Wednesday, 12 March 2008

A Classy Lady

Esther Fishbein's husband, Morty, had a few good seasons in a row and finally the Fishbeins moved to a fancy, shmancy neighborhood. Being just a butcher's daughter from Brooklyn, Esther was hardly sophisticated, but she was desperate to fit in with her wealthy, high class neighbors.

Now that they could afford it, she was determined to become a real lady. She had her home decorated by the most exclusive designer and paid a fortune for genuine antique furniture. She took speech lessons to lose her Brooklyn accent. For a year, she went to finishing school to learn proper manners and behavior. Finally, Esther decides it's time to show off her new sophistication. But what would be the best way to prove to her fancy neighbors that she was, indeed, one of them? After all, she could hardly invite them to play Mah Johnng. One of her instructors suggests she host a formal tea. She could hire a few musicians to play chamber music; have an English butler serve the tea with little sandwiches. Esther could just picture it! A real swanky affair! So, she sends out printed announcements and invites the ladies to her home.

The day of the party arrives. Her home looks magnificent. The butler is serving. The chamber music is playing. Things are going very well. Esther is fitting right in. In fact, she's the life of the party.

One of the ladies remarks, "Oh! I do so love Beethoven! And Mozart! Don't you just love Mozart?" she asks Esther.

Esther is caught a little off guard. "Oh. Sure. Mozart. I love Mozart. In fact, I just ran into him last week on the A train out to Coney Island..."

Suddenly, conversations stops. The room becomes deathly quiet. The guests quickly make their excuses and leave one by one until Esther is alone with Morty.

Morty says, "I can't believe you did that, Esther! Three million dollars I spend on this house. Six thousand dollars I spend for you to go to finishing school! New clothes! Musicians! A butler! And you ruin it all by saying something like that? How could you be so stupid!? ... Everybody KNOWS the A train doesn't go to Coney Island!!!"

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