Monday, December 29, 2008


ive been tagged to do a meme. im not sure exactly what it means, but ill do my best.
the rules are to turn to page 56 of the nearest book and include the 5th sentence and then write down the 2nd to 5th sentence . and of course tag others to do the same.
the book i chose is the book of dahlia by elisa albert. here goes:
"danny found his calling in comforting and entertaining his baby sister. it got so that dahlia couldnt be put down for a nap or bathed or comforted after a boo-boo unless it was by danny. bruce and margalit watched incredulously as their total #*&%* of a little boy morphed into his sisters adoring caretaker. danny would play dolls with dahlia for hours on end. he read to her, he made up private preverbal jokes with her, rushed home from school to hang out with her."
by the way, im only up to page 55 .
the rules are to next state 7 facts about myself and then tag others and link them . and to leave a comment on their blog saying they've been tagged.
fact 1. i have verrry curly hair.
fact 2. i chose the name frum single female to be kind of like single white female, nicejewishgirl or maidel ,if you catch my drift.
fact 3. im a very creative person. i enjoy crocheting, photography and writing ( well i guess you know that one)
fact 4. im one of the many who have been a shabbos counselor at bais ezra . bais ezra is a group home for mentally retarded jewish women in boro park, brooklyn.
fact 5. my favorite colors are pink and purple.
fact 6. though i do own a cell phone, i hate being out on the town with friends who answer their cellphones and have long chats with others that are not urgent calls.
fact 7. i love reading silly magazines like allure, self , glamour. im not a reader of vogue or cosmopolitan.
and there you have it. i was tagged by mikeinmidwood, and dys. ill link to fruminsouthflorida, webgirl, katrina, onefrumskeptic , lubabnomore ,smoo, levadi

Sunday, December 28, 2008

the last night of hanukkah....

i was at union square tonight and i heard music. the music of chabad lighting the menorah. so of course i located the mitzvah tank and snapped photos. i of course found something quite interesting in the process. the mitzvah tank was right behind a whole obama-memorabilia concession stand. unwittingly, it looked like obama was endorsing chabad's mission to spread yiddishkeit. quite funny and wholly not intended!

Friday, December 26, 2008

its all a set-up.

in the shtetls of eastern europe the shadchan was all the rage. i think that in shtetl culture where basicly everyone knew each other this was probably a valuable venue. in 2008, almost 2009 , im not too sure that it is.
a shadchan usually meets her client once and then tries to "set them up" . how can a shadchan set two people up without knowing them and expect it to work out. i suppose if one goes by the "you never know " cliche, then perhaps. but usually its alot more like spinning the dice or playing paper scissors , rock.
my answer to those who abide by the "you never know " cliche is "oh yes i do". once in awhile by accident a shadchan might make a shidduch with that theory, but one cant rely on the consistency of happenstance.
when a shadchan so nonchalantly asks me my age i am always inwardly estimating their age. only once has a shadchan told me her age during one of those shidduch interrogations. i think all shadchanim should do this. and of course we'll just add 10 years to their answer ....just to be safe.
with shadchanim 40 is the new 30 and he has been 30 for the last ten years... at least...
shadchanim ask their clients for references, but of course they never check them out. they leave that to their lowly clients. though i would trust my investigative abilities over that of a shadchan , i still dont quite understand why they dont do reference checking before setting someone up, just to be sure they arent setting up an axe murderer. arent they afraid of lawsuits?
i spent much of my twenties going on shidduch dates. by the time i turned thirty i decided that there has got to be a better way. so ive tried the dating websites and singles events. these venues have not yet found me my zivug , but at least i feel more in control of my destiny than when i solely relied on others to scope out my zivug.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

would u date a blogger?

the blogosphere can be a fun social outlet . but what if this fantasy outlet of ours became reality? what then ? would you consider dating a blogger?

you read a blogger's blog if they have one. you read a bloggers comments if they are only a commenter. you get to know them a little. but is this really who they are? you only get to know the part of them that appears online. unless a blogger has an honest photo of him or herself online, you only get to know them as through their words. their words might only be an act. then again , if you meet someone in real life their words may be just as oscar worthy .

