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Unashamedly Alive

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  Sometimes I end up breaking my 12-minute-rule on reading. Recently I spent a full afternoon reading Péter Gárdos’s Fever at Dawn again. I vaguely remembered purchasing and reading the book when it was first published several years ago, during one of my many hospitalizations, and I remembered how life affirming the novel was. A novel, a true story, of Gárdos’s parents. Gárdos being a filmmaker turned his beautiful story into a movie which premiered this past Friday in Jerusalem.

The story of two young Shoah survivours falling in love is not a Holocaust story. It is a story of love and life. It explores questions of Jewish identity, the price of survival, touches briefly upon the horrors of the war and the Shoah, but still, it is a story of hope-and sometimes even hope lost. 

In 1945 a Gárdos’s father, Miklós, recovering in a Swedish hospital, wrote 117 letters to Hungarian women also treated in Swedish hospitals after the war. Having to face a grim diagnosis, he didn’t give up. He received 18 replies. The story that follows is more romantic than any Jane Austen novel. It is also more interesting than any soap opera. Despite the end of the story is spoiled from the first page–the author, aft all, was born–we get a special privilege of seeing how love happens.

Gárdos writes well, as evidenced by his films as well. It is, however, the most beautifully written parts of the novel are the original correspondence between Gárdos’s parents. I hope that the translations can match the beauty of those letters. In Hebrew it does. 

To celebrate that Judaism and the Jewish people are alive and thriving my shul celebrates life every year in the anniversary if Kristallnacht. This year we selected a read out of Fever at Dawn. It was a most brilliant choice. Listening to one of my boys reading Miklós’s letters, a young woman reading Lili’s, and people, mistly descendants of Holocaust survivours, taking turns for the rest of the story was indeed a celebration of life.

The English translation of Fever at Dawn will be available in April 2016. 

It’s OK Not to be Christian in December

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12 Minutes

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12 minutes on the bus, every morning. That is usually the time I allow for myself to read freely. Anything longer than that and it’s not a language book or something for uni, I feel guilty. It is something I never thought that I’d experience. I remember friends telling me years ago if a book in their hand wasn’t their Anatomy textbook, they’d feel so guilty during their first year of college that it took them years to get back into reading after passing the combined anatomy-pathology exams at the end of their second year. I kinda dismissed it as an overdramatic reaction, but now I know what they meant.

Back in my earlier college experience I read fast and easy. Now? Learning new things from a tect takes alot more effort and time. And time is the one thing I lack. Between work, helping with home school, working on univesity assignments, trying to finally gain a better understanding of written Hebrew, making some crochet pieces for sale, 168 hours in a week are just not enough. To keep my sanity, however, I give myself those 12 minutes on the bus to read. 

Sometimes, though, I just can’t wait for finals. That will give me a month of reading what I want. That will be my greatest present this holiday season. So many new books are waiting to be read!

Shabbat Shalom from Israel – 7 very Quick Takes

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1. I like to listen to music at work. Every once in a while I can find a corner of the office, or one of the training rooms or conference rooms that is empty, and I can play my music without having to plug it into my CI. Like today.

Today this song was on my playlist:

“I know that at the end maybe sorrow will fade away
Maybe tomorrow maybe another year
The wind that pushes away dawn
At the end will change its direction”

2.So was this song:

“Other days will come, with the sun and with G-d, and the morning will be all right.”

3. And this as well:

“Unfortunately I was born a human

I can see, think, feel, smell,

But that’s not enough for me

I want to hover over people

In an incredible silence, in an incredible silence


I want to fly with the power to see everything from above,

To understand what people are, and so on”

4. And of course, this one:

So my CO asked me: “Hevel, are you being political today?”  

While the songs in my playlist followed each other in this order by accident, because it was my YouTube Harel Skaat playlist, in fact today I was political. I am ready for change. I am ready to feel safe. I am ready for peace. I am tired of the anti-Israel bias of the media and the UN and half my FB friends. I am tired of politicians. 

