“Who the heck is this curmudgeon?” wondered David Sillen, 72, of Middletown, New Jersey. A semi-retired creative director, Sillen stumbled across an article about “this guy who’s complaining about everything.” When he looked at the man’s photo, he said, “Oh my god, It’s Bernie. It ain’t nobody but Bernie.” Sillen realized the curmudgeon was his former neighbor, schoolyard buddy, school and Hebrew School class mate. The two of them would walk to the James Madison High School in Midwood, Brooklyn, every day.
David also realized, “It wasn’t about being a curmudgeon. It was about Bernie being so passionate about his feelings. And I sat back and said, you know, the guy’s right. He’s really right about this stuff.”
But back to the early days.
Bernie the Athlete: Sillen and Sanders played sports together and he’s still impressed by Bernie’s athletic abilities. Sanders was the captain of the track and cross country teams and, recalls Sillen, “one of the best distance runners in the city. He was more of a guy who led by example… before a meet he didn’t get us all together and give us rah rah talks. Nobody practiced harder than Bernie. Nobody tried harder than Bernie when we were in meets. And most of the time he came in first.” He was also a very good “school yard athlete,” who played “stick ball and punch ball and slap ball and ringolevio.” Sanders was “a good school yard basketball player. He was a very tough rebounder. He was skinny and had long arms.”
Bernie the Mensch: Sillen said, “When I say he was a regular guy he was a regular guy. He was a mensch.” And, unlike others who have made it and left their menschitude behind, Bernie has stayed mensch: “If you were born Jewish and in Brooklyn it was in your DNA to be a Democrat and liberal. A lot of the guys we grew up with who became ultra-successful and ultra-rich — I’m sure left that behind. But Bernie took it to the nth degree, I guess. A lot of us are still liberal Democrats and we support him wholeheartedly.”
Bernie the schoolgirl crush: Given that Bernie was such a mensch and such a great athlete, it should come as no surprise that he was considered a catch. “As a matter of fact we had our 50th high school reunion and when he started running for president we started getting all kinds of emails and texts from girls admitting that had crushes on him.” And why not? “He was a good looking guy. Not vain in the slightest… He was a good student… He was a little on the shy side.”
You can hear the entire interview with David Sillens at Talk Bernie to Me, the new podcast from Babes for Bernie.
Can you spot Bernie among the Bernie Bros in this photo of David’s Bar Mitzvah? We will let you know tomorrow. But feel free to guess in the comments!
As a hint, this is Bernie’s yearbook photo, which he signed for David.
Trump just lost another effort to try and block Manhattan DA from from getting his financial documents
President Donald Trump has lost another case against Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance, who is seeking the president's financial documents as part of a grand jury case looking into possible bank and tax fraud.
Trump had fought the subpoenas in court but the judge threw out his complaint Thursday morning, meaning that the case can move forward and that Trump must turn over the financial documents requested.
Last month, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Trump is not immune from criminal prosecution and that he must comply with subpoenas. Vance had sought records from the accounting firm that Trump uses as well as Deutsche Bank, which has loaned Trump millions over the years.
Trump aides scrambling to hide his ‘dumpster fire’ poll numbers to keep him from ‘flying into a rage’: report
According to a report from the Daily Beast, aides to Donald Trump are doing their best to keep him in the dark about his terrible poll numbers prior to November's election out of fear of his wrath.
With the president's poll numbers plummeting in a match-up with presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, White House staffers and campaign officials are trying to keep the president calm while at the same time working to turn around a re-election campaign that is floundering.
‘I have a son and I want you to meet him’: Anderson Cooper chokes up welcoming his baby to the world
CNN anchor Anderson Cooper announced on Thursday that he is now a father.
"It has been a difficult time in all of our lives and there are certainly many hard days ahead. It is, I think, especially important in these times of trouble to try to hold on to moments of joy and moments of happiness," Cooper said. "As we mourn the loss of loved ones, we're also blessed with new life and new love."
"On Monday, I became a father," Cooper revealed. "I am a dad, I have a son, and I want you to meet him.
He introduced Wyatt Morgan Cooper to CNN's viewers.
"He is sweet and soft and healthy and I am beyond happy. As a gay kid, I never thought it would be possible to have a child, and I am so grateful for all those who paved the way and for the doctors and nurses and all those involved in my son's birth."