i do prefer to keep my blogging life separate from my real life (yes, there is a difference), but interacting with blogging singles has taught me a thing or two. there are some weirdos out there, and some who are immature, but there are also alot of thoughtful and insightful bloggers out there. i may never meet any of them in real life, but its nice to know they exist on the blogoshpere.

however the spirit moves you

i dont remember which year it was when i started hearing people chant "happy holidays" instead of "merry x-mas". im glad the change has taken over, even though when people say "happy holidays" they always seem to mean x-mas and goyeshe new year's and not Hanukkah. no matter, i still prefer deluding myself in to thinking that "happy holidays" includes "happy Hanukkah". its kind of like including your photo in your jdate or frumster profile, you get a "no thank you " letter and you assume its that they didnt like your profile when they probably just didnt like your photo. aint delusion grand.

when i say " happy holidays" this time of the year i mean "happy whatever holiday you happen to be celebrating". and if im totally honest, i have a little ethnocentrism and really think im wishing everyone a "happy Hanukkah" when i wish someone "happy holidays" .


Monday, December 22, 2008

gelt vs gifts

some say Hanukkah gelt is more jewish than Hanukkah presents. i for one will be happy to accept both.

i wont pretend to know definitvely why this is , but i personally think that getting hannukah gelt is the same as getting a Hanukkah present. perhaps bubby and zaidy didnt know what to get the grandchildren for Hanukkah one year, so they settled on giving them a little gelt and thats how the whole tradition of Hanukkah gelt started!

is gelt more jewish because jews are greedy?

gelt is a gift because anything i have to write a thank -you note for recieving is a gift in my book.

perhaps Hanukkah gifts are exchanged due to the juxtposition of x-mas and Hanukkah. so the young-uns wouldnt get jealous. no matter. its not assur to exchange gifts on Hanukkah (although im sure some scroogey rebbe must think it is). if it is its a well kept secret. ( that hopefully will stay that way).

i wish all of my readers a happy Hanukkah, lots of gelt or gifts, whichever you prefer!!!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

a rose by any other name...

one of my favorite shows is that seventies show. i always wondered what fez's real name was. i think i had missed the episode when he came to town , told everyone what his name was and then everyone decided to call him fez because no one could pronounce his real name. i can relate.
when i came to new york i found it really funny how people pronounce certain letters and insist that this is the proper way. the new york way isnt the proper way. newscasters always affect a midwestern accent because its easier to understand thank you very much.
when i first heard the last name kaufman pronounced 'cow f man' instead of 'cough man' i was really glad that kaufman isnt my last name. i realize that 'cow f man ' is the german pronunciation and is probably the "proper " pronunciation , but it just sounds so awful . and who wants to have a last name that has the word cow in it if its not necessary?
on 90210 the andrea character wanted her name pronounced 'ahndrea' instead of 'and rea'. and she was lucky because both are easily pronounced by her fellow californians. but what do u do when the pronunciation of your name is really difficult for the inhabitants of your new city to pronounce? what then? what happens when the way they pronounce your name sounds like nails on a chalk board? then what do u do? what do u do when they insist the way they say your name is the way it should be said? EXCUSE ME!! are you inferring that i dont know how to pronounce my own name, you of little intellect? i of course offer alternative pronunciations that arent as abhorrent to my ears. most people are cooperative. some arent. which is quite rude.
i really feel for those who have foreign names that no one can properly pronounce. thats even worse. at least some people are able to pronounce my name the way i like to hear it said.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

the reader

tonight i saw the movie the reader , based on the novel by bernard schlink. i had attempted to read the book years ago, but it was rather slow moving. i couldnt get through it. the movie is quite riveting.

i saw the movie today upon the strong recommendation of a co-worker . fortunately i only vaguely knew the storyline before seeing the movie. i knew that it was the story of a much older woman having an affair with a much younger man (or shall i say boy, he was only 15 ) in postwar berlin. kate winslet is the older woman. david kross is the younger man. i got so caught up in their love affair, that the progression of the movie caught me by surprise. which im sure was the point.

