Thursday, August 27, 2009

Ted Kennedy

H was a steadfast friend of Israel, and champion for Soviet Jewry. I hope that the more conservative domestic politics of much of the American Orthodox Jewish community won't get in the way of remembering that.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The great bee massacre of August 2009


I just mowed the lawn. And probably massacred a whole bunch of bees.

There were little yellow weed flowers all over the grass. And the bees were happily doing their pollen thing on quite a few of them. But I had to mow the lawn. You'd think that the bees would fly away when a loud lawn mower engine is less than a foot from them, but no. I hope I scared away as many as possible. I don't think bees have ears, but you'd think they could feel the vibrations! I hate to kill bees, especially after the bee die off of the last few years.

My wife & have talked about how we'd love to plant native flora instead of a lawn. Or perhaps use moss instead of grass. Unfortunately, we're renters, and our lease requires us to maintain the grass lawn and mow it. But maybe in the future. Maybe I'll become a beekeeper as well.

And then maybe bee society won't remember me as the perpetrator of the great bee massacre of August 2009.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Glad to be on the bride's side

Ok, this is going to sound shallow, but I'm writing this with tongue slightly in cheek.

Whenever I go to frum weddings, I like to spend as much time at the smogasboard as possible. But at weddings when I'm good friends with the groom, I feel like I have to hang out at the chatan's tish. With the food that's been transported from a 1970's kiddush. Stale sponge cake and shnapps.

So I don't have food before the chuppah. And at the meal, I, a strict vegetarian, watch unhappily as my wife and friends chow down on dead animals. Even when there's a veggie option, it's a pretty bad imitation of meat instead of good vegetarian food.

Which is why, for the wedding I'm going to tomorrow, I'm happy to be an old friend of the bride. I only met the groom once, at the engagement party. Seems like a great guy and they seem like a great couple. Still, since I don't know him very well, I only have to make a short appearance at the tish. The rest of the hour before the chuppah I can hang out at the smorg. Which, judging by the food at the engagement party, should be pretty good and have some decent vegetarian options...

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Papers from the sky on 9/11

I don't know why, but I was thinking about this today:

On the afternoon of 9/11/2001, I remember walking in Brooklyn on the way to a cafe with a few friends. We were getting together to try to make sense of what happened, and keep each other company in our shock. While we were walking, a great cloud of paper came over the neighborhood, fluttering down to the street. I think it was from 7 WTC, which collapsed in the afternoon. I picked up a few pages and saw that it was financial balance sheets from some company. Some of the pages were slightly singed. I kept them, and thought that I would return them to the company whose name was printed on the bottom. In the end I never got around to it and I'm not sure where they went - probably in the garbage. I'm sure that it wouldn't have made a big difference to the company after losing their entire office, but I've always regretted it nontheless. It would have been symbolic, perhaps, but symbolism counts.