Fast Forward


A Screening Room of His Own

By Aliza Phillips

As the sun sets on the second day — and first Friday — of the Sundance Film Festival, movie stars, producers and directors alike can head out to screenings or any number of by-invitation-only soirees to mingle with the rich, the famous and the beautiful. Or they can wander over to Temple Har Shalom, home of SchmoozeDance 2003.Unless you’veRead More


Arab-Jew Duo Perform a ‘Prayer’ for Peace on Piano

By Masha Leon

On January 5, two Palestinian homicide bombers blew themselves up in Tel Aviv, killing 22 and maiming more than 100. Two days later, on January 7 at Steinway Hall in Manhattan, Charlotte White’s Salon De Virtuosi presented the “Palestinian-Israeli Two Piano Team” of Saleem Aboud Ashkar and Shai Wosner in a program…Read More


Husband Losing Track of the Present While Prosecuting the Past

By Wendy Belzberg

Several years ago a car plowed into our front yard, destroying our porch and killing one of our dogs. My husband has been attempting to sue the driver ever since. His regular conversations with lawyers, insurance companies and even private detectives are draining our finances and taking a heavy emotional toll on our relationship. I haveRead More


What’s Cooking, Good Looking? Newbie Chef Curries Favor

By Max Gross

On September 1, 2002, the Hapless Jewish Writer was asked to remove himself from his place of residence. That request came from his parents.And although the HJW was known to complain loudly and frequently about living with mom and dad, there was a part of him that was terrified at being cast out of his Brooklyn Heights Eden. Could he find anRead More


For Tech-pop Star ‘My Robot Friend,’ Man Is the Machine

By Lisa Keys

You could say that Howard Rigberg rocks the “computer programmer” look: He wears wire-rimmed glasses and sports a heavy backpack draped over both of his shoulders. His hair is graying. He walks with a shuffle.Ask him a simple question — how old are you? — and you realize that Rigberg is possibly more of a technophile than the averageRead More


Those Magic Moments: Saying Shehecheyanu

By Marjorie Ingall

I always worry, when I’m writing this column, that people are rolling their eyes at my narcissism. Do I act as if I’m the first person ever to have a child? Am I annoyingly convinced that everything Josie does is brilliant and adorable? Am I the literary equivalent of your neighbor who constantly forces you to look at his vacation photos?Read More


A Light Shines Brightly From ‘Miracle on 16th Street’

By Masha Leon

Designating the Center for Jewish History “The Miracle on 16th Street,” its executive director, Joshua Plaut, welcomed guests to the center’s first board of directors and board of overseers’ fundraising dinner, held December 9 at its building.“We are kvelling at the success of our partner organizations,” Plaut said, alluding to theRead More


‘The Buchur’ Seeks Woman of Valor

By Alana Newhouse

Every now and then, something genuinely funny comes through our e-mail inbox. Last week, we got “The Buchur,” a yeshiva-ized version of the hit television show “The Bachelor,” in which one smarmy single guy flits between a gaggle of girls going gaga at the chance to get engaged. The parody comes from bangitout.com, a Web site that plays onRead More


DER YIDDISH-VINKL January 10, 2003

In the closing days of 2002, the Forverts dedicated its page on Jewish poetry to Chaim Grade on the occasion of his 20th yahrzeit. Born in Vilna in 1910, he won recognition by admission to a select literary group that called itself Yung Vilna. In 1948, he came to New York. Although, Grade (pronounced grah-de) dealt withRead More


Sportscaster Max Kellerman Pitches for the Mother Tongue

By Rukhl Schaechter

Last August, at the annual Yugntruf Youth for Yiddish retreat in Copake, N.Y., a bearded father pitched a softball to his developmentally disabled 8-year-old son, accompanying each toss with Yiddish words of encouragement. A young man with spiky hair approached the child and asked, “Vilst ikh zol dir vayzn?” (Do you want me to show you how?)Read More





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  • Happy birthday to the Boy Who Lived! July 31 marks the day that Harry Potter — and his creator, J.K. Rowling — first entered the world. Harry is a loyal Gryffindorian, a matchless wizard, a native Parseltongue speaker, and…a Jew?
  • "Orwell would side with Israel for building a flourishing democracy, rather than Hamas, which imposed a floundering dictatorship. He would applaud the IDF, which warns civilians before bombing them in a justified war, not Hamas terrorists who cower behind their own civilians, target neighboring civilians, and planned to swarm civilian settlements on the Jewish New Year." Read Gil Troy's response to Daniel May's opinion piece:
  • "My dear Penelope, when you accuse Israel of committing 'genocide,' do you actually know what you are talking about?"
  • What's for #Shabbat dinner? Try Molly Yeh's coconut quinoa with dates and nuts. Recipe here:
  • Can animals suffer from PTSD?
  • Is anti-Zionism the new anti-Semitism?
  • "I thought I was the only Jew on a Harley Davidson, but I was wrong." — Gil Paul, member of the Hillel's Angels. http://jd.fo/g4cjH
  • “This is a dangerous region, even for people who don’t live there and say, merely express the mildest of concern about the humanitarian tragedy of civilians who have nothing to do with the warring factions, only to catch a rash of *** (bleeped) from everyone who went to your bar mitzvah! Statute of limitations! Look, a $50 savings bond does not buy you a lifetime of criticism.”
  • That sound you hear? That's your childhood going up in smoke.
  • "My husband has been offered a terrific new job in a decent-sized Midwestern city. This is mostly great, except for the fact that we will have to leave our beloved NYC, where one can feel Jewish without trying very hard. He is half-Jewish and was raised with a fair amount of Judaism and respect for our tradition though ultimately he doesn’t feel Jewish in that Larry David sort of way like I do. So, he thinks I am nuts for hesitating to move to this new essentially Jew-less city. Oh, did I mention I am pregnant? Seesaw, this concern of mine is real, right? There is something to being surrounded by Jews, no? What should we do?"
  • "Orwell described the cliches of politics as 'packets of aspirin ready at the elbow.' Israel's 'right to defense' is a harder narcotic."
  • From Gene Simmons to Pink — Meet the Jews who rock:
  • The images, which have since been deleted, were captioned: “Israel is the last frontier of the free world."
  • As J Street backs Israel's operation in Gaza, does it risk losing grassroots support?
  • What Thomas Aquinas might say about #Hamas' tunnels:
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