5. The last two weeks my kids learnt to defend themselves against stabbers in their Krav Maga class, and they learnt how to provide first aid to stabbing victims in their community health class. On Sunday two of my teens will travel to Jerusalem for a lecture, and I’ll let them. I’ll be a nervous wreck. Tel Aviv is experiencing a lot less violence than the capital, so it’s scary to send them there. But such is life in Israel. Some of the places they will pass through have experienced attacks. 

To be completely homest I’m glad not to have to carry a weapon. I am a bit nervous each time my combat soldiers come home with a weapon. Don’t take me wrong, I know my way around them, still, I don’t like them in my home.

6. This month Kevin has lived in Israel (and the general TLV area) longer than anywhere else. Israel has really become home.

7. In the midst of the craziness life goes on. Yesterday Kevin and I attended the wedding of one of the soldiers in my team. It was a joyous occasion, and we all had a wonderful time. Mazel tov to Orit and Fedya.

Shana Tova!

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Compulsory Forgiveness

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One of the things that bothers me a lot about the whole Duggar fiasco is people forgiving Josh for the sexual assault and adultery as they were the victims of either. I can understand forgiving him for the lie that his public persona is, as my friend Annie very wisely said: “I think that all of us are damaged by the sins of any of us….which is why I expect that people have a sense that there is something for them to forgive. In this case, looking up to someone as a model, or inspiration, and finding that they were not that can hurt a great deal.”

The problem with that, however, lies with people, who were more than willing to forgive such betrayal when he was involved in incestous molestation of young girls, but are drawing the line at adultery. Because, you know, actual sexual assaults on little girls are not nearly as bad as consensual sex between two adults outside of marriage.

The other problem is when people are willing to specifically state that they are forgiving Josh for what he did to his sisters, the babysitter, and his wife. This is not some random church lady’s job to forgive him for those. That is a choice his sisters, the babysitter and his wife have. And even if they choose to forgive him, it doesn’t mean that those crimes and immoral acts never happened. There are consequences in life for one’s actions. In less cult-like environments, the consequences would have been being charged for the molestation, and likely divorce, or at least a few months in the dog house for the latter. Anna is, however, already reported to have decided to stay with Josh and support him. Because she has forgiven him. Because she is required to forgive. She is given no other choice. I, however, think that when you are not given a chance other than to publicly act as if you have forgiven and forgotten, forgiveness is often not real. Pretending something didn’t happen is not forgiveness. I do have to wonder sometimes if the Duggars are generally capable of true forgiveness, that is not just outward motions.

Laura Turner brilliantly wrote:

“Anna Duggar can forgive Josh without continuing their marriage. She can separate from him, divorce him, remove his kids from him, because he violated the vow he made to her–and she can still forgive him. To forgive does not mean that you return to the same relationship you had with someone before they hurt you. In fact, sometimes wisdom demands that you make changes to a relationship even as you forgive.” – See more at:

http://lauraturner.religionnews.com/2015/08/21/when-forgiveness-isnt-reconciliation-on-josh-duggar/#sthash.jTwXEQg6.dpuf

Forgiveness is a wonderful thing. It is great to be the receiving end as well as being the one who can forgive. It is often not easy, and definitely not instant: if one can instantly forgive something, then that thing wasn’t even an offence. Maybe whoever did it thought they hurt someone. Maybe we didn’t think we were, but saying the words extending grace and forgiveness still might be just the right thing, to help another feel less guilt.

Maybe Anna Duggar sees no problem with her husband cheating on her, and she finds nothing needs to be forgiven. Maybe she has known for some time, as the accounts on Ashley Madison were terminated around the time of the molestation coming to light, and Josh might have actually been a man and tell her about everything. In that case Anna has had over two months to start digesting what happened. We don’t know. I just hope she will eventually find peace and will be treated by someone as an equal and as an adult. I also hope that this will be the last we hear of the Duggars.

