Monday, June 25, 2007

Am I a kvetch?

I get easily annoyed in elevators.

The topic for today is something that I probably have no right to get upset about, but it annoys me nonetheless, and I want to get some feedback about it.

I get ticked off when I am on an elevator and I have pushed a high floor, say number 10. Another person gets on and pushes 6. A third person joins us, he is young and able bodied. He sees that floor six is lit up, and then pushes 5 or 7.

This annoys me, because he is wasting my time. Whenever I see that someone has pushed the floor directly above or below my floor I just get off with that person and either go up or descend a flight.

Am I just being a kvetch?

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Something about this...

...doesn't make sense

Does anybody remember the uproar last year? I don't think the eida hacheredis has suddenly become multicultural.

What is really going on behind the scenes here?

Can anyone make sense of this?

Help me out here.

Home? Or just back?

The outbreak of Oleh Self Righteousness Syndrome has some interesting ramifications, particularly in the way Americans perceive olim. The guilt that I have spoken about is evident in the way I am spoken to now that I am back in the States.

Usually what happens is this. I see Old Friend Or Acquaintance, and go over to say hello. With a big smile they say, "Hey OOS great to see you. Welcome home."

Then suddenly a look of the deepest fear/worry/shame/guilt (and perhaps just a touch off annoyance) overtakes their faces, and they quickly exclaim, "I mean welcome back. Of course, welcome back. Not home."

To anyone who thinks that OSRS is harmless these exchanges are exhibit A. Why have we undergone this uncomfortable way of greeting? Why the quick and nervous clarification of their salutation? Is it because they truly believe that America is not home?

Of course not. The awkwardness is a direct result of having been corrected countless times by smug olim who either say, "Back, not home" or portray an expression of the deepest loathing at the nerve of these Americans to equate the U.S. with home.

In fact, for numerous reasons I make an effort to repress my instinct to call America "home." But please, if you OFOA see me in the street don't be scared to call this country what it really is.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

People I admire

I can't help but be awed by the numerous Israelis in my graduate program, or for that matter, American students in Israeli schools, and marvel at the work they put into studying in a foreign language. I was recently speaking to an Israeli classmate and we were lamenting the fact that we were required to read what amounted to over 90 pages for just one of our six classes. However, what emerged were two very different stories. What had taken me an hour and a half to read had taken her 4 HOURS!!! I can't even imagine what it must be like.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Everything in moderation

Going to the "matzah minyan" in the Young Israel of Kew Garden Hills is sort of like getting drunk: Fun and interesting once a year, but debilitating on a regular basis. If you have never experienced this phenomenon I strongly recommend doing so. It is marvelous.

What I like best about that minyan is the guys who leave early. I'm not talking taking your tefillin off during alienu early. These guys are out by the beginning of tachanun.

I know that most of them run supermarkets or other shops that need to be opened very early, but still, it requires a certain type of azus only frum Jews can muster in order to leave halfway through an eighteen minute minyan.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Kinda Creepy

What kind of individual would perform this google search?

And what does it say about my blog that I am the first result?

Friday, June 01, 2007

Joys revisited

One of my favorite pastimes pre- aliya was tuning in to the sports radio stations after a local team had lost, and listening to the callers lament their teams, their lives, and the tragedy in Darfur. Woops, nope, they don't really care about trivial matters like that.

A general example:

Radio jockey: Looks like our next caller is Jim from Kanarsi. Jim, what's up.

Jim: Mike, I have had it. I have had it with this team, with this quarterback. I, I, I just don't know what to say.

RJ: Yeah, I feel you Jim, that was a pretty dismal performance.

J: Someone's gotta go Mike, I mean this is crazy already.

RJ: Yeah, I feel you Jim. That was a pretty dismal performance.

J: I mean, the pass rush wasn't there, that freakin quarterback kept throwin interceptions. Someone's gotta go Mike.

RJ: Yeah, I feel you Jim. That was a pretty dismal performance. Okay, who do we got next? Jonny in Queens your up...

Actually, reading this over I think Carl Rogers may have come up with the formula for client centered therapy from WFAN. This ranting does seem therapeutic.

In any event I am busy making up for lost time.

Oops, gotta go. Yanks just lost another one.

I hate Israeli banks

Enough said