Bert Stratton

For Cleveland Jews, Schvitz Is Must

If you’re a Cleveland Jewish man and have never been to The Schvitz, you are a disgrace. Real Cleveland Jews will regularly malign you, impugning your bona fides.

Anna Soltzberg circa 1951.

Searching for Galicia

My grandmother Anna Soltzberg (née Seiger) occasionally called her grandchildren foyl (lazy). She lived at our house for a while. I called her Bub — short for bubbe. I wasn’t going to call her Bubbe. Too effeminate. Bub was not into baseball; she was into the card game casino, the television show “Queen for a Day” and food — from borscht to boiled chicken to cows’ feet. She could eat. She had “sugar diabetes,” as they called them in the ‘60s. Bub wore bubbe shoes. I couldn’t figure out where Bub was from. I couldn’t even find her hometown on a map.