I have been a member of the JCC men's club since its formation umptine years ago. That means I don't remember how many years ago that took place. It has been so long a time they made me an honorary member.
This is all part of my story. Each weekly meeting they bring in a speaker who generally will speak on current affairs or something important. My friend Joe Rossman, who is known as the Motor Doctor, was scheduled to speak December 22, in the morning. Although he has a regular radio show on WERE every Tuesday for two hours 8p-10p he felt he needed support when he spoke to the men's club. He asked me to be that support and I made it a point to be there for him.
He performed brilliantly. He is a guy who really knows the mechanisms of today's automobiles up and down. He went through all the yeses and nos of taking care of your vehicle. His audience was spell bound. I saw faces glued on every word he said. Even though I had known Joe for many years he surprised me with his technical knowledge. It was a treat just to see him perform. Something new for him. He even used a computer screen to validate his point. He audience surely appreciated that.
Many years ago when I was undergoing a bypass operation at the Cleveland Clinic Joe substituted for me for four weeks or more. I was 64 years old then, which will indicate to you how far back that was to you. He did come on as a guest later on a few times on my radio show "Maury's Market". In fact, I appeared on his show just a few months ago.
He is so easy to work with because he is relaxed in his approach. As they say "You give to get or you get pay back for what you did or didn't do". I will be appearing on Joe's program on WERE January 20, 2015 8p-9pm while he is on a cruise. That should be fun because I don't have any restrictions on what I'm going to be talking about. I already started to think about subjects I should tackle. There are any number of them including books that I love.
I just finished reading I Am China: A Novel by Xiaolu Guo. I know many people in my audience that would be intrigued with this particular book. No time to discuss it right know but it's on the agenda.
I could spend some time talking about restaurants. You may remember I reviewed restaurants for 11 years for a cable magazine in the 80's. I always used 3 people and me to develop a good analysis on what that restaurant was all about. It was also important to me to never downgrade any restaurant I would review. If it was poor or questionable in my analysis I would prefer to pass it up. I would refuse to review any bad restaurant.
My managing editor disagreed with that style but I insisted that I wouldn't cross over. He would cry out "I have to fill that space" and I would comment with my argument.
I always would refer to Giovanni's at Richmond and Chagrin as one of the best in town. It is rated a 5 star and deserving of the accreditation. Hunan should get the prize for the best Chinese restaurant. There are great many restaurants that have sprung up that are ethnic, Bangkok on Mayfield Rd. being one of them. Peppermint at Lander Circle is steady and good, and highly rated. Fire continues to be one of the best in town located in Shaker Square and don't forget his museum piece which is the talk of the town.
Talking about books again you'll love Calvin Trillin's Messages From My Father: A Memoir
. It may get you to thinking about you and your father's relationship. How about this one? On Earth as It Is in Heaven: A Novel
by Davide Enia. It's a great book about Palermo, Italy in the heart of the Mafia world. The Garden of Letters
by Alyson Richman and The Lost Wife
by the same author are good winter reading.
I could always go back to my roots talking about fruits and vegetables. There is no end to the argument of organic and sustainable foods. I can always discuss that in length and why I choose sustainable food. And when we are thinking about it what about genetically modified foods against heirloom varieties. Why do tomatoes taste so badly around this time of year and what to do about it.
Every once in awhile The New Yorker Magazine
that I have been subscribed with for 35 years will come up with a fascinating article that needs to be aired. The last one I read just a last 2 weeks was about How and why the Aids disease has never been cured. It outlines its history and goes into detail about its successes and failures.
I can't stop there because I like to talk about my books. My third book published about 8 months ago entitled Maury Feren My Life So Far
. I am down to my last few copies that are available at Corky's and Lenny at Village square at Chagrin Blvd. So you see you also can be a part of all of this. Calls will be accepted.
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Cleveland Seniors columns