Another Two Cents on Josh Duggar

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My sister thinks I’m obsessed with the Duggars. The reason for that is that during the past 5 years I made at least 4 comments about them to her, and posted exactly three times mentioning them on my blog since 2012  Of course she is the one who has watched every rerun of every Duggar show, and she is capable of telling the Duggar kids apart. I was never capable of doing that, not that I really tried, anyway. So because I am obsessed with the Duggars, I woke to my sister’s text at 4:57 a.m.

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I am worried about Anna blaming herself. I am worried about people who defended Joshua Duggar’s sexual abuse of his sisters and another girl, and his parents’ lack of actions to protect those girls, because Mr. Duggar “got saved”, “repented and became a productive member of society”, “grew up into a Christ following husband and father” will continue to defend him, blaming everyone and everything else, including the internet for his unfaithfulness. Because no good Christian man has enough self control to resist the temptation to cheat on his wife.

Of course marriage equality made him do it as it undermined the sanctity of his marriage. Not unless, you know, he was seeking a gay married guy who also wanted to cheat on his husband. Maybe a married lesbian. In which case Josh Duggar was undermining their marriage.

As my sister pointed out, I believe FRC chose perfectly when they hired him as an executive director, and basically the face of the organization. He represents them, and a big segment of the American religious right just perfectly. I am sure that the message of the real values of FRC didn’t get lost on a lot of people.

I’ve already heard that those accounts must have been fake. They were tied to credit cards that had Josh Duggar’s then current addresses attached to them. There are credit card statements. I doubt that he would have missed an opportunity to complain about identity theft, and being set up by his Christ’s enemies. That alone tells me it was real.

There is still the chance to say that he needed to investigate this evil website as part of his job. Yes, it’s completely believable that he needed not one, but two accounts, over a period of two years. There is no chance that sexual predator Gothardite golden boy could be a (would be) serial cheater. No. Impossible.

Except it is all too real.

ETA: Josh has admitted to watching pornography and cheating on Anna.

He is grieved by the hurt he caused being caught again in something immoral. He writes, “I deeply regret all the hurt I have caused so many by being such a bad example.” He also claims he was fighting immorality in the country…. well yeah, once again, it is more than personal failings. Josh Duggar has been villifying 7-10% of the population in a high paid job, without any proof of what his organization was preaching was true, while he himself committing the sins that FRC assigned to the LGBTQ community.

I definitely hope that Anna wasn’t bullied into a covenant marriage like the Jessa and Jill. However, if she wasn’t and she stays with Josh, she loses any sympathy I might have for her.

I also have to wonder since Josh doesn’t believe in birth control, how many little illegitimate Duggars he has produced and what he took home to Anna… or if he, in fact, used protection, betraying the one thing that brought him fame and a livelihood.

May her memory be a blessing

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From the Jerusalem Pride

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This… This happened yesterday in Jerusalem.

An Ultra-Orthodox protester stabbed six people in yesterday’s Jerusalem Pride. The same man attacked participants in 2005.

Some members of our family attended this year, and I am very grateful that I got Kevin’s text that they were okay before I saw the news. I am still very upset about this happening. How can someone claiming to be a man of G-d, and being angry at people breaking of–what he perceives to be–G-d’s commandment that he completely ignores the one about not killing?

Today is Tisha B’Av (postponed), and I’m Fasting

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Jerus-n4iToday is the 10th day of the Hebrew month Av, and it’s, like Yom Kippur, a fast day for Jews. (Tisha B’Av is actually the 9th, but since fasting is prohibited on the Shabbat, with the exception of Yom Kippur, the fast is postponed by a day.) Unlike Yom Kippur, however, Tisha B’Av is rarely observed or recognized by secular Jews. Tisha B’Av marks the destruction of bothe the first and second Temple, and it’s, in a way, a national day of mourning for all of Israel–whether in Eretz Israel or in exile.

