I used to work at The Franklin Institute Research Laboratories in Philadelphia. I worked for a man named Bernard E. Epstein. Maybe once or twice a week he’d ask me to go out and get him lunch. The requests were short on repertory.
He would either ask me to go to the Kennedy House, an apartment building in downtown Philadelphia that had a deli on the street level or The New Franklin, which was around the corner from The Franklin Institute.
If he sent me to the Kennedy House, his request would always be the following: “Get me a roast beef on rye with a little mustard, and a cream soda, if they have it.” In fact, the Kennedy House always had cream soda. I don’t know what I would have done if the deli didn’t have any cream soda — but, as I say, that eventuality never arose.
If he sent me to The New Franklin, his request would always be the following: “Get me turkey on a Kaiser roll and hot tea.” I don’t remember what he wanted on his turkey sandwich.
I started working at the Franklin Institute on July 13, 1970 and I left in the summer of 1979. That was a lot of lunches for Bernie.
You know, he never said to me, “Here kid, here’s five dollars. Buy yourself lunch.” But I live to serve.