Wednesday, May 14, 2008

June 28, 1927 - Atlantic City


Dear Jeanie:

Very little time to write
here,1 this is just a
reminder of my regard
for you2



1 - For those of you just joining us, Papa mailed this card from the 1927 Zionist Organization of America convention in Atlantic City. It's postmarked 1:00 PM, so he must have dashed it off between morning meetings or while daydreaming during a long speech. I think he had "very little time to write" because there was intrigue afoot -- a movement had taken shape to unseat the longtime leadership of the Z.O.A. and Papa was, as we shall soon see, an active part of it.

2 - This is hardly the sentiment of a man who had given up on winning my grandmother's affection, as Papa said he had in the letter he wrote two days earlier. ("What's the use," he wrote about his chances with her, conceding that "there is one consolation and that is that I have won your friendship...and this friendship is going to be everlasting".) He must have regretted sending that letter the moment it disappeared into the mail slot, because the above is the second follow-up postcard he wrote (here's the first) in which he restated his interest in my grandmother. Perhaps, throughout the convention, he'd occasionally stop in the the midst of his duties, shut his eyes tight and think "I shouldn't have written that stupid thing about everlasting friendship" though it would appear to those around him that he'd been overwhelmed by passion for Zionist debate.

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