But that wasn't the worst of it. Before leaving him forever, Orieyenta, Stelzer claimed, stole his prized mezuzah — a tiny prayer scroll that some Jews hang outside their doors. She took it from his home while he lay far away, unable to stop her. In a blog entry titled "The Mystery of the Missing Mezuzah," he offered readers a $500 reward for information leading to the recovery of the precious object.
But the mezuzah has not turned up — except in court documents, where it appears over and over again.
So is Stelzer likely to prevail in his quest for legal vindication? Probably not.
"The courts today, when they get these types of cases, generally they dismiss them out of hand," says Zanita Fenton, a professor who teaches family law at the University of Miami. Love, she points out, is not a contract. "Love is irrelevant to the kind of contract we're talking about."