I post a lot about politics on Facebook — so much so, in fact, that I suspect that even close friends have unfollowed me. That’s OK: The state of the world is important to me, and I want to share…both the news and ways that people can get involved. And if people don’t want to hear it, that’s their choice. But I’m human, too. And there are times when I am sitting at my kitchen table just before 7 a.m., amid the detritus of abandoned child breakfasts, and I find myself thinking about stupid… >> Read More
Two weeks ago, I got a call from my local butcher. “Hi, Shannon? Yeah, it’s Harold,” he said. “Did your neighbor Stephanie have her baby yet? I know she’s due soon and wanted to see if they…need anything.” “Oh yeah,” he added, almost as an afterthought, “we have some great short ribs this week— do you want some?” I hung up the phone after sharing, no, she hadn’t yet had the baby, and, yes — of course I want some short ribs. I suddenly realized: I basically live in a shtetl.… >> Read More
"One of my friends said to me, 'Come on, we're going to go to Wendy's for Shabbat,'" says Roberta Mahler, 87. "I said, 'Wendy's? Shabbat?' I couldn't believe this."
So begins Wendy's Shabbat, a…delightful short film about a group of elderly Jews in Palm Desert, California, who gather at the fast food restaurant every Friday night for Shabbat dinner. Directed by Rachel Myers, the charming four-minute film profiles this remarkable group that's thinking outside the bun — er, box. (Wait -- that's a Taco Bell slogan. Let's just say… >> Read More
In the last year or two, I’ve noticed that my oldest son has become more distant and moody. He spends hours texting alone with his friends, shirks my hugs, and generally appears annoyed and…disinterested. Although I know that this can be a normal part of entering adolescence, I still feel a sting of sadness to see my once over-enthusiastic little boy morphing into a sullen teenager. I wonder sometimes if mainstream American adolescence is really “normal” or more of a cultural phenomena. Last month, my local Chabad had… >> Read More
This is the story of how a Jewish couple added to and became part of our changing America. But more important, this story is about what I learned when my wife, Robina, and I were introduced via our…son to a religion, culture and traditions that we thought were so different from ours. It’s also a story about love, respect and acceptance. On October 17, 1971, I married my high-school sweetheart. Nine years later, after two miscarriages and years of fertility treatments, our son, Jared, was born. Because we didn’t want Jared to… >> Read More