I read a very interesting article in the paper today. Seems the New York Times was looking for the Happiest Man in America. They did some research and determined that this person should be Asian-American and Jewish. Plus he should live in Hawaii.

There were some other criteria. He was to be happily married for many years, own his home, have an income over $120K and a dog.

Now to track down this person, if indeed such a person existed. The NY Times contacted the three synagogues in Hawaii to first see if they had any Asian members. Lo and behold, this man belonged to two of them. And not only was he Asian and Jewish, he was also kosher.

In fact kosher cooking is one of his hobbies. That plus a very happy dog.

In the photo in today’s paper, his wife of 35 years appears to be Jewish and he evidently converted to Judaism many years ago. He certainly looked happy in the photo and also very surprised to learn that he is the Happiest Man in America.

Being Jewish and having a name like Alvin Kuo Wong has to be a first. I have lived in Hawaii most of my life and never met a Chinese Jewish man, although the two cultures have many similarities. Great emphasis on family and education.

I always thought I was pretty happy. Let’s see, I’m Jewish and I live in Hawaii but I’m not an Asian man and I don’t have a dog, plus I’m not married and I don’t belong to any synagogue, so I guess I don’t qualify under their standards.

This Asian/Jewish man was supposed to be over 65 and on that score he and I are both qualified. I wonder who the happiest woman in America would be.

If I were to guess, I would say she would be around fifty, with an income of over $120K, very attractive but not married and with no desire to be married. She would have two grown children and a cat. As for her religion, Jewish is fine and as for where to live, I would have to say Las Vegas.

This way she could shop at all the great stores, eat at all the great restaurants and when she wanted to have some entertainment, there is plenty all the time. Best of all, if she wants to have Chinese food at two o’clock in the morning, she can.

Funny, I lived in Vegas for many years. One of the ‘selling’ points’ for being a Las Vegas resident is that you can have Chinese food at 2 o’clock in the morning. But in all the time I ever lived there, I don’t think I or anyone I knew ever ate Chinese food at 2 o’clock in the morning.

In fact, the best thing to eat in Las Vegas at 2 o’clock in the morning is the Midnight Special in any casino coffee shop. This is a menu that is offered from Midnight till Six a.m. Usually the featured item is steak and eggs, hash browns, toast and coffee. When I lived there this was $2.99. Now this same meal is $4.99.

If you are not a steak and eggs fan, you could also get the pancakes/ham or bacon special for $1.99. Or the two eggs, hash browns, ham or bacon special at the same price.

One of my fondest memories is my wedding night in 1957. No, not that. My husband was 21 and I was 19.  We lived in Los Angeles and went to Las Vegas for our honeymoon. Our wedding was at noon, then a luncheon and reception. We left LA at five.

Our car, a brand new beige Borgward with Just Married painted on the side, was not airconditioned and it was a six hour drive. There was no freeway then and the only stop was in Barstow for gas.($3 for a fill up)

It was June 9, and the temperature in Las Vegas was well over 100 degrees, even at night. Not only was I nervous, being a virgin bride, I was dressed in a bridal going away outfit, a linen suit, pearls, a girdle, nylon stockings and high heels. And I was sticking to the leather seat.

Panty hose had not yet been invented and one needed a girdle to hold up the stockings, and those metal stocking fasteners got really hot. My first pair of panty hose was not until 1970, ten years after the birth of my second child.

My new husband was wearing a Dacron suit, dress shirt and tie. He must have been melting. Dacron was the latest material in men’s clothing. Wash and wear. The next day I found him in the shower, wearing his suit and washing it.

The car was $2000, the same price as a new Ford or Chevy, but this German car was made of tank metal and very solid. We had really wanted a Volkswagon, but there was a nine month wait. (Like for a baby.) Plus they only came in red or blue and you didn’t get a choice.

When we got to Las Vegas we were starving. In those days it was a must to go out for the Midnight Special at the Silver Slipper.

We checked into our hotel, the Tropicana, (newest and tallest hotel in Las Vegas) and we were on the top floor. That was the third floor. Next stop, the Silver Slipper. I was too young to go into any casino, but I was old enough to get into the Silver Slipper coffee shop. Wow! 99 cents for two eggs, ham or bacon, hash browns AND pancakes. Those were the days.

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