I was raised in an east European Jewish Socialist working class neighborhood in which few of our parents went to school. I learned street corner wisdom, some of which I still retain, but other aspects of it I long since discarded.


Loyalty is the most important thing in life.

You make a football by rolling up a newspaper, place a rubber band around it, and, voila, a football!

Never rob in your own neighborhood. Go to another neighborhood.

Nuns and priests do IT.

Never fuck with the Mafia.

Playing chess makes you smart.

John Garfield is tougher than John Wayne( his is from the Bronx)

White Anglo Saxon Protestants are rich and hate Catholics and Jews.

If you want a stick to use in stickball, get an old broom, burn off the straw, place the end of the stick with wire into a manhole cover, walk around until that end breaks off, and, voila–you have a stickball bat.

Shout “chickey the Cops” if you see them coming into the neighborhood.

If you can hit a ball longer than three man hole cover, you are a great stickball player. I could.