i dont want to give anything away, but the movie deals with right and wrong and various levels of right and wrong.

ralph fiennes and lena olin shine as the supporting cast. kate winslet is chilling as a woman with a past. david kross' blue eyes alone speak words.

the movie is is also quite disturbing. see it anyway. i dont want to give anything away,because i want you to be as swept away by the story as i was.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

yummy pictures

i just downloaded some pictures from my new digital camera and i thought i would share them with you folks. enjoy.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

older than the trees in the forest

when i was growing up my mom would always say that she was older than the trees in the forest. years later she said that she didnt really care if my siblings and i knew her age , its just that sometimes kids blab and she didnt want the whole world discussing her age.
my grandmother on the other hand had a different tactic. she was always 29. although at some point we kids figured out she couldnt be 29 if our dad was 33 (dad being a guy ,revealed his age). grandma looked good for over 29 , but she didnt look younger than my dad.
when i was in high school my mom came up with the concept of how she wouldnt mind attending my dad's high school reunion, but she didnt want to attend hers. she would look like "the young wife" at my dad's reunion, but at her own reunion the men's younger wives were younger than the women who had been in their graduating class.
as a kid i didnt quite grasp this concept, as an adult i do.
there was a gem of an episode on the john laroquette show where john went to a party and met a woman who appeared his age. when he asked her for her number she told him she didnt usually date men his age. this of course put poor john in a tailspin. he suddenly was looking in to plastic surgery. in the end the woman revealed her real age , which was significantly older than john. the woman had alot of work done which kept her well preserved.
years ago i met a shadchan who said that its okay to lie about ones age by two years because if someone found out the truth, two years wouldnt be a deal breaker.
one must be careful when lying about ones age. if you say you are 10 yrs younger than you are, you better look it. if you dont people will catch on. its probably better to say you are older. this way you will look great. if you are really 30 but say you are 40 , everyone will say"gee, he looks really great for forty!" if you are really 30 and say you are 25, but you look every inch like you are 30, you arent doing yourself any favors.
as for me... well.. im older than the trees in the forest, and thats my final answer!!!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

seatless subway cars

i heard the most awful news a few days ago. i heard that they want to eliminate seats in subway cars during rush hour. they will make folding seats in the train and lock them during rush hour so no one can sit. i stand all day at work, so at the end of the day i am so tired i must sit. they say that only 4 out of 10 cars will be this way, but it stinks. in the current new subway cars there are less seats and less bars to hold on to . a few days ago i noticed that there is a bar on the ceiling for people to hold on to. well im 5 ft tall. i cant reach that. i think that people will start bringing portable seats or start sitting on the floor if this plan really goes in to effect. it seems so third world.

the thought of even more people on a rush hour subway car is frightening. more weirdos pressed against you. the current new subways have spaces in the front of some of the cars that are seatless with little place to hold on. whenever im on a crowded car my only solace is of the possibility of getting a seat. if the train is crowded the only place to be is sitting, otherwise its too claustrophobic. i have an hour commute. its really tough to have to stand the whole way. i think that if this is the wave of the future i may end up shelling out the extra dough for the express bus.

my question of course is what time of the day will be considered rush hour.... ?

i usually go to work at odd hours and avoid trains during rush hour.

seatless train rides would deter me from going to the city other than for work. the idea of standing an hour to get there and not being able to comfortably read a book or crochet is despicable. this is something that would make me leave the tri-state area.

i think that if there was a terrorist attack on the subway they would get to kill more people this way, and make it much harder to evacuate.

it seems so barbaric not to have seats on the subway.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

hannukah fever

im really looking forward to hannukah. i love the latkes and lighting the menorah. i love the parties. i love receiving a little hannukah gelt. im not keen on the Israeli jelly donut.

as a kid i loved attending community hannukah parties , where they would give cute gift bags to all the kids. my favorite toy was those little dolls that would be in a bottle shaped like perfume and they would have the scent of tea rose.

