Tuesday January 8, 1935
Your letter was very much like a sugar-coated pill. However I’ll be very brave and will meet you in New York, January 20th to take you home. Hope you don’t change your mind. We will make definite hours for our New York meeting later on. Just make sure to enjoy yourself and practice very hard. Don’t forget to develop your melody.
The last few days were very warm + sunny here and it made me feel very lazy. But to-day Mr. Brond came and despite the day being warm he made things hotter. No, he wasn’t sore, just had a big long program that must be fulfilled and so I was hopping all day. Now (it’s 8 P.M.) I’m feeling O.K. but very tired. To-morrow and Thursday we expect to work very late and Friday the store will be closed so that we can get the store in shape for a monster sale.
Do I miss you and do I love you? You can answer that as good as I can. You should by now! I was very pleased to hear that the folks enjoyed the small gifts. Please write me how they all are. How’s Leo making out? How’s Esur’s health etc + etc.
The company from whom we buy our hats have presented the Rockne employees with new hats. So when you see me in N.Y. don’t forget to tell me how nice my new hat looks on me. I’ll be very peeved if you neglect this detail.
Sunday after you left I came home and went to sleep. At 11 A.M. I was up to have Doc. Connelly dress my wound. Then came home read the paper, practised a little. Late in the afternoon I went over to see Becky. At night Sam + I went to the Troy Theatre to see “The President Vanishes”. If it plays in Washington while you’re there don’t fail to see this picture. It’s novel.
Monday was a hot, dull day at the store with no business. So I read the pamphlet Industrial Unionism, the one in which De Leon and Debs deliver speeches on this subject. I must have read the booklet 8 to 10 times but I enjoyed this yesterday more than any time previous. I expect to reread the Communist Manifesto soon. So you see I’m trying like hell to fill in the time until your return. Then I’ll hug and kiss you till you yell for mercy.
Oh yes! Sunday evening I happened to turn on the radio just before retireing and I tuned in on a program which Sigmund Spaeth was being interviewed. Useing Yankee Doodle as a basis he showed how Bach, Beethoven, De Busey, Chopin etc etc would play this melody and what a thrill I got!
Guess I’ve scribbled enough, so before closing let me again assure you that I’ll be brave even if it kills me. Write soon.
P.S. Regards to whole family. Bryans, Banks, Bernsteins
Editor’s Notes: As described in the last post, Izzy & Thelma have been married and living in Troy together for the last few months. It is a new year, 1935, and Thelma is visiting her family in Washington, D.C. for a few weeks. The 2 will reunite in NYC on January 20th.
While Thelma is away, Izzy is working very hard as manager of Rockne Clothes in preparation for a big sale. The new hat from the distributor was most likely a fedora in keeping with the fashion of the time period. When he’s not working hard he’s reading works of his Socialist/Communist heroes, seeing friends, and practicing the violin.
Sigmund Spaeth, whom Izzy hears on a radio interview, was a musicologist who focused on tracing the folk roots of popular songs (perhaps like Yankee Doodle). WNYC, the New York NPR station, offers 2 episodes with Spaeth (The Tune Detective) and 2 articles written by Spaeth. The variations of Yankee Doodle as great composers would play it, as imagined by Spaeth, is still at large and I would love to hear the recording.
To Watch: “The President Vanishes” is a political drama based on Rex Stout’s book of the same name. For an in-depth review check out this other blog https://movieclassics.wordpress.com/2011/12/03/the-president-vanishes-william-a-wellman-1934/