Saturday, October 18, 2014

Shavua Tov

     Sometimes seeing all the happy families together can be depressing. I almost felt that way this yom tov. I say almost because halfway through my pity party at shul I saw the other side of someone I envied. Someone who seems perfect and seems to have the perfect life is not so perfect. One of her angelic children was acting not so angelic and she was not so angelic toward that child. That was all I needed. I am no longer envious of her . I still would like to have a family but I am no longer envious of hers . I am embarrassed to say that sometimes when I actually see that someone else's life is not as wonderful as I once thought, I feel better. I wish that I could just say that I saw all of the happy families around me at shul and still felt content with what Hashem has given me without just feeling better about my lot because I was given proof that someone else does not have it as good as I had thought they had. 

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Is this the UWS?

     Occasionally throughout the years people would comment after I told them where I live and say "Oh, the singles building" I of course would look at them like they had 3 heads because  what I notice about my apartment building is all of the young couples.  Others have called it the kollel building or the yeshiva, which I would call more accurate.  Fast forward to this week. I have noticed that there are more single people on my floor than couples. To say there are more singles than couples is an understatement. There are three apartments with couples and seven apartments with singles. Oy . The singles are taking over in Brooklyn . Now we know there is a single's crisis. That or perhaps the city is getting so pricey that the single and frum have deserted to Midwood. A  sad state of affairs.

Monday, October 6, 2014


   I am posting these two videos together because they are both Shabbos related.
      Anyways , its interesting to see Paula Abdul embracing her heritage. I do not know if she will become shomer Shabbos, but I think its cool she is giving it a try. I know that those in charge of the Shabbos Project are hoping everyone who makes the effort to keep Shabbos this one Shabbos will continue to do so. I think that it is a wonderful way of raising awareness about Judaism to non- Shabbos observing Jews. I also think that it would be great if reform and conservative synagogues would promote it as well. They would not really be promoting keeping Shabbos as the Shabbos project suggests, but it perhaps it would get some of the Jews who attend their services to become more involved. Though it would be amazing if everyone would be fully shomer Shabbos, everyone is not going to be just because we want them to. Then again there is such thing as baby steps and it is not all or nothing. Just because someone is not completely observant it does not mean they should just throw in the towel as some extremists are so quick to  say. A person has so start somewhere and every mitzvah a person does has value.
      Finally  I will devote a few words to the 'shabbos app' that threatens to invade Shabbos as we know it. I am not so sure it is really halachically correct and if it is it would be more for an emergency or for a medical doctor to use . Even before cell phones and texting people were tempted by not being able to watch a favorite television show. Before vcrs and dvrs people were even more tempted. I equate the Shabbos app to setting the timer of your tv to go off at a certain time so you could watch a show you may miss on Shabbos. Actually, it is probably more permissible to do this than use the Shabbos App.
       Smart phones are a bigger yetzer harah than the internet on the computer ever was because it is so much more accessible. It fits in your pocket and it turns on so easily. It is easy to get attached . I am not as attached to texting perhaps because I was not a teenager when it was created. I can see how you can get attached to it since its on a cell phone and one can stay connected all of the time. I of course resisted getting a cell phone when it first came out for that very reason. I don't really want to be that accessible to others. Call me anti-social, I do not care. I do have a smart phone now and I use it often and find it a necessity, but my ablility to be off the radar is missed with all this wireless connectivity.
        Whenever there is new technology, there are pros and cons about  it. I like Shabbos because I am able to turn off technology. Its not that I do not have a yetzer harah to want to be connected to technology during Shabbos, but the rested feeling I have after Shabbos because I was forced to find other ways to amuse myself and I was able to turn inward and reconnect with friends would not be possible if I did keep my smartphone on or any other mode of technology. Its so nice to be able to have an actual conversation with people without them looking downward to check their phone, without them taking a call, without the blare of the televison or radio. I want the Shabbos smart phone cover that says MUKTZAH on it  in fuschia  to thwart any temptation of using it on Shabbos. Even if the Shabbos app is permissible I do not think that it is in the spirit of shabbos and I think that its only really ok in an emergency.But thats just me. 

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Mendy J- Sim Shalom (Official Music Video) מענדי ג'- שים שלום

   When we said Sim Shalom  during shmoneh esreh today it made me remember the old men singing it in shul when I was a kid. This video is an update on the tune that they sang in my shul as a kid, but this version is equally enjoyable. With all the unrest in the world this is such a lovely song for peace.  

Wednesday, October 1, 2014


     Fall is my favorite season . When I go outside on a crisp day it feels wonderful. I can finally breathe.  It  makes me feel alive .

Unlike spring, fall always seems like new beginnings to me. Perhaps its because of Rosh Hashannah and the fact that my birthday is at the end of the summer. Maybe its a left over feeling from my school days. September and fall were always the beginning of the school year.
          Whether or not you like fall, I wish you a good fall and a shanah tovah.

Monday, September 29, 2014

American vs Delta

     Since 9/11 less people have been flying. I don 't know that its because they are afraid of terrorists. I think it is more that they have less money due to the economy . In any event there are fewer flights and smaller planes flying to many cities.  Less than a year ago American airlines has sent the smaller jets onto flights to the Midwest city that I often visit. When they first did this unsuspecting me booked a flight with a window seat. Big mistake. A window seat on  a small plane is an invitation for claustrophobia. I think the aisle seats were more money. Now I know why. Unless you don't have a tendency to get claustrophobic  you should shell out the extra shekels for the aisle seat. When I sat in that ill fated window seat I looked so uncomfortable that the flight attendant let me sit up front in an empty aisle seat which also happened to be a preferred seat.
         Though since my claustrophobic interlude last year I have been sure to book an aisle seat on the left side of the plane I have decided to try another airline. This time it was Delta. It has a smaller  space in the airport than American but their planes have plusher seats that are the same measurements as American's.  Unfortunately on either airline some people should be required to pay for two seats since they are so big that they are sitting in their seat and halfway in mine. On Delta there was only one restroom instead of two which was sufficient. No one over five foot five can maneuver in AA's   restrooms on their smaller planes.
            Both airlines have top notch flight attendants. Both airlines have small seats, but Delta's are more comfortable. American has two dinky restrooms and Delta has one roomy restroom. The prices are somewhat equivalent on either airline.  Delta still gives out a tiny bag of pretzels with soft drinks, American just has soft drinks on board.I think that I will stick to Delta for now, but I will still consider American depending on  price and schedule . Its good to have options.