my mom would save all of the prizes found in cereal boxes and make a grab bag during hannukah. this would cut down on fighting over who got the prize from the cereal box during the year. before my mom did this we would take turns getting the prize from the cereal box, but i think we would still bicker, so she decided to do the grab bag thing.

one hannukah i was at union square and the lubavitchers were playing music. an obviously non-jewish woman was prodding her non-jewish child to listen to the music. she said to him "its music, appreciate it" it was really cute. it was like being in an alternate world where hannukah is the holiday of the majority and x-mas is the holiday of the minority.

i like the fact that there are so many major department stores in ny that include hannukah in their holiday windows. im including a photo of a menorah that was in Bloomingdale's' holiday window december 2006.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

you are so that type

a few weeks ago alot of blogs shared the link of the . i actually checked it out and its quite cool. it tells you what kind of blogger you are (if you have a blog that is). anyway, look up this blog and check out what it says. type in other blogs and see what their "type" is. according to typealyzer, im a doer. which according to typealyzer is the active and playful type. they are especially attuned to people and things around them and often full of energy, talking, joking and engaging in physical out-door activities.
the doers are happiest with action-filled work which craves their full attention and focus. they might be very impulsive and more keen on starting something something new than following it through. they might have a problem with sitting still or remaining inactive for any period of time.

hmmm..... well.... some of this is true. i actually have a job that is very action-filled that claims my full attention and focus. and i always like getting out , being social and taking advantage of what new york has to offer. i dont often sit home on a saturday night.

unbearable thoughts

its been a week since the attacks in mumbai and i am still disturbed by it. how it happened to the people of india as well as those murdered in the chabad house. i am also in awe of those firefighters who rescued people from the hotel in the taj mahal, even when they were instructed not to by their superiors. at great risk to their own safety they rescued 3oo people. i am equally in awe of sandra samuel the nanny who saved the baby of the slain chabad rabbi and his wife. equally miraculous is how this baby lived through this at all.

in the new york's jewish week rabbi menachem mendel nemes , a yeshiva teacher in crown heights was quoted as telling his students that" if this group can cause that much destruction in the world, imagine if that size group got together to do good deeds." this my friends is the truth . this is what is wrong with the world. so many pool their energies for evil instead of channeling them toward good. what an incredible world we would live in if only good was channeled instead of evil.

however... all is not lost. hatikvah-hope is in the essence of the jewish people. we must have hope that good will prevail over evil and that there will be total and complete shalom someday soon.... very soon...
as for those freaks of nature who say to the world "maybe now they will understand" when a terror attack happens to someone who isnt jewish "GET OVER YOURSELVES!!" its equally evil to revel in anyone suffering such a brutal attack. one should wish that peope learn compassion for terror victims in a peaceful manner, not by reveling in others misfortunes. i heard frummies say this after 9/11. to me they almost seemed happy. many jewish souls were lost during 9/11, yet they were happy to pontificate their mantra of "maybe now they will understand" . well folks, i surely dont understand. reveling in harm to others just "so they will understand" is childish and definitly not frum.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

simply tsfat

this past thursday i heard the israeli breslover group simply tsfat perform. their music is truly uplifting. the first time i ever heard them was at the jcc in manhattan. they had the whole audience dancing . this past thursday was no exception.

simply tsfat should be performing in brooklyn tomorrow night at the jewish music cafe in park slope at 7 pm. i think that they are in baltimore this evening .

for those of you who wont be able to see them live,they do have some of their songs on itunes and they have some great cds. i have the cds new beginnings and never give up.

