Die-Hard Ping Pong Players Persevere

This group of die-hard ping pong gamers meet every day on the JCC.

A bunch of ping pong gamers have been gathering for greater than 12 years on the Jewish Group Middle in West Bloomfield.

By Ellen Stone

Featured photograph courtesy of Yakov Faytlin

A bunch of die-hard ping pong gamers on the Jewish Group Middle in West Bloomfield have persevered for greater than 12 years. We play every single day from 9:30 a.m.-1 p.m.

Initially Large Boris, age 67, and Little Boris occupied the precise table, holding rating in Russian, leaving the left table to the People: Sy Borsen, 92, Fred Kendell and Bob Salamon, each 86. When Bob’s spouse, Lila, lately handed away, Fred organized a fund to plant 15 timber in Israel in her honor.

Large Boris got here from close to Chernobyl. Bob, a Holocaust survivor, migrated to China earlier than arriving within the U.S. Fred additionally endured the perils of Germany. As soon as in America, he studied artwork at Cass Tech. His daughter is a museum artist in California.

Sort sufficient to assist me together with my very own artwork, he takes credit score for each piece I promote. Oh, and his jokes, he all the time has one.

Sy was a nationwide ping pong champion till he was disqualified for being too younger. He’s our human ping pong robotic. He has mentored us all.

The staff continues to develop. Now there’s Yury I (Gendelman, 68), a dentist from Ukraine, and Yury II (Kuperstock, 67), a metallurgical engineer additionally from Ukraine. Yakov Faytlin, 72, is a Birmingham photographer. Illyah Dakhmutsay, 67, a Realtor, was a champion boxer again in Ukraine. Whereas ready for a flip on the table, he burns off his uncooked egg breakfast with warm-up boxing routines.

Sasha Shakhim, 72, enjoys consuming 62 selfmade Chinese language barbecue ribs from Hong Kong Ken Wong, 62, a mechanical engineer, the one non-Jewish participant now we have.

Myron Stein, a instructor, supplies film reviews. Lou Brown, 72, a retired instructor and opera buff, who shows his collectibles and memorabilia on the Royal Oak Farmer’s Market, shares CDs from the 1930s which might be performed on a increase field for atmosphere. It’s contagious. Now I take heed to Large Band music at dwelling. So lengthy, Speaking Heads.

Sy, Lou and Bob shaped a Tuesday evening poker group. For one among Sy’s large birthdays, and he’s had loads, I purchased him a sweatshirt that claims, “Ping Pong, Poker, Porn.” His daughter-in-law wouldn’t let him out of the home sporting it, so he retains it in his locker and wears it right here. I hope Stacy’s not studying this.

I traded in my tennis racket for a paddle. The solo girl, I’m simply one of many guys.

We slice and cube. We bear in mind; we overlook — however by no means the rating. We snort collectively, cry collectively. At closing time, once I say, “Bye, guys; I’m going dwelling,” Fred says, “Hey, lady, you’re dwelling.”

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