Friday, December 30, 2005

Nasa bishalom(Travel in peace) or Why winter sucks.

So, winter break is here and a bunch of Punks have escaped…to the land of milk and honey where winter is less harsh. It seems though that something strange has happened…
…Winter hasn’t come yet.

It’s so weird. Ever since The Nucular Jew left it seems that winter left with him. As anyone in New York knows, it was a rough last half of autumn. It was cold, windy, brutal, and oh yeah there was snow; THERE WAS SNOW!!! It wasn’t fall; it was a “winter preview.” WTF!! The worst was during the strike (go figure) when it was cold windy and dry; as if the hand of G-d came down to remind New Yorkers how much it rules to have and underground transportation system.

Taking a cue from the last week of fall many of us were bracing for a winter to remember; but then it didn’t come. Except for a couple rainy days (which were wet but not freezing) I have been greeted by blue skies and sun. What the hell is going on?! Can anybody explain this? Can you? Has my desire to escape to Israel this month festered in my head so strongly that it manifested itself in a climate change?

It think I know what the solution is. This strange weather seemed to start when Nukes left the country. Nukes is of British descent. As we all know Britain is cold and dreary. So wherever he goes he takes cold gray weather with him (its probably over cast in Jerusalem as I type). So the mission is clear...We need to keep Nukes out of the country. Sorry Nukes its for the good of the country; but then again...

...Winter might just be waiting. A late start to winter will mean a late start to spring and a late start to summer; so he needs to come back, like Akshav. So, come back Nukes come back.


Those Dumb Blondes

No one's posted since like Tuesday night. So I figured why not post a joke. But not just any joke, a really good dumb blonde joke. Here goes:
This blonde gets on a flight to Miami, and during the flight she decides she doesn’t want to sit in coach. So she gets up and she walks past the first class curtain and sits in one of the seats. Now the flight attendant sees this and walks over to the blonde and says, "Excuse me, Miss, but you can't sit here. Please get up and take your seat back in coach." The blonde says, "I'm blonde, I'm beautiful, and I'm flying to Miami in first class."
So the flight attendant, not knowing what to do, goes to get another flight attendant. The second flight attendant says "Excuse me, Miss, but you can't sit here. This is first class, please go back to your seat in coach." The blonde replies, "I'm blonde, I'm beautiful, and I'm flying to Miami in first class."
These flight attendants have no idea what to do. So one goes to know on the cockpit door and they tell the pilot and co-pilot the problem. The co-pilot says "It's ok. I'll take care of it." He walks over to the blonde, who's still sitting in first class, and says "Excuse me, Miss, this isn't right. You can't sit here. You need to go back to your seat in coach." She says "I'm blonde, I'm beautiful, and I'm flying to Miami in first class."
The co-pilot goes back to the cockpit and tells the pilot what happened. The pilot gets up and says "I'll do it. I know how to speak to them. My wife's blonde." He walks over to the blonde and whispers something in her ear. Quietly the blonde gets up and walks back to her seat in coach. So they all turn to the pilot and ask him, "What did you tell her that made her get up?"
"First class doesn't fly to Miami."

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Mazel Tov Doni

Actually all I wanted to say was,

MAZAL TOV TO DONI AND MIRYAM!! In short I just wanted to wish you two many happy and fruitful years to come with hatzlacha and success in your future endevours. I hope you have an amazing and marvelous wedding full of flowers and beauty. May hashem be there watching over both of you in the chupah and bless you with tons success. Congratulations! :)

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Lessons Learned from Coloring Books

Maxwell (the eight year old boy I baby-sit) and I were coloring a Chanukah-themed coloring book filled with pictures of war scenes from the battles against Antiochus. We were working on one page that had spears, bow-and-arrows, shields, and other types of weaponry, all in front of a large wall and mountains in the background. In the sky there were rocks in motion, flying towards the side of the weapons. So Maxwell asks me why the other side was throwing rocks when they could be using real weapons. So I was trying to explain to him that some times people don’t fight a war they way it should be fought—using real weapons and against real soldiers. So soon enough I got a little, how should I say…opinionated, and I said “ they begin throw rocks and like clockwork the bleeding heart liberals yell, ‘more minorities being oppressed by the white man’, and a few weeks later Mohammad is sitting next to you in a pizzeria in Tel-Aviv only this time, with a different type of weapon”. And Maxwell looks at me confused and says, “Oh”.

Channuka Sameach

Yeah so uh its been channuka here for a few hours already. I listened to the Hannuka song, ate my donuts, lit my menorah (well supposedly i did tht first), bashed hellenism, and watched ushpizin.

Anyone wanna send me some presents??

Its been raining like heaven for the past few days, I wonder how that drought is doing? If it were like 2 degrees colder we wouldve had a white channuka. I may actually be going skiing one of these days in the Hermon. A word to those coming over here, bring an umbrella and a winter coat.

Channuka Sameach, and to hotpinkhunny and friends also a Merry Christmas (i think i got that in with a few hours to go)

The Odd Things You Find

If any Jew's feeling like there are no other Jews in the world today...well, wherever you go, there's always someone Jewish!

