In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Nov. 6, 2009 / 19 Mar-Cheshvan 5770

Florence Caesar

By Greg Crosby

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | In show business a marriage is considered a success if it lasts longer than the rental on the tuxedos. That's just one of about ninety-nine thousand show business marriage jokes. These jokes can be good for a laugh but they're not necessarily true. Many comedians, as strange as it may seem, have extremely long lasting marriages. Bob Hope, Don Rickles, and Bob Newhart are three examples. And then there is Sid and Florence Caesar, who have been married for over 66 years and in love even longer.

I had the good fortune to talk with Florence Caesar recently at her home. She graciously consented to give me her slant on what it's like living with a comedy genius. When I interviewed Sid several months ago he told me how it was "love at first sight" when he first saw beautiful Florence. He knew right away that this girl was the one for him. On the dedication page of Sid's 2003 book, "Caesar's Hours," he writes, "To my wife, Florence, who taught me how to live, how to breathe, and how to dream." That's some dedication. I couldn't wait to meet this woman.

I arrived a little early for our appointment and Florence wasn't quite ready for me yet, so I spent a minute or two talking with Sid. He told me that he thought it was terrific that I was going to interview his wife and told me again how much he cares for her. He didn't have to say it, it was obvious. His eyes lit up whenever he spoke of her. Soon Florence was ready, so she and I went into another room and our talk began.

Florence Levy was born in the Bronx, New York, the older of two daughters. She met Sid in The Catskill Mountains, at a hotel her uncle owned called the Avon Lodge. It was the summer of 1942 and she was working as a children's counselor at the lodge when Sid came up to perform as a musician. He was not quite nineteen years old and had already been playing saxophone and clarinet for several big bands. I asked Florence if it was love at first sight for her, as it was for him. "Well, I thought he was nice for the summer," she said. "I thought he would be just a nice boyfriend for the summer. He was cute looking and tall, over six feet."

"I was in my last year at Hunter College; we were still dating when Sid went into the service, the Coast Guard. Luckily he was stationed in New York, so we were able to continue seeing each other, even though my parents weren't too happy about it. They never thought he would amount to anything, that he'd never have a real career or make any money. But we were married one year after we met, in July of 1943."

Sid and Florence have three children, two daughters and a son, "Our son the doctor," Florence proudly states. Michele is the oldest of the three, then Rick, and Karen the youngest. They also have one grandchild and another on the way. The Caesars are also animal lovers involved in animal rescue causes. They currently have an 11 year old dog that they rescued.

Florence studied art in college and has maintained an appreciation of it throughout her life. A painter herself, she proudly pointed out several of her paintings to me hanging in their den. They are quite nice. Florence is talented, charming, smart, and pretty. It's no wonder Sid fell for her from the very start. Sid and Florence actually compliment each other perfectly. You might say they have a marriage made in heaven but started in the Catskills.

When I ask her what she might know about Sid that nobody else would know, she smiles and after a moment says, "Well, maybe there's nothing. He's written two books, you know." But then she says, "You know, he's not funny all the time. He can be very serious." Actually I knew that side of Sid. I remember reading how he always admired Albert Einstein and has always had a love for science, especially physics.

It takes a very special woman to live with a talented, complicated man like Sid Caesar. Sid knows this, and has said as much in his two biographies. He credits her with saving his life countless times. Florence has been able to give Sid what he needs. And Sid has given Florence what she needs. For a marriage to endure as long as theirs has, it has to have a lot going for it. Sure, it has to start with love but it must include mutual respect, understanding, patience, devotion, and a lot of other stuff. After more than six decades I think I can safely say the Caesars have all the right stuff.

As I was about to leave, I went in to say goodbye to Sid. He asked me how everything went with my talk with Florence. I told him it went great and that I thought she was a wonderful lady. "Yeah, I think so, too," he said with a wink. It's clear to me he still adores her.

Then he said, "And we've been married for 66 years now! Isn't that something?" I looked at him and said, "Yes, and what's really remarkable is, in all that time NOT ONE ARGUMENT, right, Sid?" There was a pause then Sid threw his head back and laughed. I couldn't believe that I actually made Sid Caesar laugh, the man who has been making me laugh all my life! I knew then it was time for me to leave. I could never top that.

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JWR contributor Greg Crosby, former creative head for Walt Disney publications, has written thousands of comics, hundreds of children's books, dozens of essays, and a letter to his congressman. A freelance writer in Southern California, you may contact him by clicking here.

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© 2008, Greg Crosby