The Kindler Confab Continues – 1939 May 20

May 20, 1939

Dear Thelma,

We were forced to come in to town to-day again.  Mom’s toe didn’t look so good to Pop so he thought the best thing to do was to have a doctor’s inspection.  Rose made an appointment with the doctor for one o’clock.  If it isn’t one thing it’s another.  Pop, however is still doing pretty good.  Now he is more worried over Mom than anything else.

Yesterday when we got back to Grafton I swept + washed the both floors, that is upstairs and downstairs. Cleaned up the entire poarch, chopped wood, prepaired the evening meal and cleaned up the dishes.  Meanwhile I acted the clown to keep them cheered up.  After Ma went to bed, I read the paper for Pop until he fell asleep.  I mention these things to give you an idea of how I keep busy.

What’s news regarding Leo’s confab with Killer I mean Kindler?  Did he succeed in convincing the bastard of Lee’s innocence?  Pugatsky has been asking me if Leo signed up for next season.  Evidently Dave Levinson must have “shot off” his mouth re the difficulties of Leo’s.  Also Spiak when he called me up asked me regarding the same matter.  I answered both Pugatsky and Spiak that I don’t know a thing about it at all and cut the subject with both of them as soon as I could.

Listen to this.  I may get a ride to N.Y.C. next Saturday (sometimes in the afternoon) with Dave Levinstein.  He is driving down to buy a cello.  I just called him up and he says he may squeeze me in.  By the way, if Sam does decide to come to N.Y for the Decoration Day week-end tell him to be careful not to get picked up in Maryland.  Dave Levinstein got fined $10.00 just outside of Baltimore.  He paid this under protest and his shyster-brother is trying to get it back.  So let this $10.00 that Dave paid be a lesson to Sam.

Well another day has passed and it’s a day less until I have you in my arms, Darling.

It’s now almost five months that I’ve been away from Washington and four weeks since I saw you last and it all seems as though ages have passed.

Sweetheart, I’m so darned lonesome for a glimpse of you that I don’t know if I can wait till Saturday or Sunday.  There’s no further need to proclaim my love.  It has been so firmly established that it seems superfluous to mention it and yet I can’t help but shouting that I’m crazy about you.

Darling we are now going up to the doctor’s office, so take good care of yourself and remember me to all.


P.S. Inclosed please find $7.00 let me know if you receive it.


Editor’s Notes: Thelma’s brother Leo is playing violin in the National Symphony Orchestra in D.C. led by Hans Kindler.  For the past few months there has been a feud, or perhaps a one-sided complaint, about Kindler’s leadership.  We don’t have many details, only what we can glean from these letters.  I believe Lee is another man in the symphony, not a nickname for Leo. Rumors are now floating amongst their friends and concern about Leo continuing with the symphony has surfaced. Will he continue to play under the “Dutch Dictator”?? Stay tuned! Or maybe we won’t find out. *shrug*


Decoration Day was the original name of our Memorial Day.  In this instance, and in many current conversations, it is just referenced as a long weekend. Originally, it was established after the Civil War as a day to literally decorate the graves of fallen Union soldiers.

Etymology Corner: “To shoot off one’s mouth” – To boast or talk too much; to tell secrets  The Tumblr “Rolls off the Tongue” takes a “shot” at its original meaning

Shyster – From the German word scheisser ‘worthless person’ refers to someone unethical, disreputable. Someone who uses questionable methods to get what they want – broken kneecaps, perhaps?



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