Sunday, August 31, 2008

my mexican shivah

despite lukewarm reviews i went to see the movie "my mexican shivah" tonight. i thought that it was a very humorous and charming movie.
the movie is about a jewish man in polanco, the jewish quarter in mexico city, who dies , and the shivah period that follows. it shows how everyone family is truly nuts, but they are still your family.
a most heart warming scene in the movie is where a yiddish, not necessarily well known song played in the background during the shabbos scene. not something ive recalled in an american movie.
the most original scene is where someone asks someone to bless them and that someone recites asher yatzar.
because this movie is such a comedic farce it did not seem too melodramatic. its a movie that can be enjoyed by both jews and mexicans alike.
needless to say , i highly recommend this movie.

Friday, August 29, 2008

getting to know you....

though people are very different, there often are much similarities. ever meet someone with the same voice as someone else you already know? or who reminds you of someone else you know? i have. all of the time. sometimes ive met people with the same accent or mannerisms as someone in my past. i try to be careful not to assume that they are just like that other person. especially when that other person might be someone i disliked very much. not that you shouldnt be cautious, but dont assume too much. its best to get to know each person on their own merit.
i recently had a co-worker who had a similar look to an ex-roommate who wasnt the greatest of sorts. im not saying to ignore one's intuitions, but just because someone has the same physical attributes as someone else in one's past or present, it doesnt mean that their personality is like that other person from ones past or present.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

i dont get it

i know that there is a jewish concept of not being the one to spread bad news, however, i think that often people take this concept a bit too far.
often people dont want to tell others the news that someone has passed away fearing its just such sad news. my personal favorite " they will hear about it anyway because everyone is talking about it" well i have news for you. they arent all talking about "it" .
recently my friend's mom passed away and although someone had actually informed me about it and and the shiva apparently others who were close to her were not informed. i found this out when i casually mentioned this to a few friends and assumed they already knew . well guess again. they did not know and had i not told them they might not have known until months later. as it turned out they found out too late for shiva , but they did find out on time for the memorial that was held for the shloshim. had i been worried about "spreading bad news" my friend would not have had support from these friends who i had told. and it was too bad that i had assumed as others do that "someone must have told them" because no one had.
a few years ago a friend of mine passed away and i told many people about her passing. several visited the shiva house on my account. would it have been better not to have told anyone ? would it have been better her friends not have gone to pay their respects? of course one could say that these friends must not have been so close to not have been informed of her death. this would be this case. however , it did matter to these old friends to join in the mitzvah of menachem avel. is it better not to spread bad news even if it will cause someone to do a mitzvah?
one could argue that it would be better for a long lost friend to visit someone during ones life rather than making a friend's shiva top priority. though this a thought to consider, it still doesnt cancel out the importance of menchem avel. its important for the family of the deceased to feel that others have been touched by the loss of their loved one.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

hakaras hatov

very recently tragedy has hit an acquaintance of mine who is single. as much as ive been kvetching about being single and everything else under the sun, i truly am thankful and happy to be alive. life can be so fragile. without life there is no hope. with life there is hope. even though one may not have yet achieved one's life's goals, if one has life , one has a chance to achieve ones goals.
life is full of surprises as well as much disappointment, but so long as there is hope... then its all good.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

changing of the guard

its always so interesting when someone one works with everyday moves on to another place of employment. especially when that someone is someone one would only be friends with because one works with them. the first day they arent at work one doesnt even miss them. this can even happen if one was friends with this person at work. usually this happens with someone one is only friends with because one works with them, but wouldnt be friends with otherwise. even so, its always alarming. life goes on surprisingly smoothly!
i had one work friend who i was glad left my workplace. i think that we are better friends now that we dont work together.
as apathetic to co-worker turnover as i am, i did actually have one co-worker that i really missed after we stopped working together. we have kept in touch, but i knew that it wouldnt be the same after we stopped working together. we really ran in such different circles it was destined to happen.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

battle of the bulge

my quest for weight loss continues. ive lost 7 pounds since may. not the quickest weight loss, but its definitely a solid 7 lbs. what is my weight loss secret you ask? CUTTING OUT THE JUNK FOOD.
generally my eating habits arent too bad. my major weakness is sweets.
im gratified that my efforts have been netting results, i just hope i can keep it up.
oh... and i have been continuing my quest for more sleep, but my sleep hrs per night still are not where they should be. i still believe that if i improve in this area my weight loss momentum will improve.

