Thursday, March 29, 2007

Why is this knight different..?

Pesach is all about the kids..
We all become kids again..
And just as kids like to involve all their senses in everything they do..
We do the same..
We listen to the story of our birth..
But like kids..
We also insist on touching..tasting everything..
And we re-enact our History..
The good the and downs..
The sweet and bitter..
And we hide away one small piece..
We keep it hidden...until we're exhausted..
and we take it out proudly...
And trade it in for our ultimate present..

Have a Happy Pesach..


Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Food Chain

I find Chol Hamoed to a big Nisayon in tolerance and Ahavas Yisroel.

However I must say that I like the idea of renting out big huge parks and circuses and having just frum people, an idea that has become popular these last few years.
Let's face it we are a unique cultural phenominon and while we might certainly appreciate our fun loving and leibidig disposition, not everyone does. I'll never forget at the Auto Show at the Javitz Center a few years ago (which foolishly usually ends up during Chol Hamoed) this sweet American Couple was actually interested in an SUV there and they opened the back seat, only to find a family of 6 crowded in the back with open silver foils all over eating lunch.

So, I'd spend half the day nervously whispering..stop it!..chillul hashem!!..and the other half apologizing to horrified scandinavians.

Now, I breathe alot easier.

However to pre-empt any negative feelings you might feel toward any segment of our community I've reposted something I posted last year after Chol Hamoed.

Print it out and read it every 20 minutes during your trip.

I’ve discovered that I’m part of a very disturbing food chain.

After another exhausting Chol Hamoed trip we were sitting and recounting details of our sojourn..
As usual there were disparaging remarks about Chassidim eating all over and being pushy etc..
Then during the meal on Yom Tov a conversation came up about how Chassidim cheat the government on taxes and they don’t work...etc..
I passionately hate these conversation and everyone knows it. I think that it's always wrong and unfair to stereotype.

I realized then that we’re all part of the insecurity food chain...

Whatever right wing Frum people say about Chassidim..
Modern Orthodox say about right wing Frum...
Whatever Modern Orthodox say about right wing Frum people
Non Orthodox say about all Orthodox
And whatever Non Orthodox say about Orthodox
Non-Jews say about Jews...

So next time you’re about to feel all superior by trampling on someone who is supposedly “superior than you”..
You’re just a small ring in the food chain and at this very moment some anti-semite is probably saying the same exact thing about you to his children.


Thursday, March 22, 2007

The Kiruv Ballet

“Hello Minero Jewelry..
Yes come in Rabbis, Steve will be right with you”.
The two young, good looking Rabbis from ______ sat down on the plush couch, their polished black shoes on the polished mahogany floor as Tchaikovskys Swan Lake echoed through the hall at just the perfect volume.
Yakov and Shimmy were right on time for their Corporate Lunch learning session with Steve Golden CEO and Seth Hauer the young Vice President of Minero Jewelry one of the the largest watch manufacturers in the world.
Yakov turned to his partner and said “it’ll really be cool if we can get Steve to come to our corporate Pesach seder”.
“I know” replied Shimmy, we already have 2 other CEOs signed up, but he’s really big. By the way when should we schedule our under 30 yuppy trip to Israel for?”
“I’m not sure, Karen is checking the flights and hotel vacancies.” “I know ______ is planning theirs for October, I don’t want to lose that crowd y’know?”

“Hey guys come on in..”
“Steve” exclaimed Shimmy with a hearty handshake and a slap on the back..
“Seth, good to see you.."
They entered the large ornate office attache cases in hand and took their seats.

Unbeknownst to them, just 30 feet away on the grimy side of the south facing wall, under the din of heavy machinery sat 42 year old Greg, toiling away for minimum wage, sweat pouring down his face. He was able to work in peace, headphones blaring ethnic music into his ears.
You see no one seemed to be fighting for his soul.
Just not cool enough to be mekarev..



Wednesday, March 21, 2007


In honor of the first day of spring..dedicated to my wife...

