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Last Tuesday, as I flipped between channels, I was endlessly enthused by the number of people over 65 giving live interviews on television, and the number of people of all ages invoking their parents and grandparents. Seeing older people acting as crucial sources of perspective in an election year, not as cute and endearing characters… Read more »

Promoting Promiscuity?

The perils of public transport are too much to bear for some of the delicate flowers of northwest London. Golders Green and Hendon have a seedy side and many anxious parents insist on driving their daughters to and from school to shield them from the sort of people they are likely to meet on the… Read more »

Out with "the Sarah Palin," in with "the Marie Antoinette?"

The new hair of Orthodox married women? The most recent garment-related decree of Rabbi Yosef Sholom Elyashiv, of modesty courts fame, has given us a great new marketing idea for Orthodox women’s fashions. In a recent talk, R. Elyashiv announced that contemporary sheitels, as wigs worn by married Orthodox women are often called, are not… Read more »

Go and Find

Well. I triple-checked the non-profit guidelines section of the IRS website, so it is without fear that I am endangering anyone here that I say: OH MY GOSH, WE WON WE WON WE WON*. That’s a pretty nice feeling. And an unbelievable fit with this week’s parsha of Lech L’cha. Going to a new and… Read more »

Black Dogs

Today I was surrounded by eight ferocious dogs and saved by the power of Torah. I was jogging, as I often do, near Ramat Rachel, a kibbutz hotel near the southern part of Jerusalem that overlooks Bethlehem and the Judeaen hills. Usually when I run that route, I go no further than the giant statue… Read more »

Erev Erev Election Day, or, I Have No Fingernails Left

So, yeah, the fate of our nation will be decided in about 50 hours from now, but let’s not talk about that, okay? Oh, I know there’s plenty of other stuff to talk about—I’ve spent a lot of time in the last week checking and rechecking such inanities as the technical definition of a graduated… Read more »

Autumnal Holidays and Ballot Initiatives

My girlfriend is that rare combination of pessimism with the occasional flash of hardcore optimism, and a dash of superstition thrown in for good measure. (Actually, that’s probably why everyone assumes she’s Jewish when they meet her.) We’re not discussing national election polling data right now, but as a Golden State native, she is still… Read more »

The Gym

If it is desirable to eat and sleep in a sukkah, should one also use the treadmill in a sukkah? It’s chol hamoed, I’m at the gym and judging by the number of men and women sweating off those extra kugel calories, it’s clear that Jews are not obligated to exercise inside a sukkah. The… Read more »

Holiday Season

Last week my father remembered an Orthodox classmate from law school who got an interview at a prestigious Baltimore firm that had no Jewish partners or employees. “How’d it go?,” my father asked. “I had to tell them about September,” he said. This came up in a discussion, provoked by a lecture in my Ethnic… Read more »

The Devil’s in the Details, So We Better Be, Too

Okay, I know it’s probably a bad idea for me to write about the election in the U.S. right now, because I’m still a resident of freak-out-loss-of-perspective-ville, but this is a legitimate feminist comment on political media. Lisa Belkin’s piece in the Times magazine this weekend posited that when we talk about Sarah Palin, we’re… Read more »

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