In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Feb. 1, 2010 / 17 Shevat 5770

An Artist Who Never Wanted to Be an ‘Idol’

By Mitch Albom

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | When someone told me J.D. Salinger had died, I jokingly asked, "How do they know?"

It was dark humor and a tad disrespectful. But I was trying to be complimentary. Salinger, who was even more passionate about his privacy than his writing, had managed, at age 91, to die a legend in both areas.

That's right, kids: This man actually tried NOT to be famous.

Salinger wrote one book that people talk about, one book above the handful of others he penned. It was called "The Catcher in the Rye." Chances are you read it sometime during your adolescence.

If you're in your 70s now, you might have read it on your own, as a rite of passage, a book that spoke to you of the angst and restlessness of youth.

If you're in your 30s, 40s or 50s, you likely read in high school, as an assignment.

If you're in your 20s or younger, you might have studied it in English class, or maybe downloaded it to see what all the fuss was about.

"Catcher in the Rye" spoke to a Cold War America about values, life and youthful identity. Its protagonist, Holden Caulfield, is a teenager expelled from prep school, and the book, told in his uniquely sad, caustic, sensitive voice, talks about dreams, "phony" people, distrusting adults, and one day wanting to build "a little cabin somewhere with the dough I made and live there for the rest of my life" away from "stupid conversation with anybody."

Which is exactly what J.D. Salinger did.

Now, it's hard for the young to imagine a writer selling 60 million copies of a book and NOT wanting to do "The Catcher in the Rye, Part II" or "Catcher! The Video Game." But Salinger, who had been ambitious as a young man, quickly lost his taste for it. After a while, he ordered his photo removed from copies of his book. He told his agent to burn all his fan mail. He eventually moved to the woods of New Hampshire, on a 90-acre spread, and resisted all attempts to contact him. His life became one big "No Trespassing" sign.

Ironically, that only made him more legendary. Reporters tried and inevitably failed to get an interview. Publishers tried and inevitably failed to entice him to put out more books.

And hearing that he died this past week without ever giving in makes me admire him all the more. Salinger never swallowed this capitalize-on-your-fame command that Simon Cowell and YouTube have turned into an American birthright. He never even sold the movie rights to his most famous work. The more fuss people wanted to make, the less interested he was. The last written work to carry his name was in 1965. Then he stopped.

He was 56.

Letter from JWR publisher

Because of this, some people saw him as nuts, a kook, a whack job. I didn't. He never told anyone not to read his books. On the contrary. That's ALL he wanted them to do.

On the other hand, many of us now think if you sing a song nicely, there needs to be a reality show about your life. You tell me. Who's the crazy party?

Salinger once told a reporter he loved to write and continued to do it, but publishing was an invasion to him. "I write just for myself and my own pleasure," he said.

If so, he is a truer artist than most.

There's a line that Holden Caulfield says in the book. He says, "People always clap for the wrong things."

Salinger wanted people to clap for the right things, his stories, not his private life, his interviews or the movie version of his work. I admired him for that. And every time I see a Paris Hilton story or an "American Idol" audition, I admire him even more.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

"For One More Day"  

"For One More Day" is the story of a mother and a son, and a relationship that covers a lifetime and beyond. It explores the question: What would you do if you could spend one more day with a lost loved one? Sales help fund JWR.

Comment on Mitch's column by clicking here.

Mitch's Archives