...A Champagne Bubble & Potential Trouble

Sometimes life has a way of balancing out those things which we'd rather not acknowledge under the surface. In the case of the "Silver Hairs", though their love was strong and clearly evident during their life together, there was always a hint of discord which lay beneath.

During the first half of their 14 years together, marriage was the core problem which lay unresolved between them. He wanted it -- she didn't. But after a long romantic courtship, and then a brief volatile period of separation, she agreed... and they did in fact tie the knot in a very quiet, simply understated ceremony downtown at City Hall.

With pre-nuptial signed and surface problems seemingly resolved... they did for the most part, live ever-so-happily... but not necessarily happily ever after. For just as her initial hesitancy and worst fears were shared, and trust was eventually established, it was breached just days after her passing as Joe completely and selfishly back-stabbed his beloved by ignoring and dishonoring (and contesting) her Last Will & Testament.  Using the court system, he initiated what would turn out to be a fight to his own grave chasing the very thing he lived most of his life in pursuit of -- a dollar and a fortune to be found around the law and above and beyond any moral, ethical consideration for his fellow man, woman,... or wife.

In a story as predictable as it is sadly humorous, Joe played out the final 14 months and 17 days of his life fighting for an unfair share of Estelle's family legacy and that which she painstakingly sought to preserve for her children after a lifetime of careful and meticulous estate planning. For better or for worse,... in sickness and in health,...the Park Avenue Pair lived and died by the dollar they spent their lives saving & spending in such totally opposite and different ways.  As culturally "American" as it is "New York Jewish", it is also a story which continued in their absence and into the next generation.

It is the story of 21st Century human nature and the contrasting economic situation we find ourselves sobering up to in the world today. And it will be told in all it's full rich glory -- as it represents so many values being lost and found in America today. Estelle and Joe were iconic in their own creative and passionate ways... but tragically fell into the same traps all too commonly laid by money, power, and what can happen when communication breaks down between two people, families, or entities.

To be continued.... and hopefully healed, resolved, or at least laid to rest in peace before the cycle begins all over again.