Why I was upset.

As it pertains to the previous post Qotd: Transit Strike Edition and comments posted on it.
First of all. No, Helen. You shouldn’t be ashamed of yourself…
…That was totally baseless, inappropriate and I apologize…
…However, I was surprised by your rhetoric. The reason I was so upset by the words you used was because, of course my father has worked for the MTA for about thirty years, and I have often heard firsthand some of the B.S. that they are capable of. For example:

A couple years ago my father broke his hand in an accident in one of the train yards. For hours he and my house were bombarded by phone calls from supervisors. Why? …because they were concerned for his well being? …because they wanted to know what happened? NO! They wanted to make sure that he was in work the next day. THE NEXT DAY! Because, if he was, then the accident would be recorded as a “no loss time accident.” So my tolerance for MTA crap is minimal.

Second, I was surprised by the fact that you like many others seem so eager to blame Toussaint. I have heard a lot of people say. “OHHH, but Ben the strike was illegal.”
Here is what I have to say about that:
The section of the “Taylor Law” that bans public employees from striking is immoral. If you are going to make it illegal for someone to strike you are going to have to pay through the nose to justify such a law. Not just a satisfactory salary, but through the nose. Also, it is understandable that there would be such a law for police officers or firefighters. Without them on duty lives are put at risk. It is just plain wrong to have a law that sacrifices the rights of any individual in effort to maintain the status quo. I know that the economic impact of the strike was significant, but it didn’t put lives in danger. Any striking worker was specifically instructed by the Union to finish their routes. So it wasn’t as if people were left in trains abandoned between stops.
Finally, the right to strike is an imperative for unions. It is necessary to have a strike as a bargaining chip when dealing with employers. Otherwise unions are weak and toothless. When that happens workers are taken advantage of; and that I think we could all agree must not be allowed to pass.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Did this really happen?

US students spark Lebanon bird scare

Why did the carrier pigeon cross the border? It depends on who you ask.

According to the Lebanese Ya Libnan News Web site, the bird was carrying a love letter from an Israeli Arab girl intended for her Lebanese lover.

But if you ask Detroit teen Rachel Greenbaum, you'll get a completely different answer: The Israeli Arab girl is really an American seminary girl, and her Lebanese lover is, in fact, the pigeon....

I really dont wanna post the whole story here, but this really happened and its absurdly funny. So yeah, it u want a laugh read the rest.

Happy Holidays Punks!

As I was shopping for the holidays at Hallmark, I was surrounded by Chirstmas items. Everywhere they were trees and all the other trimmings that come with the 25th of December.
This reminded me of Moshe posting the other day when he made a comment on how Christmas is the predominate holiday in this country.

Christmas is great but as Adam Sandler said in his Hanukkah song, "Instead of one day of presents, we get eight crazy nights" Isn't that great? But in all seriousness, Hanukkah is supposed to celebrate the miracle of lights, where the oil miraculously lasted for eight days in the temple after the Maccbees defeated the Syrians.

So in honor of this great victory and miracle, I plan on eating as many latkes and doughnuts as I can. Whose with me?

Happy Hanukkah Punks! Have a great holiday.

"Put on your yalmulka, here comes Hanukkah
Its so much fun-akkah to celebrate Hanukkah, "
Adam Sandler, The Hanukkah Song

(Here's a list of all the Hanukkah recipies that I found on )

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Channuka Countdown

Channuka in the country is gonna be great. I mean heck this is gonna be like Christmas in Bethlehem or Ramadan in wherever Ramadan is supposed to be celebrated, only much better. Why? Well because I kinda happened to have skipped morning classes...again (I actually had to go to the doctor), and well on the way back I walked through Ben-Yehuda market and came across the most awesome-est donuts ever. Yeah Imagine that 5-10 bakeries within a 2 or so block radius all selling Saf'ganiot (donuts). What could be better? Thats what Channukas all about right? It kinda like seriously puts you in the holyday spirit (ever wonder what the point of spelling it holiday was?). And this isnt like in the US where everything is Christmas-dik, and oriented towards the commericalisation Jesus's birthday. (I find nothing wrong with a 2006th or is it 2005th? birthday celebration just it seems a little over-commericalized) Speaking of which the other day when I was walking back from that old city fabrengen, I saw about the most anti-climatic call-it-whatever-you-like scene of my life; a christmas tree in someones window in the old city of Jerusalem. Well it was in the Armenian quarter so of course it made plenty of sense and all with many of the inhabitants being christian, I was just a little surprised. Now if I found one of those in Mea Shearim on the other hand...

Well getting back to the Jewish aspect of my story so yeah donuts rule? If its a consolation prize to any of you stuck in the striking traffic of Galus, I spilled all the caramel from my donut on my pants during the bus ride.

3 days to go

Seasons Greetings Punks

QOTD: Transit Strike Edition

As I was talking to Randy, Dina, and Tova last night:

"I'm thinking about getting the pink bowling ball from Hello Kitty. I can pretend that Roger Toussaint and the executive board of the TWU are bowling pins. That'll give them a new defintion of the word STRIKE!"

