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For Christmas, all I wanted was a new dreidel
For Christmas, all I wanted was a new dreidel

The New York I lived in as a kid was a village of four or five blocks. I could wander anywhere my curiosity took me, safe and secure and knowing I'd still find my way home. I could go around the corner to the barber shop and get a trim for a quarter. I could walk a block farther to Moisha's butcher shop, where I'd purchase that night's meal with money my mother had given me, then carry it home, proud and possessive. And when I was 5 years old, I went to the neighborhood movie theater, the Surrey, for the first time by myself. Ostensibly, I wanted to see a film that just didn't belong in the shtetl where I lived: "The Bells of St. Mary's," in which...

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