Sept 19 1934

Wednesday, Sept. 19, 1934

Dear Thelma,

A week from this coming Sunday is an excursion from Troy to N.Y.C., that is, on September 30th.  Please let me know, as soon as possible, if there is an excursion from Washington to N.Y.C. on that date and if you will be able to come to New York on that date if there is one.  Not seeing you but once a month is positively too damned long a period, and I’m beginning to think that it would be much better if we could meet a least once every two weeks.  That would mean taking every excursion, but I think it would be much better than our present arraingement.  What sayest thou my love?

Well, what progress have you made in securing any new pupils?  Bill has all the pupils Leo gave him.  The minister’s son, who went to California came back (I forget his name) and he also is taking lessons from Bill.  The new studio is nicely situated and with all of us pushing for him he is bound to eke out a living in Troy, if he can only stay put.  As far as making any money in the music profession (outside of jazz) those days are over.  A job now and then (mostly then) is all one can expect.  Bill would earn more at the end of the year as a shoe-salesman (if he could be me) than a music teacher.  I think this also applies to Leo.  Forsaking an art is a terrible thing but we must buy carrots + spinach, eh what?

How’s Marion coming along on her job?  Has it become permanent?  How is your father’s business improving?  George landed a job!  It looks like a steady one.  He is doing the work he likes, butchering.  And he is getting $20.00 to start.  I hope it lasts.

Patsy Conte was just in the store and introduced me to his wife.  When he learned that you were in Washington, he began feeling sorry for me.  He tells me that he’s doing labor work now because there’s no money playing jazz anymore.  There was a time (not very long ago) when Patsy earned 45.00 to 50.00 a week playing fiddle and piano-accordion.  But now he say 18.00 to 20.00 is all he can expect per week doing that kind of work, so he figures it’s time to turn to new fields.

Our last outdoor meeting (Monday evening) was spoiled by rain.  It promised to be a dandy.  To-night Sam Dave + I go to Schenectady to talk in Crescent Park.  Right now it looks like rain.  I heard a pretty good story to-day from a traveling-clothing-salesman.  I guessed the answer immediately (not bragging), see if you can.  Two young ladies promised each other that the day after their marriage each would write a card relating the experience of the first nite.  Young lady A married first.  And on the following morning dropped a card to young lady B as per their promise.  All it said on the postal-card was.  Chesterfield—-Maxwell House Coffee and Month of March.  If you guess the answers your mind is as smutty as mine.

You say Esur is doing well, having a job and a contingent job.  Well I must be doing wonderfully according to that because I have three jobs in one.

I’m going to see Palmer Friday but I know what’s the answer right now.  He needs exactly what I said before, pressure.

Thelma, please answer my letters sooner.  If I don’t hear from you in a couple of days, I get the willies; if my letters to you are shots-in-the-arm, you can just imagine what your letters mean to me.  Do you love me as I love you?


P.S. Regards to all.  The enclosed clipping speaks for itself.  Show it to Leo, Sam + Celia.  It’s in connection a conversation we had at the Grand Central the last time I was in N.Y.C.

Editor’s Notes: Izzy is asking to step up the momentum of their relationship with twice monthly visits.  Reliant on “excursions” from their respective cities, relying on friends in NYC to crash with, and coordinating meeting through letters and the occasional phone call.  

Izzy moves on to talking about Bill again, about how he can make a living teaching music in Troy while also stating that teaching music may not be a viable career anymore.  Is he trying to convince Thelma that she can move her career back to Troy or that she should abandon that course and find another vocation?  He says there’s still money in Jazz music but then Patsy has taken a considerable dip in his finances playing Jazz.  “Forsaking an art is a terrible thing” but Izzy had to do just that after moving back from NYC and becoming manager at Rockne Clothes.  Perhaps it is time for Thelma to follow suit.

The Socialist Labor Party continues to strive for its goals and Izzy takes his meetings to Schenectady.  

Can anyone figure out the dirty joke?  It must have something to do with the brands’ slogans.  Chesterfield Cigarettes: “They satisfy” or a million more suggestive sounding ones you can find here and Maxwell House Coffee:  “Good to the last drop”.  Not sure what the Month of March has to do with anything, but maybe I don’t want to know.  Thanks, Uncle Izzy.

Stay tuned in the next couple of weeks for an announcement and a change of course.



3 thoughts on “Sept 19 1934

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      1. Haha fantastic! I was dying to know. Coffee and cigarettes I get (I think) but March didn’t make sense.

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