Alternate Transit Options

...from the NYTimes.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Fabrengen (sorry cant spell in yiddish)

Yeah so last night I went to this Chabad fabrengen in the old city. I think a fabrengen is like when a bunch of people get together to celebrate something and drink lots of vodka. Well apparently monday or tuesday this week was like the anniversary of the Alter Rebbes (i think hes also the baal ha-tanya but I have no clue what that is either)release from a russian jail 200 something years ago. So its like this chabadnik holiday, or just another excuse to sing a niggun.

Anyways my friends and I packed into this little shitble with a million other Chabadniks, Snags (as randy says) and other chassidim of shapes and colors. Personally being a 3/4 misnagdish im not into this whole sort of thing, but heck the place was rocking. My friends loved it, although I think the vodka had something to do with that as well. For my part I nearly got trampled a few times while standing on this shaky bench full of the Alter Rebbes supporters (well they wouldve been anyways).

We stayed a little while, pretended to understand whatever language the shmooze was in (yidbrew?), and then sorta disappeared into the dark night of J-Town and off to Ben-Yehuda street. Well, in the end we made it back by 2:30 am, and I slept through all of morning seder while dreaming about Hillelian Commandoes.

Road Trip to "Canada"

I'm not sure if anyone has ever been in a car for as long as I have today. I don't believe I moved from that driver's seat from 2:30 till maybe 6:00. If you have then you know what I went through, but picture it with like about a zillion cars because of a NYC metro strike. (Bottom line, those who take the train should stick to it because there are some out there who just simple cannot maneuver a vehicle whatsoever) It was longer than a plane ride to Puerto Rico or Aruba (which if I'm not mistaken is somewhere around three hours?)

Where you may ask was I going? Canada.

Just kidding, it was really "Canada". Well here's what happened...

Jenny and I decided we were going to do our stats project today, which is due on Thursday. Of course we thought maybe, just maybe, we'd get something done early instead of waiting for last minute like we do with everything else in the world.
Unfortunately, I lost my ActivStats CD and Jenny's practically broke in half. (which is so weird, cuz I am really organized and very rarely lose anything - well except for the game, I lost hah!)

So, we called our trusty friend Rose from class. Rose is a really nice person and when we asked her if we can come pick up the CD from her house (that she was willing to let us borrow) we didn't think to ask where she lived first. When finally asked, the reply was "Canarsie. East 103rd Street."


Anyway, Jenny told her ok we'll be there soon, of course totally thinking that I was up for this. Was I up for this? umm, NO. Mapquest it was...

East 103rd street.... G-d... Just seeing the East 77th was ridiculous enough.

Jenny and I call this our road trip to "Canada."

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Holiday Cheers!

You know the holiday spirit is getting to you when you find relief in having Maroon 5's "She Will Be Loved" stuck in your head because it's better than what you were singing in the shower hours earlier which was "Santa Clause Is Coming to Town."

Monday, December 19, 2005

QOTD: The Care Bear Edition

(this was said a while back but its quote of the day worthy. don't want it go to waste!)

Ben after hearing me use the f word:

"OH MY GOD! I can't believe that Helen just used a bad word! Listening to her curse is like listening to a Care Bear use profanity."-Ben

Sunday, December 18, 2005

(In)Sanity Excercise-or- Mixing Mass Media with Mishnah Makes a Mess.

I was hanging out at a friends house for Shabbat when I got bored. So, I started reading everything in sight. First I picked up The Chumash and read out of Bereshis/Genesis (man...that Joseph and his wacky wardobe...) Then I picked up a magazine. Since I was in a house full of women the only available magazine at the Time was 'Cosmopolitan.' The biggest feature was an article on, what else? sex positions. After reading an article on "What he's really saying" I felt a small pop in my head and figured "Cosmo" had caused enough brain damage and I put it down. I then picked up the Talmud Bavli and started reading I read quite a bit and I discovered something interesting and you can try this in your house.....A little experiment

Perform the following tasks in order:

  1. Read Chumash. At least one parsha, the parsha of the week would be good(Preferably the Hebrew if you can, if not the English, but try to at least read the Hebrew text and sound out the words. Also read the commentary, as much as you can)
  2. Next. Read the most recent issue of Cosmopolitan. US Weekly, or Elle will work as substitutes.
  3. Next. Read out of the Gemara. English translation will be fine. Most people don't know Aramaic.
  4. Then sit down. and think about all that you have read that day.

...If performed correctly, blood will spurt out of your ears.

Don't believe me...?

...Try it.

    Hillelian Commandos

    I was sitting in Hillel this past Thursday while Rabbi Jacobson and his group of men were praying (davening for the ashkis) Mincha. Really quietly and patiently I am waiting for them to finish. All of a sudden, Tova leans over the couch, taps me on the shoulder, and asks "Alison, do you happen to have a tampon in your bag? I just got my period."
    "Sorry, Tova, but I think I might have a pad for you..."
    "uh see I cant do that." slowly the "Tova face" begins to emerge, y'know with the eyes and the sly smile...
    totally puzzled I asked "why not?"
    the "Tova face" is now fully developed as she answers "um cuz im not wearing any underwear"
    out of pure, well I wouldnt exactly call it shock, but I will in this case, shock I just started laughing so hard - not loudly though I tried to control myself. Reminder they are still praying.
    Tova's looking at me totally confused but ok we decided if I find one then I'll let her know.

