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  • Writer's pictureGail Ostrow

Snap Out of It!

7th grade. I remember his name—Harry Silon—destined to go into the Air Force after we graduated high school. We would meet at Wendell Pond to ice skate and sometimes practice kissing, the way we practiced skating backwards. Our first date was to the Oritani movie theater in Hackensack, a short bus ride across the river from our homes in Teaneck, NJ.

Eating popcorn, eyes on the screen, and leaning closer and closer into each other, he kisses me, or maybe I kiss him. And from behind us comes a SLAP on his shoulder. We were both so startled that for a moment I didn’t recognize my own Grandma Shirley. My mother had driven her to the theater with instructions to watch over me. She bought a ticket, and sat in the very last row. Once she saw where we were sitting, she slowly moved up, row by row, until she was sitting right behind us, in perfect position to thwart his advances.

It was a silent ride home on the bus—with all three of us!


Gail Ostrow is an educator, writer, and community activist/troublemaker working for peace and racial justice.


The ICONIC Snap Out of It!


A message from Susan:

Moonstruck is one of my all-time favorite movies, in no small part because of that epic slap. And of course, Dean Martin's "Amore" in the finale just makes my spirits soar, and hopefully yours as well!

Here are some clips of other great cinema slaps.

Gone With the Wind:

The Wizard of Oz:

And of course, how could I resist?

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