Had the weirdest thing happen yesterday. Got a knock on my door at the Leland the night before we left for Boston and there was this old Jewish fellow standing there holding a Tigers pennant at his side. I figured he was just some old fan who wanted his pennant signed so I invited him in for a minute.
He said he had been to our game with the White Sox that afternoon. Then he told me his name was Moshe Kushnik, and he was the cousin of Zeb Kushnik.
“The cousin Zeb visited four years ago when he got all those Tigers souvenirs for Markie?” I asked him.
He said yes. I told him I had just gotten a letter from Zeb and was told his cousin’s name was Ruben Glass and I was supposed to meet him in New York this weekend and give him money. Moshe’s face turned all kinds of pale, and he settled into one of my room chairs.
“That is not right,” he said.
“WHAT is not right?”
He looked up at me, his eyes practically shaking.
“My cousin Zeb was taken away and shot over a month ago. That is what I came here to tell you.”
Now I was the one going pale.
“It was horrible,” he continued. “There were six or seven of them. Jews still working at the printing place. And one day at lunch time German soldiers walked in and just took them away. ”
“But how could that…Zeb has been writing me! Unless the letters were de—”
“They were not from his hand. Believe that. And if you got one from Markie, it might have been dictated or also fake. I hear they have been sending many letters and postcards to fool people who know them. You need to do something about this, Mr. Greenberg!”
I agreed with him, but said I could only do so much, and that I had already written and visited a useless congressman about it. Moshe leapt from his chair.
“Then the President!” he cried. “He likes baseball, and you are the biggest baseball star. He will listen!!”
“Well, I’ve actually been thinking of doing that,” I said, “But first we have this tough trip through the eastern cities, and when I’m in New York, you can bet I’m going to set things straight with this bastard Ruben Glass—or whoever he is.”
Those sons-of-bitches. I got your back, friend.