    Mincha is over and Newcombe comes to me and asks "what the heck happened that made you giggle during Mincha?"
    "sorry, Nukes, can't tell you."
    Needless to say, Newcombe is a very curious guy.

    I called Tova to see if she was "ok" and she informed me that her search returned no results and she was tamponless. Luckily enough later on Dina redeemed her of her misery.

    Later than evening while talking to Dina online, this following conversation took place:
    Me: So I heard you saved Tova today
    Dina: haha yeah. She told me that apparently you dont know that most of hillel dont wear underwear.
    Me: uh no. I thought it was standard...
    and we continued talking but about other things...

    The conversation happened to come up again tonight with Tova as she was telling me "you know, Alison, you should really try it... " and yada yada
    Anyway we were going through hillelians and deciding if they wear underwear or not. Apparently Tova knows a lot who do not. Ben does however and she told me how she knew. In the class that they have together, Tova sits in back of Ben and always sees his boxers protruding out of his pants. (Dont worry Ben I like boxers. In fact, Tova said she was going to get me some for Channukah this way I can wear them in Israel - yay. Wonder what the rabbis will say when they see my boxers coming out of my skirt!)
    Anyway, Tova and I are now taking surveys and asking poeple in Hillel whether or not they wear underwear. We are well on our way to victory to knowing everyones status.

    Anyway bottom line, a lot of people in Hillel do not wear underwear. And those who you think do, beware because as Tova says, looks can be decieving.

    Saturday, December 17, 2005

    Why On Earth Would Someone Take This?

    I was just reading the latest news on AOL News. I was about to close the window down till this headline caught my attention.

    Thieves Haul Off Mammoth Sculpture Near London

    I was curious to see what it was all about.

    Here's the opening paragraph:
    "LONDON (Dec. 17) - Thieves using a flatbed truck and a crane snatched a two-ton Henry Moore bronze of a reclining figure from the grounds of the late sculptor's foundation north of London, police said Saturday." (the link has a picture of the sculpture)

    For those of you that are wondering, the sculpture's measurements are 11 3/4 feet long, 6 1/2 feet high and 6 1/2 feet wide.

    I'm shocked that artwork by Henry Moore was stolen. What I find surprising, to say the least, is the method that was used and how the thieves were able to get away.

    So this brings me back to my original question(s)-What on earth would someone want this?

    Where would someone keep this thing? A two-ton sculpture thats worth over $5.2 millon is not the easiest thing to hide.

    Things I Miss and Other Negative Late-Night Thoughts (its only 12:30 but it feels later)

    1) No sundays: I said it once and ill say it again, fridays just dont cut it. Stay up late blogging on a saturday night and youll miss davening and morning seder.

    2) Lack of snow: Well as of yet us North Americans have been deprieved of winters most important aspect. Imagine that, the year without a winter.

    3) No American Football on sunday afternoon. While I'm sitting in shuir learning the wisdom of G-d, many of my fellow Americans have the privilege of enjoying a nice afternoon of beer and football, well I damn well miss that. Well I guess you could say we have this thing called Kadur Regel and all, but it just doesn't quite measure up to the entertainment level of some good ole steroid juiced All-American pigskin chasing. I'm sure many of you will blast my insensitive and US-centric remarks against the worlds favorite game. But guess what? USA, USA, USA....

    4) What about Subways?? I know this sounds strange and all, but my New York blood simply can't tolerate living without the musicians in the 42nd street subways (although the musicians in the tunnel under the road between binyane ha-uma and the central bus station in J-town do a nice imitation of the real thing), that indescribable subway smell, the noise of a subway coming down the tunnel, that beeping noise before the doors close, and of course the announcement on the 6 train 68th street, "this is 68th street, Hunter College".

    5) Too much edible and non-edible Chicken (we already discussed this one)

    6) Those chiloni chicks have this rather divine way of forgetting to put on various articles of clothing when they leave the house. I suppose this an affect of all that Chummus, I hope someone will be kind enough to remind me if I fall victim to such malnutrition. Ok, so I had to add this one in to sound a little frum, you can put this one in the "Things I love about the Holy/not-always-so-Holy Land plot of land" post when I eventually get around to.

    7) Israelis like speaking English, perhaps i can learn it by talking to the walls? (people tend to do that at the western wall)

    8) I cant IM anyone because I'm sleeping long before y'all come online.

    9)........(Jews like complaining)

    Friday, December 16, 2005

    A Student Prayer

    Hey eveyone, especially my fellow facebookers. Oh, wait a minute, we're all on facebook. LOL. :-) My friend James posted this on my facebook wall yesterday. It made me laugh so hard that I want to share it with all of you.

