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- Billy -

- Sells for Less -

By Jay KantorPublished 2 months ago 3 min read
Top Story - February 2024
47
Original 'Schtick' Art © Kantor Kreations-Kolections

— Migration —

THE Sponsor, Cousin Billy Kantor, would bring relatives escaping Russian Persecuting Pogroms filtering 2-3 at a time through Ellis Island, the Immigration reception area in New York. Not far from the Statue of Liberty, "Give us your Tired your Poor." And, putting them to work in his Haberdashery. "Billy Sells for Less" Sioux City, Iowa. Of course the suit-tie-and fedora were the 'Dress Code' of the day; probably not the case today.

Our family ancestry was very limited with no archives other than a few snapshots. The sketch is from my memory of the image of Billy's from a photo that hung from our Sister, Vicky Lynn's, wall for years. Always subject to a Giggle — the kid peeking out of the upstairs window. I'll be adding a few creative license story fillers with this since we have no recorded family history. But, don't we all 'Cheat' a little on these 'True' Stories; I know I do.

Billy's family are Stiffly sidewalk 'Posing' {the 1st of the 'Say-Cheese' smile efforts} outside of the store, with a big pedestal mounted Kodak camera and exploding flash to capture them. No I-phone butt cameras then: The term 'Butt-Dial' probably wasn't even in the Dictionary; even the Oxford.

But they weren't into OverSell-HighlyPitched-Logo'd advertising or even Gorgeous Influencers - just simple slogans. No competitive shout out Bells & Whistles to promote their wares. On the corner a Chinese Cafe was called "Ok Chinese Food" and it was just 'Ok' (Seriously). Simply the neighborhood zone of influence.

Our Dad who "Accidently" had (4) Kids: "It would be cheaper to Board-Them than to Feed-Them." Always encouraging us to 'Fill-UP' on the Cheap Stuff.

The Clean Plate Club — It was suggested I ask to publish this into the 'Feast' Category. Who me, I burn microwave dinners - Nah - Cj would 'Noodle' me out anyway.

Tradition~Tradition - Same Values - Different Recipes

Cultural Exchanges: A Special part of the holidays since I'm alone now is that my Lovely & Kind neighbors bring me plates of their traditional family fare: And they really pile it on. Always a picky-eater the truth is I can't eat most of it; but it wouldn't be gracious of me to say so. I mean I don't want to waste-toss it; so what would YOU do?

— Such a Melting Pot —

The Kim's are Korean - They grow Kimchi and treat me to a variety of dishes with this 'fragrant' staple in it - Whew -

The Zen's are Filipino. They stuff their egg rolls with endless meat varieties. I've told them that I don't eat meat. Their comment, Quote: "You won't even taste the meat."...Hmm! And of course the DiAngelos MeatBalls/wit everything 'Sprinkled-On' Italian. Persian neighbors bring me grape leaf wrapped goodies that smell just scrumptious. My Ketchup on everything habit (The Dinner Disguise) would most likely highly insult them though.

- I know: Have a Block-Party I'll supply all of this food -

Noodle Kugel Casserole ~ So laden with butta' and even Lard called 'Schmaltz' recipes. But, don't think anyone ever keeled over and died eating it - at least not while seated at the table. Russian Borscht/with beets and a dollop. Herring/with sour cream. I know - not exactly a Big Mac.

Wife, Rita Louise, had a favorite sarcastic British expression when interloping her 'Happy Place' Kitchen: "Don't tell your Grandmother how to Suck-Eggs" ( really).

Family isn't just always about food: But, where else can we scrunch all together, 'Willingly.' Table 'Feast' Special Gatherings were a bit different to 'Archive' then. 35mm Videos were taken with someone following with a table lamp for light, whose cord wrapped around everyones necks, as they filmed about the table. Of course, the making of memories was worth a little neck tickling-twist, if survived.

Special Foods ~ Expressions — So What's for Dessert?