the world has been so topsy turvy lately. music is so uplifting.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

december in nyc

one of my favorite pastimes is frequenting the holiday markets in nyc. now there are at least four locations where red and white booths are set up filled with many crafts and fun gift items. bryant park, columbus circle ,union square and grand central ( the only one that is indoors) . though some vendors frequent several of the markets, each location is unique and has its own aura.
though none of the markets are as cheap as amazing savings, there are some reasonably priced items to be found. the grand central holiday market is the most upscale, the other three are less so.
one of my favorite jewelry booths at union square is 3 fish. liat baum , the designer has some really funky and fun jewelry. semi-precious stones and sterling silver jewelry. im not sure how long this designer has been in business, but i do remember her booth at the 42nd street craft market years ago.
another favorite booth at union square and( once i saw them at columbus circle)is litchi accessories. they have an incredible variety of israeli jewlery. their specialty is israeli opal and israeli moonstone jewelry. they can be slightly pricey, although there is a range , and some stuff is reasonable. its fun just to check out the jewelry. its truly beautiful.
2 angels is another booth at union square with great stuff and a variety of prices. they also have a store on 67th street on the east side in manhattan.
alexia crawford and nemesis jewelry both started out at the holiday markets and the 42nd street craft market. together , alexia crawford and nemesis hit it big with laila rowe. when they were only doing the holiday markets and the craft market on 42nd street they had silver jewelry and semi-precious stones. nemesis had the most exquisite pendants .now laila rowe is mostly costume jewelry. though i miss their old inventory, i think its incredible that they hit it big with laila rowe.
the jewelry found in these markets are better than anything i might find at a department store, and many are whooping it up in these craft fairs right before they make it big and get their own store.
years ago there was an incredible booth at union square that sold handmade wooden clocks. they were alot of fun. unfortunately the woman who made them isnt there anymore. there is another booth that makes handmade wooden clocks and travel alarm clocks called pink cloud. this booth is in bryant park this year.
framed memories is a vendor at bryant park that has the most unusual picture frames. they feature action figures on the frame . some frames have action figures who look like they are viewing the picture in the frame. there is a frame with a flasher facing the frame. there are lots of romantic frames as well. a just married couple on the frame, a proposing couple on a frame, and a couple on a bridge. there is an adorable bud vase that looks like a glass tube left over from chemistry class with a cute couple on either side .
this year there is a booth at union square that sells solar powered flashlights and cell phone chargers as well as crank flashlights and radios. these are amazing items. no need to buy batteries. i remember the blackout in new york a few years ago. its nice to be prepared.
our name is mud usually has a booth at all of the markets. they have alot of jewish themed gifts , like latke platters and even matza platters.
hands for peace t-shirts that feature the hamsah are back at union square . they are quite unique. if the vendors know you are jewish they will show you the cool hebrew phrases and jewish symbolism in their t-shirts.
there are many more cool booths to check out at these markets, ill let you know when ive checked them out.
its especially fun going to these holiday markets as a jewish person. im mostly buying gifts for myself, or for others for the rest of the year. i do buy a few Hanukkah gifts, as well as holiday gifts for co-workers, but for the most part its just a time to enjoy looking at unique gifts and chatting with alot of fun and creative people.

Monday, December 1, 2008

beyond kosher....

often those who used to be frum ridicule the mitzvot because they feel they are so confining and archaic only to replace them with equally obscure rituals to replace them with. a campy old movie that demonstrates this issue is the imported bridegroom. the imported bridegroom is a movie about an american jewish family at the turn of the twentieth century. the father wants his daughter to marry a torah scholar who he imports from the old country. of course the daughter has no interest . she would prefer a doctor or a lawyer. eventually this bridegroom metamorphoses and pseudo- Americanizes. instead of remaining a talmudic scholar, he becomes a philosophy scholar.
some trade kashrut for veganism. they feel kashrut is archaic, so they trade it for the more limiting veganism. while vegetarians dont eat meat , and are often in to animal rights, a vegan takes it the extra mile and doesnt eat any animal or being by product. no eggs, dairy or honey (a bee-ing product). i lack the convictions of a vegatarian, but i can understand why they might not want to eat an animal. i dont understand the need to limit animal by products or the concept of insect abuse. vegans dont eat honey because they feel it harms bees??? this is beyond kashrut, and possibly an advertisement for kashrut. kashrut isnt as limiting.
of course , go tell a newly converted vegan this!! perhaps its the thrill of individualism that sparks these food fetishes more than idealism. after all , a major reason for kashrut is to keep us jews separate so our goiyeshe neighbors wont come for dinner that might lead them to marry our jewish daughters.