Semitic Satisfaction

Every so often, life takes a turn in the direction one would want. When that happens to me, I start to entertain the notion of the existence of some higher being.  Then, I read the newspaper and see the goings on in the world and I’m brought crashing back to earth…..realizing that no divine presence has interceded on my behalf;  that instead, sheer happenstance has been at work. 

The good fortune I’m referring to is that I had a  “Letter To The Editor” published in The Times the other day(  If this is not the Holy Grail for a writer, it’s certainly one of the steps along the way.  Apparently, the editorial board at the paper has  adopted a more tolerant policy towards Jews and decided to print my letter. I say that they must have changed their policy because this letter was no better or worse than the other several hundred thousand that I have sent them in the last several years.  So, either they’ve changed their anti-Semitic ways or I’ve simply worn them down.  Either way, this was the first non-real estate related letter of mine that has made it to the big time.  (For newer readers, you might want to visit:

But, as with many long-awaited events, there’s a good distance between the fantasy and the reality. ( “All that glitters is not gold”, Sam Stein circa: 1950, 1952, 1954-1961).  After the publication of the aforementioned masterpiece, there was  a small trickle of recognition from friend(s) and family (and honestly, this only at my prompting).  Not a single  call from a classmate from first grade asking if I was that  Neil Stein.  No old friends crawling out of the woodwork bemoaning the fact that we had lost touch,promising to never, ever  let that happen again.  No hearing from far-flung acquaintances.   Not a bit of the celebrity and minor fame that I thought would accompany the event.  After all, this is The New York Times  for God’s sake!

It’s hard to know what to make of this resounding silence.  I’m trying really, really hard not to take this too personally….hoping  that it’s possible that  not everyone reads the Letters to the Editor as faithfully as I do.  I suppose that’s a possibility.  Still, as I’m thinking about it, most of the folks who might have checked in with me are gentile.  Jeez, wouldn’t it be ironic if I’ve just replaced one group that discriminates against me with another.





5 Responses to “Semitic Satisfaction”

  1. Steve Hamilton Says:

    Frankly, I waste far too much time reading snarky, self-effacing, new-media, blogs to indulge in old media like The New York Times. Then again, I also got rid of cable last year and didn’t even realize they were still publishing since I’ve stopped watching Pat Kiernan’s “In The Papers” on NY1.

  2. iron(ic)man triathlon Says:

    steve….. no paper, no cable. this can only help your backhand, no?

  3. jackie Says:

    I’ve had two letters to the editor printed by the Times and I can’t even remember what the first one was. Not sure anybody else even noticed, but hey, my backhand has improved.

    • iron(ic)man triathlon Says:

      Two letters! And you don’t remember one of them! Makes me sound almost pathetic. (altho, there’s a chance it makes you sound kind of forgetful).

  4. Letter to The Edit… « Ironicman's Blog Says:

    […] I’ve written before ( I’ve been sending letters to the editor at The Times for years without any of them being […]

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