Jay Kantor, Chatsworth, California

'Senior' Vocal Author - Vocal Village Community

Family
47

About the Creator

Jay Kantor

Retired: Write for "The Kids Someday"

Reader insights

Outstanding

Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

Top insights

  1. Heartfelt and relatable

    The story invoked strong personal emotions

  2. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

  3. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

  1. Easy to read and follow

    Well-structured & engaging content

  2. Eye opening

    Niche topic & fresh perspectives

  3. Masterful proofreading

    Zero grammar & spelling mistakes

  4. On-point and relevant

    Writing reflected the title & theme

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Comments (44)

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  • Ameer Bibi6 days ago

    Superb writing, I also not only enjoyed your style of describing the scenes but also drawing. You are naturally god gifted artist. Congratulations 🎉 on top story. Regards

  • Novel Allen2 months ago

    I swear Jay, you need to make a movie of your life, write the book and send it to Holy Wood, sure they will bite. Another fascinating episode in your very exciting life. Great getting to know you, kudos TS.

  • Interesting family tale.

  • JBaz2 months ago

    This is a terrific tale. I really enjoyed the neighborhood melting pot. You did such a wonderful job of telling this it has a feel good aspect that we all want and need, especially now. this line made me chuckle- Our Dad who "Accidently" had (4) Kids Congratulations

  • Dariusz 2 months ago

    Congratulations on top story :)

  • John Cox2 months ago

    I love the drawing and the story! Authentic grape leaves? Where do I sign up! Congratulations on top story!

  • Christy Munson2 months ago

    Food certainly is both universally uniting and off-putting. Thanks for sharing this fun narrative. I enjoyed it! Congratulations on the TS.

  • Mark Gagnon2 months ago

    Circling back to say congratulations J-bud! Well done.

  • Carol Townend2 months ago

    I'm a foodie myself! My gran brought me up that way, and even though I had an eating disorder in the past, I have regained my love of food. I love this culture-friendly story Jay!

  • Andrea Corwin 2 months ago

    Congrats! And I am so glad the immigrants came and showed us so many delectable dishes from their countries - Russian, Italian, Mexican, Peruvian, Asian and on and on. Your story reminds us how fun it is to find out about neighbors, friends and their histories and share their favorite foods. Loved your drawing.

  • Lightbringer 2 months ago

    i just subscribed...Your write up is amazing

  • Anna 2 months ago

    Congrats on Top Story!🥳

  • Gerald Holmes2 months ago

    Loved this. Thanks for the laughs! Congrats on the Top Story.

  • Leslie Writes2 months ago

    Loved your story and your drawing! Congrats on the TS!

  • Shirley Belk2 months ago

    Congratulations on Top Story, Jay!!!!

  • Test2 months ago

    Awe-inspiring work! Keep up the remarkable effort—congrats!

  • I enjoyed this thoroughly, Jay, especially the drawing. But my favorite? "Don't tell your Grandmother how to Suck-Eggs" Rita Louise knew a thing or two.

  • Cathy Deslippe2 months ago

    I enjoyed Billy. I can't wait to join you for a Block party, the food sounds amazing. Congratulations on Top Story, well done. Keep up the great writing, a break for me for a while, couldn't walk away without reading.

  • Judey Kalchik 2 months ago

    Congrats on the Top Story, Bro!

  • Cathy holmes2 months ago

    This is wonderful, Jay. "Of course, the making of memories was worth a little neck tickling-twist, if survived." LOL. Thanks for the smiles.

  • Margaret Brennan2 months ago

    love it. very amusing and spot on with the different nationalities. My grandparents were born in Russia (weren't related in any way - yet) and emigrated to Poland where they lived until Joseph was 19 and Mary 16. Then they emigrated to America.. Two years later, the met and married. And yet, not once did they ever mention their Russian heritage. They only spoke Polish and while Grandpa learned English, grandma refused. Just one of those things.

  • Daphsam2 months ago

    Fun read, congratulations on top story

  • Babs Iverson2 months ago

    Fabulous fun!!! Loving it!!!♥️♥️💕

  • Hannah Moore2 months ago

    I love the chaos of this melting pot.

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