Monday, August 18, 2008

would you date someone you know?

everyone goes to singles events trying to meet someone new. someone no one has met before. as if it was not possible that one could actually become interested romantically in someone one has met already.
now the truth is sometimes one has friends of the opposite gender and that is all they are and all they will ever be. end of story. other times this is not the case. this is when things can become dangerous.
once one crosses the line from being just friends to having an actual dating relationship with this person there is a huge possibility that if it ends you will not be able to return to the way it was before. and yes, this has happened to me. and it sucks. however, if it were the right someone i would take that risk again. after all , who doesnt want to be a true friend to someone one is in a relationship with? who wouldnt want to marry someone who could be one's best friend? someone who has been one's best friend?
i have taken this risk before and lost big, but it was worth it.
im not sure that i know anyone at the moment who id want to take that risk with, but i just wanted to put the idea out there.
its just so awful to attend a singles event and have people say that it was a bomb because everyone knew each other.
so often its taken meeting someone several times at singles events before someone decides to ask me for my number. sometimes its taken meeting some guys several times at singles events before they seem in my mind like an actual consideration. the point being sometimes one needs to get to know someone better in order for both parties to be interested. sometimes its not just love at first sight with someone one's never met previously. and sometimes its better that way.

Saturday, August 16, 2008

to greet or not to greet

where i grew up , outside of new york, people were so friendly. one would walk to shul on shabbos and people would be gardening and they would say good morning even if they didnt know you.
when i first moved to new york and i would great random frummies "good shabbos" as i walked down the block they would look around to make sure that i had really meant to be greeting them, since i didnt know them. b"h , things have changed. about five years ago my single friends and i were walking down the street and some teenage girls we did not know wished us a "good shabbos" . none of us were related t0 them. i think that perhaps there has been a project to encourage ahavas yisroel and actually greet one's coreligionists on the street on shabbos. or perhaps its a happy coincidence, but somehow i dont think so. over the past several years ive noticed that people have said "good shabbos" to me before i have said "good shabbos " to them.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

more subway madness

being one who likes the comfort of continuity, its sometimes jarring when change occurs. more specifically jarring is when this change occurs on the new york subway system. i do not appreciate the new trains on the Q line. i never liked the design of the 4,5 and 6 trains, and i like it even less on a train i have to ride daily.
the new Q train looks like the 4, 5 and 6 trains. there are long benches on either sides of the subway cars. i like the current design of of the orange seats that have seat divisions. its easier to anchor ones self during turbulence on the orange seated trains. i find myself sliding uncontrollably on the newer long bench version.
the new trains dare to have a digital display of the upcoming train stops. the problem is whoever has devised these displays hasnt yet learned the train routes . i was on the train today when the digital display said we were going to be stopping at grand street, a station that the Q train never stops at. lo and behold the announcer announces that we will be stopping at grand street next. next thing we know, we are at canal street. the stop that were actually supposed to be stopping at. they actually tried to fix the digital display which next announced that we would be stopping at ocean parkway in brooklyn instead of the real next stop that was union square. they tried to correct themselves by next announcing that we would be stopping at w. 8th st, also in brooklyn! as we were pulling in to the station the conductor finally announced that we had reached union square. so much for technology!!
i do admit that i never laughed more during a morning commute, but i would prefer less drama. the mta can convert these new trains in to much needed homeless shelters and we can keep the current/older train design.

summer apples

at the risk of making myself sound like i originate from the backwoods, i will share this memory...
when i was small my family had an apple tree in our back yard. it was really cool being able to just pick an apple off the tree and just eat it. my mom didnt even make us wash them before eating.
the apples on our apple tree were of the green variety. until this week i hadnt had an apple like the apples from that apple tree since i was eight years old. yesterday, at the union square green market i purchased green apples marked "summer apples" which tasted just like the apples we had on our tree. it was an amazing experience. munching on that crispy apple transported me to that space in time.