Yet some progressive branches of Judaism all together discard this day of mourning as something that has lost its meaning with the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948, and especially since the return of the Old City of Jerusalem to Israel in 1967. Other branches of Judaism continue to observe this day till the Temple is once again rebuilt and the Moshiach comes. They keep fasting every year. Some of my Reform Jewish friends chose to fast this year as conflict regarding the Temple Mount is getting more and more violent. Some Orthodox and Conservative leaders remind us that today’s mourning is just as much for the flaw in today’s Israel that prevents the coming of the messiah and the building of the Third Temple as it is for the loss of the first two.

I chose to fast this year (for the first time on this day) because I have been feeling more disconnected from Judaism these days. I find myself ignoring my usual routine in tradition. I even considered getting a larger, visible tattoo–but I am almost sure I’ll never get one, because it would remove me too far from all that I find valuable in Judaism. So in an attempt to reconnect with my heritage and my long lost faith. Who knows, maybe one day, I’ll succeed. In the mean time, I fast today, I pray today, and hope for a messiah, who will help us to peace–extending that peace to our cousins in the Abrahamic religions as well.

It’s been a while since the last Harel Skaat post

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He has two new songs out! This one was uploaded today:

And then, his most recent music video for a song that’s actually in English:

 

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Oh, by the way Kit Harington (Jon Snow in GoT) looked like RL when he was younger: kit

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Does Courage Have Only One Face?

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My Facebook feed is full of posts depicting an American soldier in one picture saying “This is courage” and then a picture of Caitlyn Jenner, saying “Not this”.

I think the very people posting these and otherwise bashing Ms. Jenner are the very proof that she deserved the Arthur Ashe Courage Award. The amount of hate that is spewed by people when Ms. Jenner is mentioned is mindblowing.

I also, personally find the above mentioned meme offensive.  As a soldier I don’t think I’m very courageous. Courage in my own life looks very different. I know that many soldiers have a lot of courage. However, so do children and adults fighting cancer, people living with disabilities fighting their everyday battles, former cult members, first responders, parents, investigative journalists, gay couples willing to live outside the closet, and yes, Caitlyn Jenner.

While we in the LGBT community experience a lot of hatred, the T of the acronym even experiences lack of support or understanding, and sometimes outright hate from within the community. Transgender women are murdered and are driven to suicide in disproportionate numbers within our community. It takes courage to stand up and face the world. It takes a lot of courage to face closed minded people, who can only hate, because their definition of courage is very limited.

Congratulations to Ms. Jenner and all people displaying courage: the single mom handling a job and raising her kids, the agoraphobic lady in the neighbourhood who walked to the mailbox yesterday, the orphan who leaves everything they know behind to start a new life with a family in a foreign country, the student teacher on her first day in the classroom, the autistic child trying a new food, and countless others. By denying Ms. Jenner’s courage to transition to who she is, and publicly standing up for others, the courage of all these people and their everyday victories over circumstances or themselves is being ridiculed.

Let’s just all accept that courage can manifest in many ways, and that is why our world is full of brave people.

The Problem With Caitlyn Jenner’s Vanity Fair Cover

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The problem with Caitlyn Jenner’s Vanity Fair Cover is the exact same problem as with most other magazine covers: it is photoshopped to the degree that the person on the photo don’t look like real people. Caitlyn Jenner is just like any other rich, aging cover girls: not like the other people. I personally don’t think Bruce Jenner was handsome, and I don’t think Caitlyn Jenner is particularly beautiful. She is 65, and like other 65-year-old celebrities she appears to have had some work done on her face: a nose job and a facelift are my guesses. The real important thing is that Caitlyn Jenner looks comfortable in her skin.

I have to admit I know next to nothing about the Jenner-Kardashian clan, and most of that is meta-knowledge. I didn’t follow their reality show, and I didn’t even kow who he was till about three years ago. Yet I have an opinion of the whole thing. First of all, I do think that Jenner handled the transition very well and in a tasteful manner. As someone who had the kind of publicity surrounding him that the Kardashian clan had, he couldn’t just drop off the face of the earth forever. He could have disappeared for a while, then re-emerge as Caitlyn, but I think the path Jenner chose was the best way to handle it. By being honest and forthcoming, she managed to dispell some myths associated with the transition of transgender adults.

