Miriam Hoffman


Geleh: A Love Story

By Miriam Hoffman

Geleh: A Love Story
My father was at one time a handsome and elegant young man — tall, with broad shoulders and a forelock of curly red hair. He loved flirting with the girls. He told me that many young women had set their sights on him, but that he cared for only one of them — Geleh. She boasted a pair of hot flaming eyes and a head of silky blonde hair; she was sensuous, agile and clever. Her mother kept close watch on her and commented on every move she made — “Don’t go out with this one, don’t hang around with that one.”Read More


A Little Story About A Coat

By Miriam Hoffman

A Little Story About A Coat
You really need to find a way to cope with our harsh northern winters. Foremost, Lady Luck must help you land a good winter coat, and to my delight she did just that for me last year. Entirely by chance I stumbled into a fur shop, and as soon as we saw each other — the coat and I, that is — we knew that we were a fit, a perfect match, and that we would embark on an intimate and warm journey together.Read More


Saved by Kvass

By Miriam Hoffman

Saved by Kvass
One afternoon, Mendl called and asked me to throw on something nice and meet him at the newly refurbished offices, where they were holding a housewarming party. The little gathering was being held to celebrate the launching of their new business partnership.Read More


My Mother and Joseph Stalin

By Miriam Hoffman

My Mother and Joseph Stalin
What was the relationship between Miriam Hoffman’s mother and Stalin? They both used the same railway tracks: he on his way to the Kremlin, she on her way to the Gulag.Read More


The Wedding Ring

By Miriam Hoffman

The Wedding Ring
Every person has a unique history but the stories of those who endured and survived Hitler’s hell are not only singular but exceptional; a survivor’s past encompasses mysteries of a thousand and one horrors which would require many lifetimes to recount. My friend Lily herself stood at the entrance to the gas chambers, praying for an easy death. But she was spared, not because she was so unusually beautiful or clever or talented, but because the Angel of Death is a capricious character.Read More






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    • "My wife and I are both half-Jewish. Both of us very much felt and feel American first and Jewish second. We are currently debating whether we should send our daughter to a Jewish pre-K and kindergarten program or to a public one. Pros? Give her a Jewish community and identity that she could build on throughout her life. Cons? Costs a lot of money; She will enter school with the idea that being Jewish makes her different somehow instead of something that you do after or in addition to regular school. Maybe a Shabbat sing-along would be enough?"
    • Undeterred by the conflict, 24 Jews participated in the first ever Jewish National Fund— JDate singles trip to Israel. Translation: Jews age 30 to 45 travelled to Israel to get it on in the sun, with a side of hummus.
    • "It pains and shocks me to say this, but here goes: My father was right all along. He always told me, as I spouted liberal talking points at the Shabbos table and challenged his hawkish views on Israel and the Palestinians to his unending chagrin, that I would one day change my tune." Have you had a similar experience?
    • "'What’s this, mommy?' she asked, while pulling at the purple sleeve to unwrap this mysterious little gift mom keeps hidden in the inside pocket of her bag. Oh boy, how do I answer?"
    • "I fear that we are witnessing the end of politics in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I see no possibility for resolution right now. I look into the future and see only a void." What do you think?
    • Not a gazillionaire? Take the "poor door."
    • "We will do what we must to protect our people. We have that right. We are not less deserving of life and quiet than anyone else. No more apologies."
    • "Woody Allen should have quit while he was ahead." Ezra Glinter's review of "Magic in the Moonlight": http://jd.fo/f4Q1Q
    • Jon Stewart responds to his critics: “Look, obviously there are many strong opinions on this. But just merely mentioning Israel or questioning in any way the effectiveness or humanity of Israel’s policies is not the same thing as being pro-Hamas.”
    • "My bat mitzvah party took place in our living room. There were only a few Jewish kids there, and only one from my Sunday school class. She sat in the corner, wearing the right clothes, asking her mom when they could go." The latest in our Promised Lands series — what state should we visit next?
    • Former Israeli National Security Advisor Yaakov Amidror: “A cease-fire will mean that anytime Hamas wants to fight it can. Occupation of Gaza will bring longer-term quiet, but the price will be very high.” What do you think?
    • Should couples sign a pre-pregnancy contract, outlining how caring for the infant will be equally divided between the two parties involved? Just think of it as a ketubah for expectant parents:
    • Many #Israelis can't make it to bomb shelters in time. One of them is Amos Oz.
    • According to Israeli professor Mordechai Kedar, “the only thing that can deter terrorists, like those who kidnapped the children and killed them, is the knowledge that their sister or their mother will be raped."
    • Why does ultra-Orthodox group Agudath Israel of America receive its largest donation from the majority owners of Walmart? Find out here: http://jd.fo/q4XfI
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