Like small seeds
Sometimes needs
To be placed within
Some dirt to begin
Its journey
The primal earth
Your everything
Your very being
It does grow
Often slow
Colors concealed
............. Revealed

Winter comes
Flowers die
Icy patches..
Lie the seeds
The bulbs
The memories
Don’t let it freeze
Love will blossom


Monday, March 19, 2007


Ok. I confess I have this terrible addiction..and it's making my blogging life suffer. I'm not sure what to do about it.
I'm addicted to real life...and I feel it's taking too much away from my blogging life.
What is the draw in this thing called real life?
Ok..I concede..wife, children and sustenance are pretty important...
But besides for's quite harmful to spend time with real live people in real live situations..which can be frough with so much angst and problems.
When was the last time you caught a cold from someone online?
Why would I limit my interactions to the few people within 5 feet of me when I can interact with anyone..anywhere?

I'm working real hard to overcome this...compulsion of mine..really...


Wednesday, March 14, 2007


David Abramson hated this part of his day.
26 years 4 months and 11 days that he’s been taking the F train into Manhattan every morning. With his drab grey suit and worn expression he fit into the swaying environment. Scratch grafitti, advertisements, white ipod headphones and Mr. Abramson all swaying to the clitter clatter of the tracks in silent commune.
March 14th followed March 13th because that’s what March 14ths are supposed to do. This was the type of stability he relished. And on this March 14th he took his seat under the map of the NYC subway system, his left ear aligned with Coney Island. The train was emptier than usual. His small brown eyes scanned the train slowly, analyzing each of his fellow riders. There was the usual smorgasbord of Russian women, Latino teenagers, Frum businessmen and Asian hipsters. All except for one person sitting directly across the way who looked terribly out of place. He’d never seen someone so big before. The man mustve been at least 6’8 and as broad as an oak tree. Dressed almost completely in black contrasting his slicked back white hair and brilliant, piercing blue eyes. He sat there staring directly at David almost completely blocking the advertising for The Bahamas behind him. Davids eyes would normally start closing after 5 minutes of getting to mentally know his mates but this man would not let him sleep.
Mercifully after 3 stops the giant stood up to duck out of his world into the dark station beyond the opening doors. But just before he stepped out he looked at David and nodded as he handed him his newspaper. David whispered a flustered Thank You and placed it on his lap.
It was a New York Post and the Headlines read Alberto Gonzalez Resigns. He thought that was strange as none of the radio stations reported that in the morning. It was then that his face paled a few shades as his eyes scanned the date March 21,2007. His head jerked around out the window as the train pulled out slowly but his giant was nowhere to be seen. He opened to the next page, his fingers shaking and started reading. Story after article after article..section after section..The Rangers are out of the playoffs The Nets are in..People murdered..fires..accidents yet to happen. He felt his chest tighten as if this huge burden had been placed on his shoulders..should he warn people that will die in 6 days time? What should he do with this information?? Perhaps he shouldn’t be playing with fate..the last thing he wanted was to be the subject of some bloggers science fiction tale of a man that changed the course of the world.
Then he closed his eyes leaned back and laughed, this must be a joke. Some sick prankster with nothing better to do but print fake papers and drop it on harried looking passengers. He folded the paper tight but just before he got off he jotted down next weeks lotto numbers on a small piece of paper and stuffed it into his pocket hurriedly, looking around as if the whole world knew his secret.
After exiting the train he placed it into the closest garbage pail and it dropped down onto a bed of rotting food leftovers.
However there was one section that he neglected to read as most of us neglect to. We don’t like to read the obituaries, to remember and think about the strangers that used to inhabit the seats next to us on the train. That is truly a shame for had he glanced at that page he would’ve read the 3rd listing from the bottom

David Abramson, 52
Found slumped over
in his car in the parking lot
of the Lottery Commision
of an apparent heart attack
Leaves a loving wife and
3 children.



