I have a few suggestions to anyone who is reading this: 1) whether 17 or 70 if you don’t keep a diary start one right now  2) take pictures, take pictures, take pictures 3) in your diaries put down everything that is going on in detail and 4) on pictures put information with complete names, exact dates and locations and happenings.

I find reading my diaries 45-50 years later I have forgotten why, and who to, I put entries and on pictures I forget people, places and things. Alex was my roommate for almost 2 years and I can’t/don’t remember his last name!!! With Joan and Addie (I remember Addie’s last name–Kaplan–but not Joan’s!!!)  I remember wearing the red jacket, that in 2 pictures were were in Miami Beach and I assume the other was taken in their co-op.

There are  many references in my diaries to events that I have a hard time as to the ‘why’ of them or what happened. A good example are a few things that happened to, with and about Bernie!


Throughout my life I accumulated ‘families’, people I cared for and people who cared for me. From 1967-1969 my family consisted of Joan, Addie, Alex, Ronnie, Bernie, Joe, Albyn, Joe the Greek, Charles, Perry, Flo, Dick Hershey, Eleanor and a few others, not to forget Noel who I met on Christmas Eve 1968, brought home to Bernie as a Christmas present and it turned out he lived 2 floors above us! Over years some have died, in fact most have died such as Ronnie, Bernie, Flo, Joe, Albyn or ‘disappeared’ but I have never forgotten any of  them.

I was still in touch with my brother and his family going up to Suffern, where they lived, like on May 5, 1968, and then 2 months went up July 21st for my nephew’s Bar Mitzvah (OMG! He is almost 60 with a family of his own–how did that happen?!?! LOL) or was it August 18?, but on an everyday basis–with Flo, Perry, Joe the Greek, Joe and Albyn living in Miami Beach–Ronnie, Joan, Addie, Alex and Bernie were the ones who made up the core of my New York family.

Skipping ahead a little when it came time for me to decide whether to move to Memphis, and go into business with Bernie, Joan, Addie and Ronnie were against it and when I decided to go they insisted I get in writing from Bernie exactly what I would be getting from the business. I didn’t listen to them which caused me a lot of problems a few years later but more about that when (IF!) I get to the 70s!


I’ve looked through my diary notes but I still can’t determine if I met Joan or Addie in one of my Weight Watchers classes, not that either was that fat, and then met the other but the three of us had a connection from day 1. Addie was a fashion designer and a ‘couckie’ one while Joan was the one in charge and reigned Addie in when she went to far. They owned a co-op (or was it a condo?) on 7th Avenue near 14th Street which is near the Village and we spent many weekends walking, and eating, down there. During the first 6 months I have many entries regarding the 3 of us doing things and, many times, Ronnie, Alex and/or Bernie joining us. They had us over for dinner and we reciprocated. It was a good, close friendship. I did the facebook, google searches but came up with nothing about them.


Bernie was doing a lot of traveling for Weight Watchers plus he had many weekends that he spent with his daughters so I had plenty of free time to get into trouble and I did! To a certain degree we had an ‘open relationship’ though more than he suspected or, I think, wanted to know.

The first ‘date’ I had with Bernie I threw him out of a cab on Fifth Avenue so our relationship had to go up from there and it did. On his birthday, June 19, I had a party for him inviting Alex, Ronnie and his ‘friend’ to have dinner with us at Dan Dowd’s and then went to the Latin Quarter. It wasn’t the first time I pulled this but I got drunk and ‘disappeared’ to the baths.

The next day Bernie told me he was thinking of leaving Weight Watchers and going into business with Irene and Florence-two ladies also associated with WW. I vaguely remember his using this as a ploy to get a raise at WW but instead he was offered a franchise with them and accepted without discussing it with me but that would come later.

Bernie and I went to Miami Beach over the July 4th weekend where he met Flo who, privately, put thumbs down on him. On July 15, 1968, I quit working lunch at Miller’s. July 26-28th came to New York to see shows before they took their yearly trip to Europe and we went to see the original production of “Boys In The Band” which was causing a sensation and Augsut 1 I started work at Dan Dowd’s .

I don’t know where, when or how I met Bernice and David Adelman–I think they came to one of my classes–but all of a sudden they were wining and dining me and my friends! Also on Sept. 8, 1968 I, and 5 others, went to see Olga Guiloot and Celia Cruz at Lincoln Center which brought back memories of Pepe who first introduced me to them.

And then 2 events happened in October that was to set me off on a different course 1 year later.



Posted June 26, 2012 by greatmartin in Uncategorized

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