Wednesday, July 31, 2013

The Real You

      When I was a kid I grew up with three lively brothers and a much younger sister. When I went to school kids who were in one of my brothers' classes would tell me that he was so quiet. I was dumbfounded. Were we talking about the same person?  It was at that point that I realized that people are often different in a crowd than they are one on one.  This especially applies to dating.
        There are many men who seem very outgoing in a crowd but when you get to know them outside of the crowd they are more reserved . I have dated  men who seem much quieter but once you get to know them they have quite a bit to say. This makes it difficult when people set others up on dates.                                    I am sure all of this applies to me as well. I may seem different when someone meets me than after one gets to know me . Then again, if someone reads my blog and knows me in person they probably know me pretty well.

Monday, July 29, 2013


     When I was a kid staying up all night was one of my biggest goals. I would go to slumber parties and stay up all or most of the night . It was the best even though when I would get home from them I would sleep the rest of the day. Now I'm an adult and sleep is like candy. I can never get enough. I know that I have been writing a lot about sleep deprivation because it is something that I am working on . I have not reached my goal yet but I am on my way. It has definitely helped my weight loss efforts. I lost two pounds last week.

Friday, July 26, 2013

On Alzheimers

     Alzheimer's is  a horrible disease. I suppose the only good part is that they can forget a lot of life's awkward moments that most of us without Alzheimer's would like to be able to remove from our consciousness.
      The other day I met someone whose mother unfortunately has Alzheimer's and is eating too much because she forgets how much she has eaten and just keeps eating. That was something that I had never considered. 

Monday, July 22, 2013

Jewish Garment Worker

I have photographed this sculpture before but I have never gotten this close before. I hadn't realized how uncanny the expression on his face is. It is so surreal.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Celebrities are People too

      Lately I have been listening to podcasts of minor personalities . A common topic is whether or not they read comments on their websites , twitter or facebook pages. Often they do not because some people can be really obnoxious. Not that I never thought that people of celebrity or personality  status had feelings, but I just figured that they thought it was par for the course and did not take the haters seriously. After  reflecting about this issue I realized it made sense. Celebrities are just flesh and blood like you and me.
       I have noticed that  many bloggers have a short sentence about being polite or respectful above the comments section. I think that when things are online and anonymous people think that they can say anything that they want  even if it would torment the person they are sending the comment to. A few years ago I had a very rude commenter so now I have comment moderation. That got rid of the troll. I guess once you have comment moderation you know you have arrived. Until then I hadn't needed comment moderation because I didn't get that many comments anyway. It was kind of a shame  that I had to resort to moderating. Its just that some of the comments made me feel too bad or were inappropriate so I had to moderate. I publish most comments , its just that it helps keep the obnoxious people out .
       Your mother was right. If you don't have anything nice to say , don't say it.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Liberal Arts

     I just saw the movie Liberal Arts  on netflix. It was an amazing movie. Its the ultimate chick flick . Josh Radnor of How I Met Your Mother  fame plays a 35 year old man who meets a 19 year old college sophomore and.. well that is not the whole movie. If that was the whole movie I would have hated it. Its more of a movie about May- December and how you can never go back. You can't be 19 again when you are 35 even if you are dating someone 19, though I know plenty of men will not agree with me. I NEVER  see this being contemplated by a male protagonist in a movie. This may be the only time  it will happen  which is why I am alerting all of my readers of this movie. Liberal Arts is a winner movie. See it now.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Crazy Heat

     Whenever it is hot outside the crazies are in abundance. This heat spell is no exception. On the subway its especially crazy. When you are standing underground and your train finally arrives you scramble to get on and abandon the oppressive heat. The outdoor stations are a little bit better.
     There was almost a fight on my train last night. B"H it was averted. I was grateful that the nine days are over.
   Wherever you are in the next few days be careful and try to stay cool.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Sarah's Key

      I watched the movie  Sarah's Key a few days ago. I had been putting off seeing it because I was not sure if it was going to be too Hollywood and I knew that it would be unsettling.
     Sarah's Key begins when the Jews were being rounded up in France during World War II. A little girl locks her little brother in a closet so that the police won't find him and take him away. She had thought that it was him that they wanted. As it turned out the whole family was being rounded up. The little girl is beside herself when she realizes that her little brother was left behind and no one would be able to let him out of the closet. The determination to free her brother from the closet saves her life. The film covers Sarah's life and the life of a journalist who is investigating what had happened to the Jews of France during World War II.
     The psychological impact of this movie is intense. It is not a true story but its story captures so much despair and horror that one feels slightly ill while watching it. I have the kindle version of the book which I also have put off reading. Perhaps it will be easier to consider now that I have seen the film and know the story.

The Role of Women

     The other day a friend of mine mocked women who are makpid on davening at the proper time of the day for neglecting their children. I found this to be quite absurd. The laws for leniency in certain  time bound mitzvot for women is so women won't feel bad that they won't be able to do things at the proper time because sometimes when women are taking care of their children it can make it hard to do things at the specified time. I totally get this. So often women, especially very frum women , work part time so they are not at home with their kids . They are still not bound by certain time bound mitzvot when they are not with their kids . Maybe there isn't an easily explained reason but its the reason anyway. Maybe women are not  bound by time bound mitzvot just because sometimes women need not to be so every woman is not bound by it. Maybe it is not as important for women to have time bound mitzvot than it is for men to .

