Saturday, March 7, 2015

Doyle meets the Weinstocks.

(With grammar slightly and spelling greatly improved by the editor.)

2 June, 1902

We are living just a few blocks from a family of Jews and I have gotten a job with them as what they call a Shabbos Goy.

Shabbos is what they call their Sabbath, only they have theirs on Saturday and spell it differently than we who have it on Sunday. And Goy is what they call people who aren't schvartzas, which is what they call Negroes, who are Christians. Of course we call them Kikes and Yids and Sheeneys, and any other assortment of names, so Goy is pretty mild in return. So that I am, I am a Shabbos Goy.

You see, do you see, on their Shabbos, they don't do any work, not light a lamp or turn on an oven or certainly go to the factory. No, they do no work. So they have hired me to be their Shabbos Goy, that is the Goy who will do their work for them. Clean their dishes, tend to their cooking in the oven and any sundry chores that need doing. It isn't much of a job, paying me just 50 cents, but being that I am just a wee lad it is about all I can do to earn some money for me father.

I should probably tell you something about Weinstock, Rebbe Weinstock as I am made to call him, Rebbe being one of their Jewish words for Teacher, a term of respect which is how I must treat him, always saying 'yes, Rebbe,' and 'no, Rebbe,' and mostly 'Right away, Rebbe.' And of course Mrs. Rebbe Weinstock, who I must call nothing but Missus and must follow her every whim and caprice.

It is just the two of them Rebbe and Missus Weinstock and they have no children. Rebbe is a bear of a man and has a bear's hair and a beard as large as any I have ever seen. He wears at all times a small cap, not like the cap Irish people wear but a little circle of cloth that shows, he said when I asked, his respect for his God. He wears all manner of accoutrements that are meant to convey respect, God being the center of everything in his life, like a Priest.

I must now turn down the candle.

Writing more tomorrow.

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