Monday, August 11, 2008

a small advantage

i have always wished i would have been a few inches taller than i am. over time some of the negatives have turned into positives.
because i was a petite kid, i was always mistaken for being much younger, which as a kid can be quite annoying. no sneaking in to r rated movies for me! of, course at this late date, im glad to be mistaken for much younger.
in my opinion tall senior citizens seem much older than their petite counterparts. i think that when someone sees a tall older person, who was once this strapping force of youth, now a hunched over older person, its a much greater contrast to someone who was always short who has aged.
when a petite person gains weight one will usually still fit in to standard sizes. when a tall person gains weight they need to head over to the plus size section.
this in short is a small (person's) advantage.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

the importance of self confidence

self confidence is such an important midah to have. self confidence, not to be confused with arrogance or cockiness.
it is important not to base one's self esteem on other's opinions of one's self. if someone else thinks one is less than, it doesnt mean one is actually less than. its all well and good to be well liked, but if you only feel accepted because others accept you, there is a problem.
i have some friends who only think they are good people if they are in a relationship, if not they think that they are zeroes.
in my opinion, if a guy doesnt think im fabulous its his problem. if someone isnt in to me im doubly not in to him. of course maybe my lack of concern for others opinions is my problem....
maybe this is why i am still single . who knows. all i know is that love should be a two way street, and if it isnt , its not meant to be. i want to know someone wants me out of his own volition, and if not , the heck with him.
as that great old poem goes.... if you love someone set him free. if he comes back to you he was always yours. if he doesnt, he never was.
i also like the alternative ending : if he doesnt come back, hunt him down and shoot him.
without self confidence it would be hard to keep a job. one has to believe in one's own ability to succeed. to succeed in life, love and on the job.
this, in a nutshell is self confidence.

Monday, August 4, 2008

buzz.. buzz...

today i was flipping through people magazine ( my most reliable news source!) and i noticed an article about possible bee extinction. apparently , over the past 25 years there has been an over 50% decline in the bee population. this of course is a bad thing because one in three bites of food relies upon the pollination of bees.
normally i wouldnt pay any mind to such an article , but today i did. recently i had the pleasure of viewing jerry seinfeld's bee movie, which dealt with this very issue. if bees do not make honey or pollinate their up to 30% of this nation's food supply, we may not have berries , nuts or watermelons and much, much more.
researchers think that this decline in bees may be due to pollution or parasites. what do these bees know that we as people dont? why dont they want to stick around?
if one little bee can effect the world so deeply, imagine how each person effects the world.
and of course watch the bee movie. after tisha b'av. its cute and apparently more educational than i ever imagined!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

no big surprise

my presidential voting poll is over. i see that mccain was the big winner. no big surprise here. anyways, i still havent decided who i will vote for.....

Friday, August 1, 2008

the meaning of life

when i was a kid i never understood why my grandparents would get all dressed up when they went to school plays my siblings and i were in. i recognized that they loved us and wanted to be at our performances, but at the time i did not understand why this was so important for them.
now that im older and hopefully wiser, i understand. life is crazy and the most important things in life are the joys one has from one's friends and family. this is why they had honored me and my siblings so much. they knew that the joy we gave them was so important.
one doesnt have to be a parent or a grandparent to experience this. one can shep nachas from one's nieces or nephews, or by being there for one's friends. its the human connections that gives people reason to stay alive.
life would be difficult if it had to be done entirely solo. ones family and family of friends add joy to ones mundane existence.
my grandparents knew this.
and so do i .