man.rnMs. Lichtenstein: Well, I must tellrnyou that the man part will be troubling.rnSurely, you must have meant “a holyrnperson.”rnRabbi Rosenberg: No, dear lady, Irnmeant man. The Lubavitcher rebbe hasrnalways been a man. It wouldn’t workrnany other way.rnMs. Lichtenstein: Why not? Havernyou tried it? This is, after all, 1994.rnRabbi Rosenberg: Well, for one thing,rnthe Lubavitcher rebbe must have arnbeard.rnMs. Lichtenstein: Anything else?rnRabbi Rosenberg: He wears blackrnclothing. He speaks many languages—rnHebrew and Yiddish at the very minimum.rnMs. Lichtenstein: Well, the dressrncode business is no problem, at least thernpart about black suits. Saks is showingrnsome lovely stuff in black. With thernright kind of eye shadow and some discreetrnaccessorizing, it could work. Irnknow, because I was just there last week.rnBut I should tell you that no judge—rnmale or female—is going to hold stillrnfor the beard business. And I’m afraidrnwe can’t allow you to insist on one, muchrnless two, exotic languages. How aboutrnwe change these to Spanish? That way,rnyou’ll have a better chance recruiting inrnDominican neighborhoods.rnRabbi Rosenberg: Impossible. Arnrebbe who doesn’t know how to speakrnYiddish is not a rebbe at all. No way.rnMs. Lichtenstein: Look, we ran into arnsimilar problem when Hunter Collegernadvertised for a German professor andrnthen insisted that the person know Germanrnfluently. We took the departmentrnto court, and I’m happy to say we won.rnThere was an injunction, an appeal, butrnin the end they settled for a Spanishrnspeaker. Believe me, most of their studentsrndon’t know the difference.rnRabbi Rosenberg: Vis. Lichtenstein, Irndon’t want to sound ungrateful becausernI know you’re trying to help us during arnbad time. But is there somebody else Irncan talk to, somebody who might betterrnunderstand our circumstances?rnMs. Lichtenstein: I was about to getrnto that. You know, the Fair Hiring PracticesrnOffice is only one agency that wantsrnto talk to you people. There are others.rnFor example, I understand that yourrnmovement has been pestering people inrnTimes Square, asking them if they’rernJewish and, if they are, if they’ve saidrntheir morning prayers.rnRabbi Rosenberg: Yes, indeed. Thatrnwas part of the Rebbe’s mitzvah campaign.rnWe have been enjoined to continuernit.rnMs. Lichtenstein:Without a properrnlicense from the Multicultural ReligiousrnPractices Office? I think not. Do yournpeople really think you can buy full-pagernads in the New York Times instructingrnpeople when to light Chanukah candlesrnand simply ignore the rituals of Kwanza,rnor that you can interfere with pedestrianrntraffic on Forty-second Street withoutrninforming people about the Muslim injunctionrnabout bowing toward Mecca?rnNo longer, buddy. We’ve got statutesrnthat cover this. We’ve got laws.rnRabbi Rosenberg: You talk of laws,rnbut what about God’s law? What aboutrnthe Commandments?rnMs. Lichtenstein: Not covered underrnNew York Citv regs, I’m afraid. Whichrnbrings me, by the way, to my last point.rnI’ve been reading articles that claim thernlate Lubavitcher Rebbe was the Messiah.rnThat, too, is prohibited by affirmativernaction guidelines 46-83-C and 47-84-B.rnI’ll enclose copies along with samplernEqual Opportunity Employment forms.rnYou’ll have 4 to 6 weeks to comply fully,rnat which time you’ll be sent a complimentaryrnrecording of “I Love New York’srnGreatest Hits.” Let my office know ifrn}’ou prefer cassette or CD.rnRabbi Rosenberg: I don’t think any ofrnthis will really be necessary, becausernwhen I tell the others what lies in storernfor us in this city, I think we’ll be movingrnto Israel. Crown Heights has never beenrna bargain, believe me.rnMs. Lichtenstein: Well, that’s yourrndecision. But you’ll have to fill out thernproper paperwork with the Departmentrnof Emigration, and you should knowrnthat multiculturalism is an importantrnconsideration there as well. I realizernthat Jews tend to want to go to Israel,rnbut there’s no good reason why settlingrnin other countries—say Nigeria orrnNicaragua—wouldn’t do just as well.rnBut Ms. Adler can explain all this morernfully. I’ll have her call you.rnSanford Pinsker is Shadek HumanitiesrnProfessor at Franklin and MarshallrnCollege in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.rnLETTERSrnJames Branch Cabellrnby Ralph de ToledanornIn a 1956 essay, Edmund Wilsonrnwrote: “Cabell is out of fashion.”rnWithdrawing his dismissal of JamesrnBranch Cabell, Wilson gave him a criticalrnaccolade—and his generosity wasrnpraiseworthy. For by 1956, Cabell wasrnnot only out of fashion but virtually forgotten,rnthough he was not alone in this.rnMost of his contemporaries, more or less,rnhad faded. Sinclair Lewis, for example,rnwas remembered more for his battlesrnwith ex-wife Dorothy Thompson and forrnhis coinage of “Babbitt” as a term inrnAmerica’s lexicon than for his novels.rnScott Fitzgerald, never understood byrncritics still trying to fathom AmoryrnBlaine, had dissolved in a pool of alcoholrnand self-pity. Ernest Hemingway wasrnstill assiduously combing his chest hairrnand flexing his muscles, but he remainedrnvital only because his genius could notrnbe barbered. John Dos Passos, stylisticallyrnthe weakest of the postwar generationrnbut certainly the most pertinentrnand perceptive, had fallen under the onslaughtrnof the “socially conscious” hatchetrnbrigade and an Establishment thatrnfound greater sustenance in the potboilersrnof Howard Fast.rnBut “fashion” is an ambiguous word,rnand time-frames deceptive. Going backrnnot too many years, I recall that as arnpreparatory school rebel I read, alongrnwith equally enlightened contemporaries,rnthe fervent discussions of Cabellrnby Benjamin de Casseres and other criticsrnin books still on library shelves. Irnwrote and published derivative pieces onrnThe Cream of the jest and The High Place,rnnever understanding that the latter titlernlinked it to pagan practices imbedded inrnthe history of the race. Yet to this degree,rnEdmund Wilson was correct, for thernliterary journals of the 1950’s did notrnfluctuate from their concern with therndelicate or muscular expression of Hemingwayrnand his imitators, at least notrnlong enough to give a thought tornCabell’s word. Oddly enough, in thern70’s and 80’s, I noticed that Cabell’srn44/CHRONICLESrnrnrn