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Take Off Those Granny Glasses, Zayde Shades Are Here!

Some zaydes are tall, and some are short. Some are fat and some are thin. But they all seem to have this in common: They wear absolutely enormous eyewear. We don’t know why everyone’s grandpa favors saucer-sized sunglasses; we just know that it’s true. Fortunately, this summer, the look is in fashion. Borrow Zayde’s super-sized styleRead More


Scared Blind Date Might Lead to Pulpit Marriage

By Wendy Belzberg

I am a 30-year-old single man. A friend of mine wants to set me up with a woman who is studying to become a rabbi. She sounds like a wonderful person in every way — bar the career she has chosen. When I asked her if she intended to teach, she informed me that she wants to be a pulpit rabbi. I cannot envision myselfRead More


How Celia Cruz Saved an Amazon Night

By Ira Rifkin

I came of age at just the right time to enjoy Celia Cruz — the greatest female singer salsa has ever produced — in her prime, and for her to help shape my lifelong musical tastes. Without her knowing it, she once helped get me out of a frightening situation in a drug-saturated Peruvian river town.Some 40 years ago — between doo-wop and theRead More


An End to Blood Feuds?

By Burton L. Visotzky

This Sabbath we announce the coming of Av, the month about which the Mishna teaches: “When Av begins, diminish joy.” Given the sorry litany of events that befell the Jewish people during this month, it’s no wonder that the Mishna counsels against rejoicing. The Mishna lists five tragic events that took place on the 9th of Av: TheRead More


DER YIDDISH-VINKL July 25, 2003

Once again, Der Vinkl is pleased to offer our readers still another tasty dish of family humor drawn from the Yiddish Forverts under the title of khendelekh. The editor of the feature is Rukhl Shaechter, who seems to have an inexhaustible reservoir of such amusing tiny tales. The transliteration is by Goldie Gold, the English version by Gus Tyler.Read More


The Village Green: A Big City’s Small-Town Vibe

By Marjorie Ingall

A couple of years ago, I got stuck on the M14 crosstown bus at rush hour. This is because I am an idiot. But it gave me ample time to chat with my seatmate, an elderly Jewish woman who, as it turns out, had lived on my street as a child. She laughed out loud when I told her where I lived. “My family worked so hard to get out ofRead More


Once Upon a Time in Iraq; Two Funds Fight Cancer

By Masha Leon

At the July 1 Jewish Community Relations Council of New York presentation “A Walk Through Jewish Iraq,” Alice Hecht, chief administrative officer of the U.N. Monitoring, Verification and Inspection Commission, using slides and film clips, recapped her 1996 through 1998 visits to Baghdad’s old Jewish quarter “betweenRead More


Going West on the Road to Happyville

Is there anything more American than the long automobile trip en famille? For some families, like that of writer Calvin Trillin, who grew up in Kansas City, Mo., during the 1930s and ’40s, taking to the road, especially in the years following the war, was a kind of annual contest, pitting endurance against distance. Writing in his poignantRead More


We Knew We Had a Landmark Case

By Judith Bolton-Fasman

Then drew near the daughters of Zelophehad…. And they stood before Moses, and Eleazar the priest, and before the princes and all the congregation, at the door of the tent of meeting, saying… [Numbers 27:1-2]

“I am Machlah, one of the daughters of Zelophehad. We are five sisters altogether. Tirzah is our center.Read More


DER YIDDISH-VINKL July 18, 2003

A recurrent feature in the Forverts is titled “Mishpokhe Khendlekh,” which may be roughly translated as “Household Humor.” In other words, it is humor fit for the mishpokhe. Indirectly, it makes a point: One can be funny without being smutty.What follows are two such delightful stories. (The column is edited by Rukhl Schaechter.) TheRead More





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  • "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
  • Woody Allen on the situation in #Gaza: It's “a terrible, tragic thing. Innocent lives are lost left and right, and it’s a horrible situation that eventually has to right itself.”
  • "Mark your calendars: It was on Sunday, July 20, that the momentum turned against Israel." J.J. Goldberg's latest analysis on Israel's ground operation in Gaza:
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