Tag Archives: bet on crazy

A Jew Canoe

< In the 50s crackers from the South christened a Cadillac with New York plates passing through Dixie as the ‘Jew Canoe’. That decade and the 1960s marked the zenith of the glory for Detroit cars. Americans abandoned their boats during the 1973 Oil Embargo for more fuel-efficient foreign cars and the Mercedes-Benz sedans surfaced […]

KOSHER PIG by Peter Nolan Smith

Two years ago business in the Diamond District was almost non-existent during the high holidays of Rosh Shananah and Yom Kippur. The Hassidim disappeared to the various shetls scattered around New York and tourists entered our diamond exchange to gawk at the diamonds and jewelry. At least twice a day out-of-towners asked in complete seriousness, […]

THE EXTERMINATING ANGEL OF PASSAICH by Peter Nolan Smith

When Cecil B. DeMille’s THE TEN COMMANDMENTS was released in 1956 and its box office success earned the cinematic retelling of Exodus over $180 million dollars. In 1962 Paramount Pictures re-released the film for screenings at drive-ins across the nation and my father loaded my brothers and sisters into our Ford station wagon to view […]

Memories Of Palestine

Several years ago I was getting gold chains on 47th Street to show a customer at the Plaza Hotel store opened by Richie Boy. Business was slow at the exchange and the older gold dealer asked with a Levantine accent, “Where are you from?” “Boston.” No one in the Diamond District had ever asked my […]

St. Valentine’s Day Massacre / BET ON CRAZY by Peter Nolan Smith

Every Valentine’s Day diamond dealers and jewelers on 47th Street anticipated a winter spending spree by lovers for their loved ones, but each year of the 21st Century the sales numbers dropped drastically, as the economic downturn cut into everyone’s surplus, but the rich. Valentine afternoon in February 2011 shoppers crammed the chocolatiers along 5th […]