February 14th, 2009

Character Exercise: Holiday Letter Inspired by Personal Ad

Dearest Friends and Family,

Well, it’s that time of year again–the lights, the hugs, the presents, and all those spinning spinning dreidels: it’s Hannukah!

Just kidding! Of course, I am as Christian as a candidate for American public office, and now that Adrienne Goldberg is no longer in my life, I haven’t the slightest need to light a candle during the month of Kislev. As I string the lights and tinsel from fridge to coat-stand and back again, I am sending all my friends and family out in the great white north my sincerest good wishes for merriment at this merry time.

What’s this, you are wondering? Why kill perfectly good trees with this silly letter, Trevor, you might be asking, when you will be home among us, wishing us Merry Christmas in person while attending the Satelliteberg Elementary Festive Singalong and eating your weight in buttertarts at Aunt Sally’s Advent party and falling asleep at the pre-dawn prayer gathering!

Sadly, I won’t make it this year, my dearest friends and family. It’s been a tough year–I don’t like to complain, but managing a hedge fund has gotten a lot less glamourous in the past few months. After the layoffs, you’d think I would have been left with a good deal of free time, but with the class-action suit along with the divorce proceedings finally proceeding, I wound up spending most of my days with lawyers, and my nights in an Manischewitz-wine-soaked despair.

Kidding! Although you know my endless regard for Adrienne hasn’t ended, I abide by her report that we “want different things”! Although I don’t even know what that means! From what I can see across the arbitration table, we’re still both putting non-dairy creamer in our caffeinated beverages when the milk is in pitchers, because that little Kosher “u” just makes us feel better. And when, during our extremely pleasant smalltalk while one of the lawyers is in the restroom, Adrienne mentions a tv show she has enjoyed, it’s almost always one I’ve enjoyed too, or else one I was just about to rent the complete DVD collection of.

So don’t buy me any DVDs for Christmas this year, I’ve seen almost everything in an effort to have something new to present at arbitration smalltalk! Also, they might get busted in the mail. Please just don’t worry about it!

I know, I know, you might think that the end of a six-year marriage and a brilliant career would be an excellent time for the warm embrace of high-school classmates and second cousins, for the comforting tones of my mother asking if I knew all along there was something wrong with a marriage in a synagogue and that’s why we never had kids?

Oh, mom, I love you! But I’m bound and determined to spend the holidays and the remains of my savings on a trip to Israel to finally see where Adrienne’s people came from–I figure it’s the least I can do for the woman I spent the best years of my life with. And I know what you are thinking, Laurence, that Adrienne’s people were from Newark, which means there’s no reason to go where they are firing bombs and don’t even speak English instead of where the beer is cheap and G-d smiles on our OHL team, and yes, but you know what I mean, you big anti-Semitic galoot!

But I really think that this embrace of the Chosen People is an excellent way to illustrate to Adrienne how very much she is my chosen person. I also think that those of you who have chosen to keep her in your hearts and in the family by sending cards and letters are doing *almost* the right thing. However, I know from personal experience in the arbitration room that, now that we are no longer wed (legal as of this morning) she would rather not receive explicitly Christian images in the mail, such as creches, angels, or the seasonally inappropriate cruxifiction scene you sent, Laurence–nice, really nice.

So, without further ado, I’m off on my Birthright tour (if they contact any of you, please be discreet about any small fudgings of the truth of my “birthright”!) Should you miss me enough to want to send gifts, you could give instead to the local Jewish Community Centre. Hah! Of course there is no Jewish Community Centre in Satelliteberg, or even any Jews since the Weinbergers got into that tiff about prayer in school (I’ll finally weigh in on this one: yes, I think grace *is* technically a prayer) and lobbied the county to move the town line so that the family now lives in Burrsbury.

If you are still inclined towards gifting, perhaps you could forward your cheques to one of the fine Jewish organizations in Newark, New Jersey.

I’ll send postcards from the Wailing Wall.


(This wound up having very very little to do with the poor guy whose personal ad I used, and I will *not* be linking to it. He was, I think, quite a catch, and this sort of nonsense would not be helpful to him or his pursuit of happiness.)

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So Much Love by Rebecca Rosenblum

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