Of course Caitlyn’s transition is not representative of the experience of transgender people of less privileged situations. The struggle for each person is different, and it is often complicated by financial and employment questions. It takes courage to go through with the change from one life to another, from one (public) identity to another. Going from one very public identity as a man, transitioning into a woman, knowing that it will bring on judgement and ridicule, losing friends, supporters and business partners is very brave. Caitlyn Jenner deserves the Arthur Ashe Courage Award. Yes, there are others, who also would deserve it.

When we look at Caitlyn, the wealthy, popular, courageous 65-year-old woman, let us not forget all the other people who have to go through a similar, difficult transition without the outpouring of public support Caitlyn receives. I am wishing all of them, and Caitlyn in particular on the occasion of her public debut, a happy, successful life.

My Two Cents on the Duggar Fiasco

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There is one big difference between Josh Duggar and me: I have never molested anyone. Another big difference is that I didn’t choose to work as an executive director for an organization that spreads unfounded accusations about a certain segment of the population being a danger to children. His choice to spread hateful propoganda for FRC–while knowing all too well that HE, indeed, had been a danger to children–makes what happened inexcusable. Whether he hid this part of his history from his employer or disclosed it is irrelevant. Josh Duggar identified with the message of that organization. Hopefully the FRC’s association with Mr. Duggar discredits them just as much as it should discredit the Duggar parents.

While running for office, Jim Bob Duggar’s website claimed that he considers incest and rape capital offenses. So what does he do when it comes to his knowledge that his son was sexually abusing his sisters? He promptly did nothing. While some people claim it was “only” fondling, and it could have been innocent, mutual exploration, knowing that he did it without consent and knowing the age gap of all parties involved, it was not innocent. Now the Duggar parents apparently don’t consider incestuous abuse a big deal if it happens in their home. I mean Josh “only” molested his younger sisters, no big damage, it wasn’t his brothers… or wasn’t something serious, like stealing a car. Those things might have had consequences in Duggarland. After all, Josh Duggar stopped with this activity because he realized he could ruin his life if he kept abusing girls. His life, not the lives of his victims. But you know, he was blessed with a Y chromosome, so he clearly matters more.

I have been quite surprised by those defenders of the Duggars, who failed to do their basic homework, and are upset about the police records having been released. They claim that releasing juvenile records is illegal. They might be right, though juveniles who become registered sex offenders (as likely Josh would have been seeing he was a repeat offender over an extended time period) usually have some public records. That is besides the point: In December 2006 when the police records were created, Josh Duggar was a legal adult. Shocking, right?

I have to wonder what else is going on in the Duggar household, and if there is anyone who can protect the children? I also have to wonder just how much we can trust certain Christian victim advocates, “coaches”, “counselors”, who go on defending Josh Duggar. Claiming that he repented and went on to live a good, upright life (of spreading hate), that the parents handled it well and we should forgive him because he owned it leaves out two very important details of the equation: What he did was, yes, a sin. But it was also a crime. Churches deal with sin, courts deal with crimes. One of the seven laws, according to the Bible, that god gave to Noah was to establish courts of justice. Those people, who think that it was handled right are willing to ignore their god’s laws (which, actually, do apply to them. The Torah doesn’t, and it never did.) Some of these people,  claim they forgave their own abusers, because “they owned it”, while also saying that they didn’t own other acts. Women say they didn’t report their abusers, because they repented, and they no longer commit the particular sin they did as teenagers.

Let me tell you something from experience: unreported teenage offenders can grow into adult offenders, who are much, much, much better at hiding the abuse they inflict on others. A friend said that she closely watches her abuser, and she sees no sign of him offending again. It makes me literally sick to my stomach. Forgiveness has its place, but not reporting the crimes, especially when one claims they are no longer victims, is enabling the abuser. Knowing from a personal experience, being the victim of someone who started molesting younger cousins at the age of 13, but then repented and was forgiven, the elimination of the law from the dealing with the young sexual predators creates more victims.

