Hebrew teacher seeks patron through online auction

new york (jta) | Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart had one. William Shakespeare had one. Now, David Harris-Gershon of Washington, D.C., wants one.

A patron, that is. The aspiring writer is inviting prospective patrons to find him — on ePier, an online auction site. Browsers at the Web site, which posts more than 1,000 offers of all kinds — from appliances to farm equipment, adult toys to wedding gowns — can find Harris-Gershon’s offer in the category, “Other.” It stands out among a plethora of items and services being hawked, typically ranging in cost from a dollar or two to figures in the three-digits. Harris-Gershon’s asking price is $100,000.

That’s the amount he figures it would take to send him back to school full time while maintaining his family — his wife, a toddler and new baby (due in March) — for the next several years, until he obtains a master’s degree in fine arts, with a focus on creative writing.

A Hebrew teacher of five years, the past three at Jewish day school in Maryland, where Jamie, his wife, teaches, Harris-Gershon, 31, says he began writing seriously within the past year and a half. He favors essays, memoirs and poetry.

To date, no bids have been submitted. He has, however, received “tons of email,” he said, in response to his posting and the publicity since he first told the AP his story.

“Most of the emails are encouraging,” he says, noting they come from people who wish him well — but, “there’s been a smattering of hostile emails,” too, he admits.