Shalom, shalom, shalom!
What a week! While snow in Israel may seem like a fun anomaly, the snow and cold in the once great state of Texas was rather deadly and no fun at all. A quick shout out to our friends in the Houston area who may still be struggling with recovery. Meanwhile, here on the Sharon home front, the latest 5 inches of fluff has left a picturesque, snow globe-like vista all around us, but once I start shoveling, that charming feeling will quickly fade and be replaced by the harsh reality of sore muscles and an aching back. And speaking of harsh realities, it is never a good idea to speak ill of the dead. But I make an exception for myself in the case of the recently departed and big fat liar, Rush Limbaugh. Most of the mainstream media were rather polite in their obits to this monster of a human, as is expected in the world of professional journalism. But, hey, I’m no pro, so here it is in black and white: Rush Limbaugh was the country’s biggest a-hole and did more harm to the country than any other human since, well, you know who. And what does it say about our country that such an evil, stupid, racist, sexist, dishonest, evil man can be so influential for so damn long? Don’t answer that. But if you believe in a hell, there must be a specially reserved spot for Rush, and it probably has a very large “Douche Bag” sign above it. Nuf said.
This is a really fun week for Jew News in the weekly Forward review. Runs the gamut from Everything Bagel cream cheese ice cream, to the Israeli bobsled team, to reading Thucydides. So, let’s get on with the show:
- Is bagel ice cream good for the Jews? I shit you not, there is actually an ice cream shop in New York, famous for it’s fantastic flavors, that came out recently with the Everything Bagel offering. Despite the choppy editing, this is a really fun read! And it really makes you wonder how the “Everything” version of the great Jewish english muffin has tapped so deeply into our secular culture. Makes me want to run out to Life’s a Bagel, our Cobb’s Corner bagel shop!
- Will Jewish Camps open this summer? Well, I am past the point of caring a hoot about this issue, but I know that these camps provided an awesome experience for my nieces and nephews, so let’s hope they do.
- Cool Runnings: The great hope for the Israeli olympic bobsled team is from Florida! I can’t help but reflect upon our dear reader Beth’s husband Michael who once tried to recruit me to try out for the Israeli olympic ski team. Well, that was one of my life’s great regrets that I never did so, but I do not regret reading this great story about Jared Firestone who has overcome personal hardships and became an Israeli citizen who is now on the Israeli skeleton team.
- Vaccine mitzvahs – Students in GWU Hillel help to get seniors that vital shot in the arm. Nicely done kids! There is hope for the millennials yet!
- The secret Jewish history of Rock and Roll hall of famers – Yes, once again, The Forward has found a Jewish angle on a slew of Rock and Roll artists being inducted into the Hall. There are a few gems in here, (Jay-Z, Chaka Khan, to name a few), but as usual, their Jewish connections are, let’s say, rather flimsy.
- Novelist, essayist, Andre Aciman revealed: This Egyptian sephardic Jew started reading Proust when he was 14. I think i was just reading the sports pages at that age! I never heard of Aciman before this article, so I did learn something new. I probably wouldn’t invite him to a party.
- Biden does Yiddish! Last but not least, Auntie Millie will love this one. Apparently Biden was introduced by a Yiddish scholar at a recent appearance in Milwaukee, and Biden told him he knew some Yiddish! At which point Andersen Cooper chimed in with, “It would be a shanda if you didn’t”. Nicely done Andersen!
Finally, a culture tip for the week. Sunday morning at 4:00AM, TMC will be airing the Barry Levinson (Diner, The Natural, etc) film, Avalon, about Jewish assimilation in America. I suggest you record it on the DVR. Also, I am now subscribing to another popular journal called, Israel 21c, “an English-language online news magazine recognized as the single most diverse and reliable source of news and information about 21st century Israel.” So, future JNR’s may be peppered with additional content from another source as I endeavor to broaden our sources of Jewish news.
So, let’s all be careful out there!