Homage to Marsha Spector

Growing up, my neighbor was Linda Dormody, whom I still think of as my little sister:

(From Left:) George Dormody, Nancy Hoffmann, Linda Dormody, Mike Doherty

(1954 – From Left:) George Dormody, Nancy Hoffmann, Linda Dormody, Mike Doherty on the Wilmette Village Green

Her partner of 35 years was Marsha Spector, with whom she went to high school and later spent decades drinking, smoking (everything!) and generally raising hell. On August 15, 2013 (naturally, Julia Child’s birthday, one of Mar’s heroes), Marsha gave up the battle and paid for all those years of smoking. She will be sorely missed!

Linda (aka Dorm or Dormo), however, has sustained several heart attacks (one in Marsha’s hospital room!), had a lung removed, and suffers horribly from osteoporosis, in spite of her athletic past (she inherited it from her mom). She has shrunk four inches as her vertebrae collapsed a few years ago, and has suffered agony for several years as a result.

You’d think that would slow her down, right? Wrong! Linda has more “gumption” than anyone I know, and while she has (to her regret) given up smoking, she still carries on her tradition of F-U-N.

Since Mar died, I’ve talked to her every week, and I know I’m a better person for knowing her. We strive to make each other laugh, and generally succeed beyond our best hopes.

In the 1970s, I participated in a lot of the “MarLin” craziness, and can remember (at least) two restaurants we put out of business as a result of our antics. Lucky me! They lived life on their own terms (Dorm still does), without a single regret. That was a couple worth knowing!

They adopted for my mom when she was in her 80s and 90s — and blind — and kept her busy, happy, laughing, eating well, and drinking(!) almost till the day she died. I couldn’t have asked for better sisters! (Thanks especially to Mar! You always had great coupons and were a fabulous cook, too!)

Here are some photos celebrating their recent retirement to Naples, FL, where they bought a beautiful condo and kept up the traditions until Marsha succumbed last year. I hope to visit in the near future and help Linda continue in her unrepentant ways!

It isn't easy being the princess!

It isn’t easy being the princess!

Marsha Spector: THE Jewish Princess

Marsha Spector: THE Jewish Princess

Classic MarLin: They made us all laugh!

Classic MarLin: They made us all laugh!

The FL Gang: Marsha, Mary Ellen, Peri, Susie, Dorm.

The FL Gang: Marsha, Mary Ellen, Peri, Sue, Dorm.

Off into the sunset, headed for the Gulf of Mexico.

Off into the sunset, headed for the Gulf of Mexico.

AJ, Mar's nephew. Such a Spector!

AJ, Mar’s nephew. Such a Spector!

Zoë Spector, Mar's niece (2011: HS graduation). Looking just like Mar at that age!

Zoë Spector, Mar’s niece (2011: HS graduation). Looking just like Mar at that age!

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About Nancy

Nancy Hoffmann began studying Zen Buddhism in 1992 and has dedicated this site to meditating on what she sees and believes. She is not averse to sharing laughter as well.
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