Friday, February 21, 2020


Toldot: Of Parsha and Ping Pong

He became suspicious when he won at thumb wrestling.

Ari had never beaten Shira at thumb wrestling. Never. Not once.

Then he beat her twice in one day.

The same thing happened with ping pong. He had once defeated his older sister

Expanding our Jewish Horizons

A recent article in a Jewish publication describes a memorial event open to the public which will end with what it describes as the “quintessential Jewish memorial prayer Keil Malei Rahamim.” The author does not take cognizance of the Sephardic memorial prayer called the Hashkavah. Regrettably, this limited perspective is typical among

Hooked Up

The following was written in Cheshvan 5771/October 2010.

It is with utmost gratitude to Hashem Yisborach that we announce and celebrate the birth of our daughter this past Monday, 17 Cheshvan 5771.

When we were discussing the baby with our children a few

Gridlock Like Never Before

The term “gridlock” was unknown to us until Mordechai was stopped on the Northway between Montreal and Albany for speeding many years ago. After he was pulled over in Wilton, New York, a thriving shtetl that apparently makes its money from such stops, he was informed by the police officer that he was under arrest for an unpaid

What’s Up?

Do you remember the phrase “What’s Up?” You would see your friend in school and say, “Hey, what’s up?” If you wanted to be funny, you would say, “Hey dude, what is up?” If the dude wanted to be funny, he would say, “The sky, the clouds, the trees...” and everyone would have a good laugh. No one ever really answered the

Tickled Pink

As a man, I don’t know a whole lot of colors. I know what ROY G. BIV stands for, though I have no idea what indigo is, and I even know a few colors besides those—black, white, grey, pink, brown and a large number of colors that I classify as “beige.” And that’s about it.

Yes, I’m

Kristallnacht and Today

November 9 is a day that we commemorate every year: the anniversary of Kristallnacht, the night of broken glass. We remember the pogrom against the Jews of Germany and Austria carried out by the Nazi paramilitary forces. Jewish homes, hospitals and schools were ransacked and destroyed; homes and shuls and the like that had stood for

Social Security: Takeaways Under the Recent Budget Bill

You probably don’t know it, but the government may have just picked your pocket with regard to future Social Security benefits. The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, signed into law by President Obama on November 2, will greatly reduce the effectiveness of two little-known strategies to maximize Social Security benefits—namely, suspension

Planning Lessons From a Sad End to an American Icon

I want to take you back to an earlier time, a simpler time. A time before the Internet. A time before we could say, “I want to listen to that Taylor Swift (or Uncle Moishy) song,” go to YouTube, and watch it on demand. In those ancient days we used to have to wait until our favorite song came on the radio. And if we wanted to know what

Federation and Jewish Education

I have lived in Bergen County for 44 years and I have been active in my synagogue, community affairs, UJA and several day schools. I have watched this community grow and flourish. I cannot fully understand how the leadership of a community with so many schools, a community with one of the densest as well as most committed Jewish

Aging in Place

This past weekend my husband and I were dining out with my 93-year-old uncle. We spend every weekend with him lingering over a delicious lunch while being waited on by caring and attentive staff at our favorite restaurant. We usually run into someone we know and this past week was no different.

A friend

In Memoriam: Heroes of the Skies

Around Veteran’s Day, it’s appropriate to look back at two of the mostly forgotten members of our family who served with distinction in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II. The war took the life of one of these heroes and forever transformed the other. Today, 70 years after the conclusion of hostilities in