red, eat potato chips — any brand — for the salt.

4. Eat sardines, lightly smoked, in oil. Make sure the can says “Chanukah oil.”

5. You need a gum graft. Get it now.

6. Don’t knock Miller Lite. It does the job.

7. Visit a pawn shop and buy an amp.

8. [For Catholics only. Remember, sainthood is hard to prove, so document everything. Video on.]

9. Eat dark chocolate. It’ll help your stomach absorb the flavonoids. And make sure your gelt is Belgian.

10. Gamble more. Try craps. Craps is more fun than dreidl.

11. Try Arby’s Horsy Sauce on salads, fish, latkes and fries. It’s better for you than tomato sauce.

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December 25, 2019   4 Comments

TWO BERTS AT CORKY & LENNY’S

I had lunch at Corky & Lenny’s with Bert Dragin, the owner of a local furniture store chain. He was looking for a movie script. This was in 1980. He said, “I’ve got money. Everybody will talk to me in L.A. Right now I have something in the Best of the New York Erotic Film Festival.” He asked if I would consider writing a screenplay about a fire at a gay nightclub in Atlanta. Not my thing, I told him.

Bert Dragin eventually sold his business and moved to Hollywood. He produced Suburbia (1983) and directed Summer Camp Nightmare (1987) and Twice Dead (1988). Dragin said, “You heard of Erotic Salad? It’s got a soft-X rating.” I said no.

This was my Hollywood lunch. The meeting was Hollywood-style (like kosher-style) because it was not actually in Hollywood, but Dragin did run a tab at C&Ls. That was pure Hollywood.

—-

Footnotes: The lunch was at C&L’s Cedar Center, not the “new” C&L’s. “Run a tab” means Dragin didn’t have to pull out his credit card or cash every time he ate at the restaurant.

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December 18, 2019   2 Comments

MY HOUSE SHOOK

I told the plumber to check out a rusted-out waste stack in my basement. He cut the pipe in half and said, “Oops, it’s a support post.” My freaking house shook! This plumber was stupid, but I was, too, for telling him it was a waste stack when it was, in fact, a support post. The plumber said he’d take away the old support-post pipe, which he cut into two 30-pound cast-iron sections. Easier to move. But he left the stuff.

So I took the pipes to the tree lawn. No takers. Then I brought them back and called the city. I babysat the pipes for three week. The city guy said, “Put them out a day early this time, and they’ll be gone. Scrappers will take them.” I put the pipes out again.

Scrappers didn’t take them. I arranged with the city to take the pipes with a special pick-up. That happened. One less peeve.

And by the way, I got a new support post, so my house doesn’t shake now.

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November 20, 2019   1 Comment

FIND THIS GUY

I lost my wallet and got it back quickly. I left the wallet on a bike path. Beachwood cops called.

I tried to give the finder a reward. I got his number from the cops. But the finder wouldn’t answer his phone. The police said he was a 47-year-old man from Woodmere, Ohio. He supposedly had told the cops, “If I lost my wallet, this is what I’d want.”

Nothing was taken from the wallet. The man deserved something. Matthew Lewis, 47, of Woodmere. I couldn’t find him. Granted, I didn’t spend hours on my search, but still, I put in time.

Yidd Cup Funk A Deli is at Fairmount Temple, Beachwood, Monday night for Simchat Torah, and Tuesday night at Park Syn, Pepper Pike.

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October 16, 2019   2 Comments