The Big Pictures: Ep. 235



Folks, they've discontinued the obscenity warning for this show, but folks. This is John Mc Water and I should say that for this particular episode on which I'm a guest. You Might WanNa. Know that there is going to be a certain amount of what used to be called blue language. Three To. This is unorthodox. The Universe is leading Jewish podcast. I'm your host. Mark Oppenheimer joined as ever. By my co hosts, deputy editor, Stephanie Budnick Hello Good Day to you madam, and also to you and tablet editor at largely Liebowitz fishing for trout. Good Day to you sir this week. We bring you returning gentle the week John. mcwhirter is this history. Pete, is he? Is he on his way to Steve Martin Alec Baldwin Status, like this beauty question, because technically I think his his repeat was going on his podcast. Count for him. Don't broadcast. The same time, did we? It was one episode and we both aired it anyway that. Of. Course has driven so much traffic to our show John mcquarters podcast Lexicon Valley, one of my favorite podcasts. All about language, but he's back as a gentile as a linguist as a social commentator who is going to speak with us about everything from his research on curse words to his love of Jewish languages to his thoughts on contemporary black lives, matter moment, and always such a pleasure to have quarter here doing his gentile thing, we also share an interview for a while back, but still relevant with Shoshana Keats Gaskell who speaks about the importance of supporting women in Orthodox Jewish faces. Speaking of Orthodox spaces Leon Stephanie. You know where I was the past week at the Western. Sheva Godot La catskills. It's. Too good guesses both wrong I was in the catskills, and there was a wall, but it was the wall of my inlaws little cabin in Sullivan County around Lake Louise Marie in the town of Rock Hill where my family and I went on a week long scrabble and kayaking retreat and getting out of the city to my in laws place in the catskills is I mean it's great, because it's a nice little house and it's good to be away with my family the. The. Really exciting thing is although the billboards are mostly taken down usually when you drive up there, you see billboards for Kosher restaurants for some of the catskills resorts that still persist. I mean it's not far from Monticello and other kind of mainstays of old Jewish catskills life and there's something about going up there. Even though I didn't grow up with. Borscht Belt Judaism at all. There's something about the drive up there about going up on seventeen north and and just feeling. Feeling like like Sid Caesar is whispering to you like Phyllis diller. Is there like the tumblers around the pool? It's it's it feels like the promise that, even though it's not a land like unlike the real promised land, where there's archaeological evidence that we released in some of it at some time, this is promised Land We. We know some Jews were in, but we know I wasn't. One of them was born in one, thousand, nine, hundred, ninety, four, when that whole world. World was asked its peak and yet I went to the communal tennis courts that there little homeowners association helps keep up, and we bumped into just a couple of other families, and one of them was this Nice Jewish lady from Staten Island, who had grown up on Staten Island move to Brooklyn, but when she and her wife had their kids, they moved back to Staten Island to be near their mom to be near grandma near near Bubby and she was like. There was just something her mom had like a Big Star of David around her neck, and you just feel Judaism everywhere up there. You feel the cultural flavor and I really it makes me happy. Is that weird well? It's so funny that because when you first started talking about billboards and Monticello I assume you're going to talk about like the. Current enclave of Ultra Orthodox Jews casseus going up there. Yeah, yes, sort of flea up there for the weekends and like a lot of mini vans I can make all sorts of stereotypes about the drive up to Monticello but what you're actually talking about is like the former promised land of the spelt the catskills. You know there's a photographer Marissa Sheinfeld and she did these amazing photos of all of these former resorts which are basically like either most of them like grossing. You know the ones you really really have heard of are basically rubble. Ruins of a lot of them. And she went in and took these photographs that these like grand rooms with just like grass, growing in the middle, and it's there's something it's almost like when you see these old synagogues eastern Europe when you tore them, and you're like they're barely standing. It's sort of the same thing in a lot of ways, right? It's like this sort of this culture that has really. Really just been somebody radicalized. I, mean the idea of the bungalow colonies which was something that my father died. My mother-in-law did like that. That's just not something think that we we do anymore little known fact, if you place a note into cracks of one of these ruins, the ghost of Patrick, swayze comes back well. How in Fact Patrick? SWAYZE's character was based on my father-in-law who found a bride at? Not No. That's not true. No, but my father-in-law did you go up to singles weekends at cultures in the catskills? It's not where he met my mother in law I think he met her at a party back in the city, he lived on the lower east side. She lived in the Bronx by the way this time. When you say the city, it's correct because you meet New York City as a by. Leaving the city of New Which? which actually nobody would ever say? We don't call ourselves the city, but he was, he went to those weekends up there and people did, and it was a way to get out of the city that was cheaper than a lot of the Jersey shore, and a lot of long island was still inhospitable to Jews and you got out, and you've got some fresh air, and you drive up there, and it's still like the temperature drops ten degrees. There was a thunder storm every afternoon about four o'clock, and Sid could feel it rolling in. She would say. Say like about three fifty six. You'd say bringing the towels. It's going to her Jewish six fence yet. She remembers from her childhood, being able to tell at the country house when it was going to rain, and this house is on a piece of land that my father-in-law bought like in the late sixties or early seventies as just a piece of land before he could afford to put a house on it, and it was just land for a long time. I want a little piece of the catskills, and then sometime when my wife and her. Her sister were very young. He built a little cabin and there it is, it's just it's just a beautiful lake. Little piece of the American dream was such a great week I had such a nice time. I'm so happy now. Good for you so happy for you. How are you Stephanie was I'm sad. Call Reiner died just after we finished last week's episode. It's one of those things where it sucks that obviously Carl Reiner was so present like he was always on twitter. He was a great liberal voice on twitter like saying things that were so. So obvious in which so much funnier, because Carl Reiner was saying them so died last week at ninety eight, and since then I feel like I've been really doing like a retrospective. There's so much of his content as we say now that you can go back and watch and something that I watched. I watched his episode of Comedians in cars getting coffee with Jerry Seinfeld where he lets jerry come over for his famous dinners. He has with Mel. Brooks Mel Brooks over for dinner and the eat like an actual TV trays and they watch. No No. What I do. The You have never seen him work in person. What was seen. What? Why are you bothering? No. I will. Now I will I, and you're like this is the sweetest thing, and there's something so deeply human about these two wildly successful men who started from nothing who came up together who now are like quite old, and they just hang out together every night and he has this whole thing. If you're not in the obituary breakfast that actually became a documentary that he put together. We're basically you hear from a lot of older people, just people in their ninety S, and over one hundred about look what they do what their life is like and how they stay active and I. I just have been really doing it and you kind of wish that you

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