When my father's father was a young man, he decided to legally change his name. No longer did he want to be Hyman Stein. He thought "John Styn" had a more gentile ring to it. (No need to broadcast that Jewish ancestry to everyone, right?)

After changing his name, Grandpa Styn kinda fell out of the whole Jewish worship scene. As a result, my father never went to temple while growing up. But even though he never had a bar mitzvah, my Dad is definitely aware he's Jewish.

And even though it's been generations since my family had a Kosher set of dishes, I know that I'm Jewish, too.

December 03, nineteen99