Monday, March 12, 2007


Thou Shall Not Take The Lords Name In Vain
Can prove to be quite a pain
When talking or writing a blog all the same
We tiptoe around His Holy Name..

So instead of spelling out G-O-D
We acronymize with an OMG
Or other sorts of tricks from our trickster stash
Like replacing the o with a simple dash-

He who is orally inclined we did not forget you
All hope is not lost..deify your lexicon too
My goodness...gracious..Bashefer..yo see
Those are all listen to me..

The most popular G-dly exclamation I find
Is ironic gets.. it boggles the mind
Its proclaimed happily by the unassuming Jew
Have you guessed?..Its My Gosh ..I’m sure you did too

After all its the Jewish way of naming His Name
Without naming or shaming our tradition, How tame
My Gosh like Bashefer that
That’s what you hold on to your hat

Did you know..? Would you suspect?...I suspect not
For how should you know..? Why would you think..crazy thought?
That this Gosh you’ve been saying..and here’s the sum of my post
Really stands for
Holy ghost


Thursday, March 08, 2007


A dot is a perfect thing. It just is

Perfect form.
Perfectly Round.
Round is natures natural form...from atoms to the heavenly spheres.

Think of the dots function. One little dot signals finality..yet add one or two..and it encourages your mind to think further...

Consider this.

The dot is the smallest notation known to man..
It has the power to bring long, awesome, beautiful and complicated words and sentences to a grinding halt.
Case in point.

Gotta love that feisty little dot.



Tuesday, March 06, 2007


Hashem sends us messages through the most unlikely channels. Sometimes in the very place where you turn to run away from him you find him in the most intense form...

I once heard an eye opening thought from my Mashgiach Zt'l that was a little difficult for me to hear and fully comprehend until I chanced upon an old Jewish joke that was just a perfect parable to the above mentioned idea.

I'll start with the joke.

There was once a city bus driver named Herman who was given a route up 2nd Ave to drive every morning. It was a quiet yet integral route in the vast bus route network. At the end of the day Herman would come back to the depot with about $150.

One day at 6:00PM Herman came striding into the bus depot with a huge grin on his face. He made his way to his bosses office and desk and placed $565 down and sat down across from his bosses puzzled expression.
"What's this Herman?"
"Boss I found a route...down 5th ave..I'm telling's a goldmine!"

That's the joke.

Hermans folly is clear. He doesn't see the big picture..and while he certainly meant well..if he were to continue that 5th ave route he would most definitely be matter how much money he brings in. That's because the 5th ave route is not HIS route. He's not doing anyone a favor by going down 5th ave.

The lesson is that every person has one primary goal and assignment to accomplish and deep down everyone knows what that is. It is the one thing that the Yetzer Horah really puts his energy into.
For every person it's different.
But we try to avoid this by focusing on other things..thinking that somehow davening better, or giving alot of tzedakah etc..will help distract us from our true monumental task
We think that somehow we can come into Hashems office at the end of the day and place a wad of cash and he'll forget about our true job.

May Hashem give us strength to face and rise up to our true challenges.



Thursday, March 01, 2007

The Deal

Over the next few months I will slowly move over all my favorite posts from my previous blog..So if you've seen this before just skip..or read it again...

When I was 14 and drastic changes were wreaking havoc to my body.
The child I was...
was afraid to let go,
to disappear along with his peers.

So my... new adolescent evolving self made a deal then with the fading child...
I told him he could come along and join me...
as long as he doesn’t make a total fool of me.

I’m thankful that he stayed.

Now I never get bored
of watching an airplane take off...
of seeing the Empire State Building..
of riding an escalator..of observing fields..beaches...marching bands..
of blowing bubbles...
the thrill of a new friendship...
the comfort of a long hug....
riding trains...
and roughhousing with my own kids....

He’s been a good companion..and he’s loving blogland as well....

and yes..He's psyched for Purim..
He still gets a thrill ripping into a new M'Manos looking for goodies...

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