Meet Professor Menachem Stolyar

“Yanky, can I ask you for a favor? I wrote a book on mathematics, and I’d like to get a copy to my old professor. He lives in New York today.”

Meet Professor Menachem Stolyar.

“I’ve been teaching mathematics at the University here since 1978. About 15 years ago, I began wearing a Kippa and beard. It wasn’t easy. Thirty years ago, such a thing wasn’t even a thought, and twenty years ago I could hardly imagine it.

“I think to myself, ‘maybe someone will see me dressed like an observant Jew and realize that Jews are not really evil.’ Sometimes you have no idea what kind of effect you can have on people.

“As it turns out, a student once approached me and asked when Yom Kippur was. I had no idea he was Jewish.

Menachem hands me a package.

“Here’s the book for my professor, along with his address. I brought something for you, too,” Menachem says as he pulls a bottle out of his bag. “I made this berry-infused vodka for you. Come again soon.”

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