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

On Having Children

      To be sure women get the short shrift when it comes to how long they are able to have kids. Biologically after a certain point it just is not going to happen. Men always seem so cocky about this. I find this hilarious. Maybe a woman is not able to conceive a child at a younger age but really men do not have that much longer to have kids. Its maybe ten years longer than women do , but its not unlimited. Perhaps a man could sire a child at 60,  70 or 100 years old but what does that mean? He most likely will not get to see that kid grow up. He most likely won't be able to play catch with that kid. Even if he does get to see his kid grow up he may not be in the best of health. He will be more of a grandfather than a father figure.
       A lot of times older men are seeking much younger women to stoke  their egos. I get that.  In  reality no one has an unlimited time to become a parent. 

Monday, July 15, 2013


     I consider myself  to be a rather non-judgemental person. Live and let live is my motto. Sometimes others feel one is judging them if the other person does not keep to their standards.
     A friend of mine is lax on kashrus. She did not grow up frum so kashrus is a  challenge for her. I would never say anything one way or the other to her. She would not listen to me if I would . The worst part is that she is always mentioning what she eats "out" and verbalizes her rationalizations. I usually listen and shrug and that she should do what she feels comfortable doing.  It always seems she is looking for my approval. She wants me to tell her what she is doing is on the level .I think that she is a big girl and can make her own choices but I can't tell her that her laxness is above board because I don't think that it is.  Her guilt causes her to seek my approval . Usually I don't have this discussion with my non- observant friends. They eat how they want and I eat how I want and we never discuss it,

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Sad But True

     A person often does not appreciate someone or something until they are gone. Unfortunately even if someone were to tell one this before hand it would not help. One often does not understand some one's contribution to one's life until you cannot speak to them anymore. I would say appreciate everyone when they are in your life because life is finite but unfortunately one does not really understand this concept until one is forced to experience loss. Maybe that's a good thing though. If one lived with a dark  foreboding feeling all of the time it would be too depressing to get out of bed. 

Monday, July 8, 2013

The Heat is on

     In case I haven't mentioned it before I will mention it again. I am not a summer person. When the thermometer  reaches anything above 75 degrees I feel like I'm swimming in perspiration. I would rather spend my hard earned cash on ac bills than food. B"H I have enough money for both. Some people prefer to sweat it out all summer not unlike those who use their lack of sleep as a badge of honor. Not me.
     When I was in third grade I went to school in an old building that had not yet been fully air conditioned. There were industrial fans in every classroom along with  the mini fans we kids carried with us. To all you frugal folk out there I will tell you that was not really good enough. One day during minchah shmoneh esrei I fainted from the heat. It was really embarrassing . I for one don't plan on living without out air conditioning if I can help it. Rashes, including heat rash are quite uncomfortable and unsightly. The medication to alleviate them are rather steep. Better to spend money on one's comfort that on medication that is a result of  martyrdom.
         Just my two cents. As usual I am counting the minutes until fall weather arrives. Stay cool!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Doni’s Life and Loss

Doni’s Life and Loss    I read this article today. A friend of mine posted it on facebook, and I think its on aish hatorah's website. Its about a frum family whose son suffered from mental illness and has recently committed suicide. Unfortunately many people suffer from mental illness and this article is a window into that world . It is well written and very sad. I recommend reading this article not because its sad, but to raise awareness and empathy toward others.

Friday, July 5, 2013


     I own a television. I admit that I often watch TV shows on my computer instead of my actual television because its the easiest way to watch shows without commercial interruptions. The other reason is because I never remember what times the shows I like to watch are on so by the time I remember the next episode must be airing I have to watch it online. I also have forgotten how to use my VCR now that the digital converter is hooked up.
      I have friends who like to brag that they do not own television sets. Some say this to prove how frum they are , others to show how non-materialistic they are . I would be cool with both of these reasons except for the fact that I know for a fact that the same people who are professing these platitudes watch TV online. The fact that they don't own a TV is a technicality. They still are watching TV even if they do not own one.
      I guess now when people ask if someone owns a television they can be truthful and say that they don't own one, but they may still be tuning in every night to lots of television all in the comfort of their own home. I guess the question should now be "Do you watch TV shows ?" because you don't have to possess  a television set to watch TV shows.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

I just love Ben and Jerry's Ice Cream

    I just had to post this because I love Ben and Jerry's ice cream.

Happy Fourth of July

    Happy Fourth of July! Its great to have a paid day off of work. Its a great day to have a barbecue and be thankful for living in the United States.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Maharat, Women of the Wall , Orthodox Jewish Feminists, Charedi Men

     There are a lot of Orthodox Jewish women who are trying to change the system. There are the women who want to be a maharat, the women of the wall and Orthodox Jewish feminists. Then we have the charedi men who eliminate women from photos, want women to sit at the back of the bus , have separate sides of the road for women , etc . The fervor of these men and women is remarkable no matter who one agrees with. How can these feelings , attitudes and beliefs be channeled to create an undisputed  kiddush Hashem ?

Monday, July 1, 2013


     There has been much talk lately about the demise of the Conservative Jewish movement. Perhaps they are correct. Conservative Judaism as it once was is fading. Its fading but not exactly. Over the years Conservative Judaism has come to resemble the Reform Jewish movement. However , now there are other groups that are a lot like what Conservative Judaism really was, but with a different name and face. There are "partnership" or "egalitarian" minyans which may have a mechitzah but have men or women leading parts of the services to varying degrees. To me these types of minyanim scream Conservative Judaism.  I think that there will always be the spiral staircase from Orthodox Judaism and beyond. After those who have gone so far from Judaism have intermarried and have become Cultural Jews there will always be another group of those unhappy with the reigning frum establishment that will  form their own branches of Judaism. For better or for worse.