Reading for a Change
Why Maslan House?
Joe and Bea Maslan were my maternal grandparents. They introduced me early on to the concept of social justice, although to them it was simply doing the right thing. One of their lessons to me: the moment you start to earn money, the first 10% goes to savings and the next 10% goes to help others.
Neither of them were able to complete the levels of education they would have liked, and together they ran a small pharmacy in Queens, NY. They also volunteered regularly, Joe running local blood drives, Bea serving people through their synogogue. A product of their frugal times, Joe made sure we never left a room without turning off the light, while Bea shook her head disapprovingly if I brought her flowers -- oy, don't spend money on something that will die quickly!
They read every daily paper published in New York City, to get all the news and all the perspectives. While Joe felt strongly about observing orthodox Jewish ways, Bea scoffed at the limitations and enjoyed many a spare rib and glass of wine when we were out, just us two.
When creating an imprint for my new book, CHASING SOCIAL JUSTICE, I was proud to name it after them.
- Laurie Sherman