    A Student Prayer

    Now I lay me down to study,
    I pray the Lord I won't go nutty.
    And if I fail to learn this junk
    I pray the Lord that I won't flunk.
    But if I do, don't pity me at all,
    Just lay my bones in the study hall,
    Tell my teacher I've done my best,
    And pile my books upon my chest.

    Now I lay me down to rest,
    To pray I'll pass the upcoming tests;
    But if I die before I wake,
    That's one less test I'll have to take.

    Pass this to all your friends you know are looking at a textbook right and now and wondering...huh? We learned that this year..

    Then: Get off Facebook and get back to work, lazybones!

    Good Luck on your finals!!!!!

    Now that you've read my post may I propose a suggestion- Let us all get together and unite in dilligence so we can all do well.

    Mazal Tovs All Around

    My sister just got a job at a top place. I walked into the kitchen to bake her cookies in celebration and passed my brother on his way out.
    "Hey Ars, congratulations on getting your license!"
    "Thanks, Dins," he said.
    Then I noticed my youngest brother reading the paper.
    "Oh, Joshy--I heard you're Talmud of the Week! Mazal tov!"
    He high fived me.
    I turned around and, noticing my mother, said, "Oh yeah! I got engaged!"

    (Because I know some people are bound to read that the wrong way...I'm not engaged. :))

    Shabbat Shalom everyone!

    QOTD: Very Uncharacteristic Brain lapse edition

    So we are making sandwiches for "The Midnight Run" (see here for backstory) when the normally astute Ian "Shabbos Goy/Gentile Giant/Sherminator/insert nickname here" Sherman here asked this question.

    "Wow this is alot of food but, Where are we gonna find this many homeless people?"

    jews in the news

    dina sent me this article. the guy interviewed randy and dina. read under "beyond the music."
    (i was asked to post it). :-)

    Thursday, December 15, 2005

    Death to the Birds

    Ever eat so much of a dead bird you never really liked that you wish it would just go extinct? Well thats how I feel about chickens. Honestly, this place serves us scrambled chicken fetuses for breakfast, breaded chicken for lunch and cooked chicken for dinner. I'm ovbiously exagerating but I've seen and eaten way too many dead fowls lately. As a result I hearby declare the opening of the Let Them Live campaign to officially broaden my diet, the proceeds will go to the Feed a Hungry Yeshiva Guy at Burgers Bar Foundation. FHYGBBF promises that its funds will go towards the proper consumption of at least one dead cow per day by a specially chosen yeshiva kid/guy/flipper/bocher like myself.

    I, guess I had it comin'

    So, I was headin' to Brooklyn on The 'F' train with Noservice aka Lenny and we were discussing the finer points of our religion. I was trying to make the point that even if you don't believe all of the historical events in the Torah, you can still accept alot of the commandments to help you lead a better life, ie. rules of Kosher food. We then discussed how rules governing Kosher food are based to make sure the food you eat is clean...then one of our fellow passengers joined the conversation.
    Lenny and I were then subjected to one of the funniest, slurring anti-semitic rant i have ever heard.
    It was absolutley classic. I then engaged him in conversation about the finer points of Judaism. I was already in a bad mood, a really bad mood. So I was in no mood to
    as he suggested. Instead I antagonized him by taking his biggoted barbs in stride. At this point by the way we have the attention of everyone in the car and they were all laughing their asses off. This one couple seemed to be almost hesitant to get off at their stop, lest they miss more hilarity. Anyway the guy continued to rant against Jews. He then said,
    "YOU JEWS ARE A PATHETIC RACE. LOOK AT YOU TWO."he belched, pointing at Leonid and myself. "YOU AIN'T EVEN WEARIN' YA' F*CKIN' BEANIE HATS..."

    At that point Lenny laughed so hard I pretty much lost him for the rest of the ride. I tried to point out to the gentleman that I was also black he said,

    "FUCK YOU, YOU AINT BLACK." That made everyone laugh.

    At that point he bet me a hundred bucks that I didn't have my "Crazy little beanie hat under my normal hat." At which point to the surprise of my adoring audience I lifted my hat to reveal my "crazy little beanie hat." What was even more surprising is that the crazy man then opened his wallet and pulled out a sizable stack of fifty dollar bills and handed me one.

    "I'LL GIVE YOU HALF." he said

    Normally I wouldn't have accepted fifty bucks from a delusional vagrant, but I could really use the cash. Really in all a rewarding ending.

    The lesson of the story? If a crazy black man starts yelling anti-semitic slurs on the 'F' train, don't punch him in the face, cuz he might give you fifty bucks.


    Millard Fillmore will have his own dollar coin when the US mint begins minting commemorative dollar coins for all the US presidents in 2007. Just a fun fact I ran across.

    Tuesday, December 13, 2005

    Shabbat in Indian Territory

    I know its a few weeks too late, but I sorta spent Shabbat Chaye Sarah in Indian Territory, er uh I mean Chevron. I'd had posted this a little earlier if it werent for the beaureucratic bungling of my yeshiva (i finally have regular access to punks), but what the heck, its all good.