Do I think Josh Duggar is a danger to children? Yes, like the whole lifestyle he and his family are trying to sell. Whether he would be a sexual danger to children, I don’t know.  [ETA: In light of this newly released police report where it’s revealed that Josh Duggar molested his 5-year-old sister when he was 15 and that he committed at least 7 acts of abuse, and confessed three different times to his father, I think he is a continued dager.] He definitely is an opportunistic, hateful guy.

 

OneRepublic, RL and The Republic of Ireland

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I haven’t blogged for over two months, and really, I was contemplating letting the blog quietly go. It would have been okay. I have been blogging at various places since 2002. 12 years have passed and I sometimes wonder how much longer this blog will last.

Now, there are fun times I like to share with my friends, and that was boyband week in Israel. Backstreet Boys performed here the week before Shavuot (Pentecost, Whit Sunday/Monday). Unfortunately I could not go with Kevin, as the same day we had tickets I had a small surgery. He went with his brother and one of our older girls, and they had a blast. Then on the 28th OneRepublic performed in Tel Aviv. Their opening act was the fabulous Harel Skaat, so of course I had to go! The fan base of Mr. Skaat and OneRepublic seems to overlap quite a bit. We saw one of my other favourite Israeli singers in the crowd. It was fun. Here is OneRepublic performing “Budapest” in TA. (Yeah, what other song would I have chosen, really???)

Now I really like OneRepublic, and I am building up quite an immunity to One Direction, so I was willing to accompany my girls to Vienna to see them, but alas, the other health issues attached to the previously mentioned small surgery I won’t be able to do it. :( It would have been a very rushed trip anyway, as the concert is on the 10th, and on the 12th it’s Tel Aviv Pride! Fortunately We found a way for the girls to go. They have been told that they are strictly forbidden to get gifts for the family, they can blow all their savings on One Direction merch.

Now mentioning Pride, I am very proud of my homeland, the Republic of Ireland. Ireland is the first country in the world to grant equal (civil) marriage rights to same sex couples. I know the Pope is pissed off that such a Catholic country would actually be able to recognize the difference between civil rights and church business, but all I can say is, thank you for being a great country! Sometime in the future, this Irishman will travel back home and have the wedding he always wanted. :) Congratulations to all those couples who will shortly be able to get married in Ireland. I know a great, gay-friendly baker in Cork. 😀

Here is some more OneRepublic:

On Friday, Vote Yes

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Missing in Action

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So, as a brand new iPhone owner I really should blog more. The last few weeks have been crazy busy! Let me try to remember when I last blogged… Oh yeah, the elections that didn’t end with the results I had hoped for. Let me just stop there. Even though Bibi is, in my opinion, far from the besz thing for this country, he was elected by the people. And that itself is something that needs to be respected.

 

 The week before the elections my oldest daughter got married in Prague,  Czech Republic. It was a sweet and short wedding, with kids taking their job seriously. It was a great trip. We even joined a free walkong tour and the kids did wonderfully on the nearly three hour activity. Judy was carried on Kevin’s shoulders for part of it and walked part of it. The other kids walked the whole time! We stopped at the Bake Shop about halfway through, and I offered the kids some super expensive treats… And they turned me down. That was a first.

Judy turned two, and in the almost two weeks her vocabulary has grown like crazy. So has her curiosity and her independence. The great thing is that there is always someone around to keep an eye on her and only intervene if absolutely necessary. She is starting to play with other kids, and entertains herself surprisingly well for chunks of time. 

Getting back, it has been super busy. Between work, medical appointments, and homeschool I have very little free time. In fact most of our homeschool teaching is done by Kevin’s mom and the Open University. We decided to keep the littles in school for next year, too. They thrive there and are in a mostly Hebrew environment, so there is no reason to change that. 

