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Canasta memory

January 3, 2013 - Burt Angeli
Jim Abrahams is the co-creator of “Airplane,” one of the funniest movies of all time. His mother, Louise Abrahams Yaffe, died recently at the age of 97.

Her obituary in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel mentioned marrying Milwaukee area lawyer Norbert Abrahams and honeymooning in Eagle River, Wis. The family would later build a summer home there.

With no television during those Eagle River summers, the Abrahams listened to music, fished and played canasta. That brings back memories for yours truly, who learned to play canasta while working (more like loafing) at the Angeli farm on Iron River’s Iron Lake.

If memory serves, my Grandma Angeli, Aunt Carm and others needed somebody for a fourth to play canasta. With my services not vital to the farm (others could pick rocks), I filled out the group playing cards.

Now back to the Abrahams and Louise. She had a part in “Airplane,” sitting next to actor Leslie Nielsen who was wearing a white coat and stethoscope around his neck.

With an ill passenger, Louise piped up, “Oh stewardess, I think the man next to me is a doctor.” Jim said her mother prepared several days for that one line, with the word emphasis changing constantly.

Thank goodness for blogs where can just remark about anything. Now back to sports ...



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