Mort Laitner
Mort Laitner

“Evergreen”

I studied the photograph in the Times.

“Moshe, look at this picture. What a humongous ship!

Look at all those containers stacked up on its deck.

How many containers do you think are on that ship?”

“Mort, I have no friggin’ idea.”

My eyes focused on the name painted on the side of the giant container ship, “EVERGREEN.”

“Moshe, do you remember that Streisand sang a song called, Evergreen?

“Yup. I loved that song. Barbra really belted it out of the ballpark.

Love, soft as an easy chair

Love, fresh as the morning air

One love which is shared by two

I found with you

“What movie was that song in?” I asked.

A Star Is Born”

“Moshe, did you know that in the prestigious pages of the New York Times, that bastion of truth and unbiased journalism, the Evergreen ship is being called the ‘Ever Given.’

“So.”

Do you know how ironic those words are coming from the mouth of the Times?” I asked.

“Nope, how ironic?”

“Well, has that newspaper¬† “ever given” Israel a break?”

“Not that I could remember. Well, maybe in 1948.”

“Had that newspaper, “ever given” proper coverage of the Holocaust during World War II?”

“Well, maybe at the end of the war, in 1945, after the Camps were liberated by American troops.”

“It seems to me that The New York Times has a tradition of being stuck in the mud on certain issues that are important to me?

“It does seem that way.”

I continued studying the photos in the NYT of the Evergreen or Ever Given stuck in the mud.

“That poor ship is really stuck in the Suez Canal.”

And then out of nowhere my writer’s brain yelled, “Holy Moses! What a friggin’ metaphor!”

“Mort, what the hell are you yelling about?” Moshe asked.

“Well, right next door to the Suez Canal is a small country that’s stuck in electoral mud, just like that container ship.

They’re stuck in a process where Israelis are voting all the time and failing to elect a leader.”

What should we Americans do?” I asked.

“Ya know, we have a complex that allows us to think that we’re exceptional.

And of course, we know what’s best for everyone.” Moshe replied.

“Should American Jews send our thoughts, prayers and solutions to Israel?

Have we ever given Israel any bad advice?

Should American Jewry dare to give Israelis advice on who to vote for?”

“Of course not!” Moshe proclaimed.

“Israelis have never attempted, nor would they even think of trying to convince American Jews on whom, or is it who, to vote in an presidential election.”

“Well, Israel desperately needs some American tugboats to free itself from this electoral log jam,” I stated.

“I doubt it.”

“But our suggestions on voting could be the best advice US Jews have ‘ever given’¬† the Israelis.”

“I doubt it.

Proud Israelis really don’t want to hear about who to vote for from their distant American cousins.”

“You know you’re right. Just as long as those proud Israelis understand that we both live on the same two-way street.”

About the Author
Florida's Jewish short-story writer, speaker, film producer and retired attorney. He has authored, "A Hebraic Obsession", "The Hanukkah Bunny" and "The Greatest Gift." He produced an award-winning short film entitled, "The Stairs". Movie can be viewed on my TOI blog. Mort is a correspondent for the Fort Lauderdale Sun Sentinel Jewish Journal.
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