In my limited free time we caught up on American Idol. I actually enjoy this season, though I wasn’t exactly impressed with most of the 80s week performances. I especially disliked Joey’s awful rendition of Girls Just Wanna Have Fun, and Jax’s Bon Jovi attempt. Clarke, on the other hand, was great. Nick was the best! I generally thought that the soundtrack of my childhood was trampled on. I know Boy George’s voice is not what it used to be, but he was still the best in the group performance of Karma Chameleon. Which, by the way, is one of my favourite songs from that decade. 

http://youtu.be/xvqlA41mxzY

Another thing I realized is that I must have a Jewdar. I’m not even kidding. We have been binge watching Salem. There are two characters I especially love: Cotton and Isaac. Part of the reason for that is that I find the two actors, Seth Gabel and Iddo Goldberg incredibly hot. After googling them it turns out that the former is a Jew from Florida and the latter is Israeli-British. 

Mentioning Salem, we need to do some Salem Witch Trial and English phonology and phonetics projects with the kids, lest they believe that Cotton Mather was against witch trials snd Increase Mather was sctive in them. Plus back then Brits spoke like Americans. So yes. I have a week of furlough, we can work on those.

Passover is fast approaching. We are mostly done with cleanong and preparing for eight days of unleavened bread. This is usually. Challenging week for me, because I don’t like matzah, but this year Kevin found some great recipes with it.

While cleaning is mostly done I was dreading all the cookibg for the Seder. Some of my friends suggested to just take it easy and serve a simple salad or sandwiches or something equally simple, but that is the equivalent of a simple salad and sandwiches for Christmas dinner. Luckily my awesome stepmom invited us to Seder! It is partly catered, so everyone wins.

We as a family also decided to spend the days of the counting of the Omer–the seven weeks between the Seder and Shavuot–eating vegetarian, at least till Lag B’Omer. No, not eating vegetarians, just following a meatless diet. We are drawing inspiration from Indian cuisine as well as Yotam Ottolenghi’s Plenty.

I have finally decided to try filet crochet. 

 

The Day After The Elections

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Americans seem to be excited that Bibi, once again, won the Israeli elections. I am way less excited about that. You see, like other Tel Avivians I didn’t vote for him. Tel Aviv voted Zionist Camp. Of course, once again, it shows how Tel Aviv is its own little bubble. As Ynet columnists wrote, we are kinda disconnected from the rest of the country. Apparently the other areas that voted for the left are Gaza brodering communities, who have lost trust in Bibi and his potential coalition partners.

Now not all hope is lost for us, secular, two-state solution supporting, civil marriage wanting Israelis. My vote is one of the more than 200 thousand votes that haven’t been counted.

The Encounter

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There is this man I work with. He is beautiful. He looks awesome in uniform, and he has the most handsome face. His huge brown eyes and long black eyelashes are beautiful. His hair is cut perfectly, and he somehow manages to keep just enough facial hair that our supervisors believe it is a 5 o’clock shadow… at 7 a.m. He has sparkles in his eyes and the cutest dimples. He has a distance runner’s physique. He is absolutely “my type”.

To make things even better, he is gay. He is just as attracted to me as I am to him.

The other day I was restocking paper towels in the shower, and we ran into each other. He was wearing only a towel, and he walked up to me to grab a few paper towels. His skin smelled like spring. I could feel his breath on my neck as he reached over to the supply cart.

What happened next?

Nothing. He grabbed the box of paper towels, put them in their place, and went on to dress up. I finished stocking the bathroom and went back to work.

Contrary to popular belief, gay men don’t engage in sexual acts with every other gay person they find attractive. He and I are both living in committed relationships, and just like most heterosexual couples, we don’t cheat on our partners.

Also contrary to popular belief, men have self control regardless of what someone else wears or doesn’t wear. Because, you know, humans, not animals.

…Because My Kid

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Overheard at my house:

Kevin: What should we make Dad for his birthday dinner?
Ezra: Rainbow trout! Rainbow is dad’s favourite colour! 2014-02-14 16.34.21

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