How could this be happening again, in 2023? This quote from a story by Yair Rosenberg, whose excellent "Deep Shtetl" column appears in the Atlantic, is one of many such expressions of horror and shock. "I’m a child of Holocaust survivors,” one Israeli woman told reporters. “I grew up hearing stories of the camps. I thought those were the worst stories. These stories are worse.
Among Ashkenazi Jews, it’s traditional to honor the dead by naming children after them, but considered bad luck to do so if there’s a chance that the relative so honored might still be alive. This made the immediate aftermath of World War II problematic for many with missing family members, Jewish naming-wise. When my older sister was born, our father was still uncertain
It had been a long time since I'd seen my friend, Margo—several decades, in fact. Growing up on the same block in the Flatbush section of Brooklyn, we had been inseparable in childhood. Moves from the East Coast--I to Tucson, she to Los Angeles—and assorted life changes drifted us apart, but we recently reconnected on Facebook. My trip to LA to apply for my Austrian passport
I am recently back from a quick restaurant-packed trip to Los Angeles, where I went to apply for my Austrian passport. I gravitated towards food I craved because I can't get it in Tucson -- before my Tucson readers complain, I am challenging you to dispute my statement that there is not a single Jewish-style deli in town, good or bad -- and food that celebrated my new Austrian
It was a long and circuitous route studded with emotional landmines, but today I can announce my arrival at the destination: My application for Austrian citizenship was approved. I was apprised of this fact via a phone call from the Austrian consulate in Los Angeles that I almost didn't answer. It was a late afternoon in January and I was watching Amy Schneider rout her
As my CV will tell you, I am an editor as well as a writer. Correcting spelling and grammatical errors is second nature; I'm one of those people who proofreads restaurant menus (though not, you'll be relieved to hear, out loud when I'm with other people). So perhaps it's fitting that I should end up contemplating the fate of my namesake aunt because of a typo on a
Though I am not as good as I'd like to be at keeping up with this blog—and not as good as Google would like me to be, according to my rankings--many people have nevertheless managed to find my posts over the years. Most recently, I heard from my cousin Rena, whom I'd been trying to locate for years. Those marital name changes wreak havoc on genealogy. She commented: I
It's been a while since I started working on my application for dual citizenship with Austria. So long that I forgot I had already filled out the preliminary forms and emailed them to the Austrian Consulate in Los Angeles. So long that I let my hair go Pandemic Grey and I am now I'm obsessing: If I put those grey-tressed images on my new Austrian passport (which I do not
Like many writers, I enjoy crafting articles. It's fun to explore different topics and, after all this time, I still get a kick out of seeing my byline in different outlets. But publishing has changed in recent years, largely for the worse. Magazines and newspapers are constantly folding or getting bought out by large corporations, with a concomitant shift of staff and
I'm thinking about applying for dual citizenship with Austria. As of September 1, it is available to direct descendants of those killed or forced to leave the country when it became Nazified. I easily qualify on both sides of my family, with a mother and father born in Austria and residing there in 1938, not to mention grandparents who were unable to escape. As "dual"