Saturday, October 29, 2011

Peace, Paz, Pax in Takoma Park, Maryland

"Do you know Latin?"

Never know who you’re going to meet standing in front of the Takoma Park Silver Spring Food Coop in Takoma Park, Maryland. While waiting for the school bus, Marash Girl noticed the license plate pictured on the right. When she stopped to photograph the plate, the owner  (who it turned out, is 82) stopped to ask her if she was photographing his license plate because she knew Latin -- No, she said, I don’t know Latin, but I know what your license plate says.  The gentleman explained that his initials spell peace as does the Latin word pax -- and so his message to the world: Peace and Peace, everywhere he goes. He continued.  I fought in the Korean War.  but because I could type, I’m embarrassed to say that I was relegated to a desk in Germany.  The army was so thrilled to have a man who could type; in those days, you know, only women took typing.  Wondering how it was that he knew how to type, Marash Girl asked, Are you a writer?  Yes, he answered.  My book, a human survival manual, is for sale at  There are many survival manuals out there, but mine is the only HUMAN survival manual.   So Marash Girl, curious, went to the website (the only place she could locate the book on the web) and found
                                                                      by Peter A. Zuckerman

1 comment:

  1. Paz Pax is sugar to those who have a sweet tooth,
    and appropo for a man whose name is sugarman (Zuckerman)
    It is the lot of man, it seems, for peace to be written in blood. Tacitus, two thousand years ago, described how Roman peace was wrought...'they made it a desert, and called it peace'. Upwards of 200 million people were killed in the twentieth century, to establish 'peace', or to restore the political peace lost because the heart of men had no peace. The history of communism is one of the shedding of the blood of the many so that peace could be attained for those remaining. It sprung from the logic of, ‘if only we could rid ourselves of those who stood in the way of a perfect peace, of 'peace on earth', we could restore what was lost, long, long ago’. Of course, when Alyosha (Dostoyevsky’s ‘The Brothers Karamazov’)was offered the opportunity to create a surpassing peace by 'The Grand Inquisitor' and all it required was the blood of one new born baby, Alyosha shrank back from the proffered peace, recognizing the Faustian offer for what it was. He understood that there could be no peace on earth, as long as it required the shedding of the blood of man. Interestingly, Dostoyevsky’s ‘The Brothers Karamazov’ was written during a time of great ferment not only in Russia, but also in all of the western world. It was a ferment that lusted after the life of the living, for the redressing of old and present wrongs, a lust that could be satisfied only by the shattering of the bonds of political and social peace. And what have we today? We have the same. We have a ferment growing for.....
    i long for Eden, where there was no blood shed. Peace rose up like a mist from the ground. it watered the landscape and succored the soul. The Peace, of course, was shattered at the Fall, and with it all hope of peace, until the arrival of the Prince of Peace. Unlike all other kings who shed the blood of others to carve for themselves 'peace, 'peace', the Prince of Peace allowed his own blood to be shed, so that man could re-enter the Eden that was lost, and, and once again sing out, 'I've got peace like a river'.