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Choices and Values

I went to an Orthodox day school. School was closed on Yom Tov as a matter of course.We all brought kosher lunches to school. No parties were held on Shabbat. Keeping mitzvot was just what was done. The halakha was kept through a mixture of school rules and social pressure. My kids attend public school.… Read more »

Of Therapists and Old Ladies

I have a confession to make: I do not believe in therapy. Over the course of my life, I have seen countless therapists, especially during my tumultuous college years – and yet I can’t point to a single successful experience. And so in recent years, I have developed my own “talking cure” — one that… Read more »

Thank You Notes Teaching Middot

We drove our youngest to camp yesterday. The night before he left he finished the last of his thank you notes for his March Bar mitzvah. I was struck, as I have been, as each of my three kids have gone through this Emily Post exercise in American etiquette, just how this formality can deepen… Read more »

A Modest Proposal

Don’t worry. I’m not going to purport that we eat them, nor will I wax poetic on how juicy and delicious those baby pulkes would be with Soy Vay. Though I’ll confess that the idea has occurred to me. And it has been confirmed by other parents who have told me – “when they’re little,… Read more »


It is a well-publicized time for your country to be in the news, if it begins with “i” and is located in the Middle East. (My apologies to India, Indonesia, Iraq, Iceland and Ireland. There is much of note going on in your interesting sovereign states as well, but I’m pressed for time.) I think… Read more »

Second Honeymoon

In my (admittedly somewhat limited) experience, sometimes, once the bloom begins to fade from a new relationship, it can be easy to feel…well, maybe a little disappointed. You and your co-relationship person might disagree on something, or they disappoint you somehow, and you just feel the magic seeping away. When you’re lucky, you and your… Read more »

East Meadow

CalTrain, which runs from San Jose to San Francisco, zooms by the corner of East Meadow and Alma, about five blocks from our house, numerous times a day. It stops about two miles north and three miles south of that corner. When I go to work at my office in San Francisco, I bike the… Read more »

Unsung Newscycles

There were obviously big things afoot this past week, what with President Obama announcing his first Supreme Court nominee. If you are of a slightly wonkish persuasion, then perhaps you meditated on what it might mean for Secretary of State Clinton to have spoken very firmly to the Israeli leadership about curtailing the growth of… Read more »

Peaceful Protest

On Tuesday morning, my small office’s regular staff meeting took place in the plaza in front of the Supreme Court building in San Francisco, under a chuppah, amongst hundreds of waving rainbow “marriage” signs. We were awaiting the news from the court about Prop 8, which, in November of last year, banned same-sex marriage in… Read more »


A close friend of mine has a box in a chest in her house. It is filled with her grandmother’s Christmas Tree ornaments – delicate, hand-picked, beloved pieces. Golden orbs and shining stars, heavy ceramics and light, painted glass. The ornaments have been passed down through her maternal line for generations. She has no idea… Read more »

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