    On Friday morning I got a ride from the Tachana ha-merkazit (central bus station) in Jerusalem to Gilo where I had to switch to a tank er uh i mean an armored bus. Those things honestly remind me if not of a tank than a submarine on wheels (dont ask). We sorta passed Beit Jala and Beit Lechem and a whole bunch of other Arab towns, the scarry part was that the road was often flanked by slabs of concrete which i think were to block sniper fire, not that I heard any. As we got closer to Chevron we saw these palestinian guys peddling flowers on the side of the highway from their donkey carts, no joke. It was strikingly similar to the Bronx without the donkey carts. Those donkeys simply cant compete with stolen shopping carts.

    Eventually we pulled into Kiryat Arba (Fort DB Cooper), the only problem was that I had to get to Chevron and apparently the bus we were on doesnt go there. Of course being resourceful as I all ways am I called up my Israeli contact who tells me to hitchhike to Hebron, Kikar Gross to be specific. Well to say the least that freaked me out a bit, I think a few years ago some people were shot waiting outside Kiryat Arba to hitchhike/tremp. After trying unsuccessfully for a while I ended up walking with a group of unarmed american yeshiva students down the road between Hebron and Kiryat Arba to Chevron.

    Eventually I got to where I had to go, and was sent to the Tel-Romeda neighborhood on top of Har Hevron near the carravans where i stayed for shabbat. I actually stayed in a home that was once owned by an arab who moved out when palestinian snipers hit his home while firing at jews.

    I forgot to mention that I wasnt the only jew in chevron that shabbat. The parsha of Chaye Sara is about the death of Sarah and Avraham as well as Avraham's buying of Ma'arat Hamachpela (literally "double cave") from Efron the Hittie. It is customary for peopel to go to chevron that shabbat and show their support for Jewish ownership of the land, especially since it was bought legally by our forefather, as far as how that reflects my own political flipping and de-flipping stay tuned.

    I davened that night at Machpela, with a whole load of other jews. That evening I had Seudat Shabbat outside in Shechunat Shalhevet (named after the infant Shalhevet Pass who was brutally murderd by a palestinian sniper a few years ago). The whole area had plaques dedicated to people murdered their in the past few years during the Intifada. The neighborhood itself was in a valley overlooked by hundreds of arab homes. We even had a IDF sniper on the roof of the building next to us and another soldier who was watching the arab cemetary to make sure no one snuck through it. The neighborhood itself has a bit of a controversial history, it was owned by jews who lived their before the 29' massacre and afterwards taken over by arabs. jews returned to it when they returned to chevron, however the arabs are currently pressing to take it for themselves. What else is new?

    That night I spent some time dancing (the orthodox jewish type, go figure) in Kever Yitzchak in Machpela, which is cool because its a Mosque which is rarely opened to Jews.

    That night for some strange reason an Israeli kid who decided he was dumb enough not to bring a sleeping bag decided to park himself on my matress in the middle of the night. fair to say I was pretty close to beating the Hummus out of him.

    On shabbat morning I prayed in the "grave area" of Avraham and Sarah. The truth is that no one really knows exactly where the particular couples are buried, its most likely that they lie somewhere underneath in the actual cave complex, and not in the symbolic "tombs" above ground. While walking to machpela that morning we ended up passing a group of palestinian kids going to school as well as a group of westerners with radical leftwing leanings, I guess you could say it reminded me of Hunter, are those socialists still there on the 3rd floor?

    The rest of the day went rather smoothly with an excelent tour of Jewish Chevron that is currently influencing my political thoughts regarding the area.

    As you might assume i got back to school all in one piece, and well... to say this was definitly the coolest shabbat of my life is an understatement, it beats all previous adventures combined. So strike those other posts from the record. Now ill try and get a little bit of sleep.

    say ai.

    How awesome would a hillel sleep over party, which included a game of man hunt be?!?

    All in favor?

    Happy Birthday, Punks of Zion!

    Today is the 1st Anniversary for Punks. I don't have that much time to do a real year-in-review post because I have a story due tomorrow and a paper due on Thursday, but I'll give you a little something.

    We started Punks with "Why I'm Flunking My Way Out of School," a little post about why I was doing poorly in school. While I'm glad that I'm not still involved with that stupid Nazi sign, I wish I had an excuse for why I'm flunking out this semester... We posted The Punks Of Awards, posts about Bombs, and divrei Torah in our first month alone. Since then, we've been added to the Jewlicious blog list (as well as blog lists on other sites), expanded our group of posters, and all around wasted a lot more time than we did the year before.

    I was going to write a little something about each of the posters, but I have no time. So here's a little game: First person to figure out which person is which blogger gets a special prize. It probably won't be anything bigger than an e-card, but what can a bunch of broke college students offer?

    Here's the key:

    1. BrownsvilleGirl
    2. elder punk of zion
    3. D.B. Cooper
    4. The Nucular Jew
    5. Mesiach
    6. sweetspastic
    7. doni
    8. Neshekshemesh
    9. hotpinkhunny
    10. Brown Eyed Girl
    11. Baal Teshuv'a Benny
    12. Lost in Service








    Also, the only rule is that you can't play if you're a Punks blogger or if you know us from school and already know who we all are.
    Knock yourselves out! :)

    Sunday, December 11, 2005

    Why Does Sunday Exists?

