My great-grandfather, his brother-in-law…and The Three Stooges?

This coming October 15 would have been my great-grandfather David Louis Berger’s 150th birthday. Eight days later, I will mourn the 100th anniversary of his passing, under bizarre circumstances, but that is a tale I reserve for my book. “Louis,” as he preferred to be called (like my own father David Louis Berger liked toContinue reading “My great-grandfather, his brother-in-law…and The Three Stooges?”

Choosing the funny and the absurd…

There are very few persons, places or things I outright despise. One of those rare things is St. Valentine’s Day (despite my fascination with what happened that day in Chicago, IL in 1929). I generally believe that cynicism is toxic—but I am irredeemably cynical about this “Hallmark holiday.” My objection to the holiday was originallyContinue reading “Choosing the funny and the absurd…”

When is a pleasure “guilty?”

I first watched The Cotton Club (Francis Ford Coppola, 1984) as a sophomore in college, under curious circumstances. That year, I lived with two other men in a converted basement seminar room in Ezra Stiles College. The year before, that room had been occupied by a student we generally referred to as the “Saudi prince”Continue reading “When is a pleasure “guilty?””