Riding in Cars with Jews

By COREY LEVITAN

Of all the reasons someone turns down a ride I offer them, none will be more memorable than “I’m sorry, but I can’t ride in a car with a Jew.” Jimmy and I were shelf-stackers at the Foodtown in Oceanside, Long Island. After the grocery store closed for the night, we and three others neatened the aisles, either “dummying” (bringing items forward) or “leveling” the decimated shelves. The job paid minimum wage and I was thrilled to earn it. Jimmy, who was Irish Catholic, seemed like a solid dude. He was funny, polite and – the most important thing to me at the time – not a virgin at age 16. And boy, would he regale me with stories of how not a virgin he was.

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