    I'm sitting here on Sunday night, around 7:07, about to go and get some dinner. I've realized, however, that I haven't done too many productive things today. I did study a little bit of psychology, and sure, I e-mailed a cousin or two, but why does Sunday exist? All the other days have purpose! Let's see what the other days have to offer

    This day is necessary, unfortunately, to reintroduce people to the workfoce/school week. Monday is a day no one really likes, but it's almost nice to get back to work or school, depending on how much you like your job/school. Whatever it is, Monday has a very defined purpose, and it cannot be terminated.

    We all know the Monday is the official return to work, but who REALLY does work on Monday? We leave it all until Tuesday! Tuesday starts the hard work, and is the hardest day to get through. It's not as if you're recovering from a weekend, and you certainly don't have a weekend to look forward too. This is also a big day for the postal service, as more junk mail and bills arrive on Tuesday than any other day, because most things are mailed on Friday.

    What can I say about the middle of the week? It's that breaking point. When you come home on Wednesday, you know it's not long until you're off for another weekend. Without this transition period from former to latter part of the week, I think we'd all just go insane.

    This is when the weekend starts. You heard me, the weekend. When you come home on Thursday, it's all downhill, especially if you keep Shabbos. What's in a Friday anyway? Not too much work, I can tell you from experience. So this is the last real day of work. Thursday is a great night to go out and see friends, of kick back with your wife/roomate/boyfriend/girlfriend and have a good night.

    We all know that Friday is one of the greatest days in the week. For those secular people, it's a night of debochery, and for religious people, it's the same, just a different kind. Friday involves family and friends, a fair amount of drinking, and an excellent dinner, usually followed by a bedtime later that you thought.

    Another great day, totally free. No work, period. Even Saturday night, who does work? Only people with no lives and 99 averages! But who talks to them anyway? Saturday night is a great night to unwind the week, chill with friends, and maybe engage in some billiards, bowling, or a night out at the movies. Hell, you could even rent a movie and watch it at home alone, and it'd be ok!

    Now here it is. What the hell do you do with a Sunday. Yes, I studied, but I can do that on any day of the week. I untangled my tzitzit that got tangled in the washing machine, but wow, that could have happened on any day of the week. I didn't communicate with anyone yet, except my immediate family. Me going to get dinner represents the first time I'll be leaving my house today.

    Either Sundays suck, or I have no life, or both.

    Enjoy your Sunday night :-P

    Friday, December 09, 2005

    Good Shabbos

    Shabbat shalom to all.

    And while we're gone for the day, here's something to think about: If a rocket man said to you, "all this science, I don't understand. It's just my job five days a week." Wouldn't that make you nervous?

    Thursday, December 08, 2005

    My Computer Speaks

    My computer has a very, very, very deep voice.

    I froze.
    "Hello?" It repeated.
    "What? Hi...Zvi? Are we talking?"
    "But, what? Hi?"
    Little did I know; my computer has a microphone.

    I upgraded my Yahoo! Messenger last night so that I could send my friend Zvi a file (since Ben was sending me a file on AIM) to Yahoo! Talk. As is apparent by the "talk" part of Yahoo! Talk, you can talk through it. It's just that, well, I didn't know that I had that capability on my computer. Which leads me to my next point: why was my computer so ill designed?

    The speakers-in-front thing never bothered me. That is, until I started using the mics...which are very conveniently located on the sides of my computer. See now, just how much greater would it be for the mics to be in the front and the speakers to be on the sides? Y'know, like how a head works.

    Furthermore, my friend noticed when we were talking that my computer fan makes a lot of whirring noises. Well, duh, because it's always on. And why is it always on? Because it's on the bottom of my computer! How is it supposed to blow air out if it's always on something when it's on? My computer is, unfortunately, no David Blaine.

    Anyway, I should be working on my paper.

    What Do You Want to Do With Your Life?

    Maybe its just me but with the end of the year rolling around and the holidays just around the corner, I find myself contemplating on life, my life to be exact. What we do and how we act have the ability to affect other people, with the immediate person being affected ourselves.

    I recently found this website

    I think you should all check it out. You basiclly make up a list of things you want to do and share it with others. You can ask for advice from other people that have accomplished the goal you are aiming for. If you want you can share your adventures by making individual posts in respect to each of your goals. In fact, I wrote back to someone earlier tonight when they asked for help on accomplishing their goal to fold a 1000 paper cranes.

    One of my goals is to become immortalized as a flavor of ice cream. I'm not kidding guys. The legendary football coach at Penn State got an ice cream flavor made in his honor at the campus ice cream shop. Peachy Purturno. (I think thats how you spell his name) Why shouldn't I have my own ice cream?

    I'm thinking something along the line of Haagen-Dazz's Rasberry Sorbet and Vanilla Frozen Yogurt swirl but blended together to make berry pink color. I can see it now-" Helen's Pretty in Pink Berry Frozen Yogurt"

    Tuesday, December 06, 2005

    Cooking for Hanukkah

    Yes, I the token Asian and Gentile of Punks am getting ready for the holidays.

