By Chaim Amalek

One of the advantage of writing under a pseudonym is that one can say pretty much whatever he damn well feels like saying without fear of the consequences of offending others.

It takes a man with tefillim (read "balls," for the unchurched amongst you) of steel to use his true Christian name to do otherwise and, as became clear to me years ago, Luke Ford is that man. Just consider this: here before you is a Jew who more than anything else in the world, craves acceptance by the Gedolim of American Jewish life, followed only at some remove by his desire for acceptance as a journalist among journalists.

So what does he do? He writes a book that is guaranteed to piss off exactly these groups, and all for the greater good of each. How can you not respect that? Likely the Gedolim of American Jewish life will not.

I first became dimly aware of them when I was a yeshiva bachur (student at a Jewish Madrassa studying Midrash), working a day joy in Mendal Slutsky's Coital Clothery on New York's fabled Lower East Side.

My job entailed drilling holes into the boards of wood then favored by the hyper-Orthodox as a means of introducing modesty into the marital bed. Less religious Jews favored mere cloth; the genius of my boss was in realizing that in the endless struggle to prove oneself more observant than the tzadik next door, Orthodox Jews would move past billowing cloth to more rigid, modest materials like plywood. For this to function, holes had to be drilled (and oh but their size was a contentious matter!), and I was the man with the surest means for drilling such holes into coital modesty shields. But the work was, of course, nothing if not boring, so I started reading the old Jewish newspapers that were lying about.

I began with The Jewish Press out of Brooklyn, and then graduated to the more mainstream papers based in Manhattan. They were all the same: worshipful of power, boring, afraid to tell the truth to the masses of generally ignorant Jews.

Luke Ford is none of these things. He tells it like it is no matter what the consequences. But don't you take my word for it - turn the page, and see for yourself.

"Chaim Amalek" is a Jewish apostate living on the Upper West Side.