    As all of you know I love latkes. It not even Hanukkah yet I order these delightful treats when I'm at Mendy's. I eat them with mustard and eat the applesauce for dessert. Counts as a fruit serving. = )

    Anyway, I was surfing the net for good recipies and I came across this.
    They look and sound tasty. Even our vegeterrian Queen of Chulent(Dina) can enjoy them.

    Favorite Foods of Hanukkah
    Tsuni's White Squash Latkes
    Tsuni's Potato Latkes
    Barbecued Vegetables with Basil-Garlic Vinaigrette
    Skewered New Potatoes and Onions
    Vegetarian Borscht

    Sunday, December 04, 2005

    The Rabbi Showdown

    So I was sitting here, reading my psychology textbook, studying for my test tomorrow, and I came up with one of the best ideas ever. Are you ready for it?

    First, lets preface this idea. Recently, I heard about a rabbi's "ruling" on a certain topic, and I told my rabbi. He said he didn't know why, and said he'd call his uncle and find out, and if necessary, call the rabbi who made the initial "ruling". I thought to myself "Holy crap, are they going to have a rabbi showdown"?!

    Needless to say, they are going to have one. And here's how it's going to work!

    Firstly, lets get serious. No showdown is complete without a cage. This Rabbi Showdown is going in cage match style. Lets use fake names for now, we've got Rabbi Rubensteinberger (Rabbi R. for short) v. Rabbi Livshitzsteinerfarb (Rabbi L. for short). Yes, they are both VERY ashkenazi rabbis.

    Rabbi R. enters the cage first, since he's the rabbi who made the ruling and he's "defending his title", so to speak. He sits down at his table, and in comes the challenging rabbi, Rabbi L. (the crowd cheers at this point, because the battle is about to begin). They each wip out their Chumash, and then comes the draft. The defending Rabbi R choses a tractate of the Talmud, and the Rabbi L picks two, then back to Rabbi R for a second pick, then they each make their final choices. They each come out with 3 books of Talmud to prove their case.

    Then comes the really intense bit. They each get to chose a commentary of their choice, except Rashi, because he comes with the Chumah. Depending on what commentary they pick, they get a handycap. For example, if one guy picks Rambam, he's working on a pretty solid, widely accepted commentator, so he gets less points to start. If some guy pick the Satmar Rebbe, he's pretty contraversial, so you get more point for picking him.

    So they've pick their books now, and they're ready to go at it. Whoever passes out last wins!

    I can't believe I just reduced rabbinic discussions to something out of MTV... how sick AM I!?

    Rock the Night at Hunter 2

    For those who find difficulty in reading the flyer (yeah, yeah, I'm no pro.), Jon and I are organizing the second annual Rock the Night at Hunter! This year, it'll be on Wednesday, December 14th (that's the night before the last day of school--pj party the next morning, anyone?) at Brookdale Hall at 7pm.
    For those of you who were there last year, you definitely don't want to miss this one--it is going to be awesomely better. And those who weren't even at the last--you MUST come!!!
    Alright, time for me to retire the exclamation marks and stop this post. :) Oh, and for those who like the fractal I used for the background, a friend of mine made it. (You can check out the other ones he's made

    This word is too cool for school


    Main Entry: ses·qui·pe·da·lian
    Pronunciation: "ses-kw&-p&-'dAl-y&n
    Function: adjective
    Etymology: Latin sesquipedalis, literally, a foot and a half long, from sesqui- + ped-, pes foot -- more at FOOT
    1 : having many syllables : LONG "sesquipedalian terms"
    2 : given to or characterized by the use of long words "a sesquipedalian television commentator"

    Makes diphthong seem less cool, even though it still is.

    Saturday, December 03, 2005

    Because Dina thinks I should post every so often...

    I need your opinion.

    Back in the day, when I was about in eighth grade, my family got the internet. It was very crappy, and I had no screen name. One night, at my friend Moria's house, she suggested we create a screen name for me. Moriah suggested, that I being a huge Yankees fan, should have my screen name be about that, and screen name YanksFan784 was born. After using this screen name for about a year and a half, my family decided to join the (at the time) ever so popular AOL craze, and I got a new screen name.

    But after a while we got rid of AOL for reasons still unknown to me, and I created yet another screen name, CrazyDiamond784. However, this was not taken after a Pink Floyd song, as believed. It was actually in fact from the Beatles's song, Lucy in the Sky, and because my friend Robin and I were considered Crazy (but tons of fun) by many people.

    I had this screen name throughout most of High School until I started working at my EMT job. My work's computers refused to let me sign on under that screen name. So I changed my screen name yet again, to the screen name you all know TVACBrainFreeze. For a couple of years, I considered going back to one of the old screen names, but I I figured, everyone knows this one, why cange back.

    Well, this is exactly the reason to change. After having a HUGE listof people on block, and having them just make up new screen names to message me on, I have decided to just change back. So, which of my old screen names should I go back to?

    I know this has nothing to do with punks, but I needed a post, so I won't be kicked off punks again.
    Check out our Punks tees!

    And our really cool MFFC:HCC tees!

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