Monday, September 27, 2010

Have you cried for Moshiach lately?

Sorry it has been awhile since I last updated. With all my writing about America's Next Top Model here, here, and here, I'm afraid my brain's capacity for snark and frivolity had been maxed out.

Thankfully, my friend (and designer of this site), Hillel sent me this link, which I awoke to this morning- Tears for Moshiach. In the ten minute preview (though it felt longer with only half a cup of coffee in my system), you can find out how you, with sentimental music and overwrought narration, can hasten the coming of the Messiah.

"You will hear and see unimaginable events," the narrator booms- such as scenes imagined by the special effects department of the Day After Tomorrow? Or cheap recreations of Holocaust movies? Or the asteroid scene from Armageddon (though nothing involving Liv Tyler and Ben Affleck thankfully).

The viewer gets to travel back in time to see Hashem saving the Jews from miracles- or is it the Scots from the English during Braveheart? Or the final stand of the 300? Someone in Hollywood should look at this film for possible copyright infringement.

"The message within this film has the power to show us the true greatness of Hashem and how special we Klal Yisrael are to our Father, Avinu Sh'bashamayim....Tragedies that can only be a message from Hashem that He wants something from us." How do we know this- cause so many people have died. Clearly, God has a message for us. (Now, not to go all Shalom Auslander here, but it does have the ring of an abusive relationship- "He hits me but he loves me." But I think Sassy Gay Friend says it better when he's giving advice to the Giving Tree.


"This is turning into a snuff film!")

If you'd like to watch the hour and forty (!) minute film instead of the randomly selected clips from disaster movies, then all you got to do is pay 15 bucks and you can get your waterworks on for Moshiach.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

My life as a Venn diagram

Today at work I was discussing an essay with an editor, who was trying to help me figure out what the narrative arc of the piece is. Since the story was of a personal nature, essentially we were trying to figure out Me. She pulled out a pencil and notepad and began to draw. "This is who you are, what you write about," she said pushing a slip of paper towards me.

There it was, my writing career, my life, represented as a Venn diagram!

In one circle you've got Orthodox [Judaism] and in the other you've got Popular Culture. I occupy the itty bitty space where the two overlap. I think any regular reader of this blog will agree with my editor's Venn depiction of my life.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Is it written in the stars?

Last week I attended the book launch party for Wendy Shanker's new memoir, Are You My Guru? How Medicine, Meditation, and Madonna Saved My Life at Susan Shapiro's apartment in the Village. There were several gurus present- the author, Ms. Shanker, body acceptance guru (her first book was the successful The Fat Girl's Guide to Life), a writing one in the form of Ms. Shapiro, and Jenny Lynch, an astrologer who read Ms. Shanker's chart for the book and gave her some sage advice and guidance.

Ms. Lynch was offering free brief readings to anyone who wanted one. Towards the end of the evening, I sat down to know my fortune. She asked me for the basics- date of birth, time of day (which I couldn't give to the half hour), location. And then she proceeded to tell me what the next year would look like for me- full of energy and professional success. She definitely seemed to think I was on the right path. As for romantic potential, she was equally sanguine about my potential though she doesn't think it's happening anytime soon. I was told that December, around Christmas, will be a good time for me to meet my mate and that he'll likely be older and more professionally established. Matzo Ball and Sugar Daddy here I come! (And medical insurance.)

While she got things right about me right off the bat ("I'm seeing some problems with authority here," she said, pointing to my star chart), she missed some other ones. (She noted that my father must have been a man of tremendous authority for me. To which I responded, "If by authority you mean absent and living in Florida since I was 7...") Yet despite this error (and a few less egregious ones), I walked away from my consultation feeling buoyant and hopeful.

It's not necessarily because I believe in astrology- I actually don't know how I feel about it and haven't given the subject much thought- but there's something nice when a stranger supposedly possess of an extra layer of insight tells you that everything is going to be alright, that you're on the right path, especially on the eve of Rosh Hashana.

So is it all simply written in stars? I don't know. And I guess I'll have to wait until December to see if that prediction goes into the win column.

Monday, September 6, 2010

How Quickly We Forget

Last year when I finished the Hazon New York Ride, I swore I would never do it again. On the first day, I injured my hip but didn't tell the medics because I didn't want to be taken off the route because I suffer from an excess of pride and stupidity. (And on the very first day of the retreat, this happened.)

The second day of cycling was miserable because the hip worsened as I hit pedaled the hills and Ruth Messinger (amongst others) left me in their dust. When I dismounted at JTS, I swore I would never do this to myself again. While I was proud of myself for completing the course after so little training and with almost no cycling experience, I was unable to walk for two weeks properly afterward.

Fast forward one year. True to my oath, I didn't register for the New York Ride. Instead I went as crew, giving the riders lifts, loading and unloading cars and facilitating in any way I was directed, and at first I was glad to be driving instead of pedaling. But as the ride progressed and despite the difficulty of the route (it was especially hilly), I was filled with jealousy. I wanted to grab one of the bikes (a light one, not a beast like the one I own), the pain of last year forgotten. I guess biking upwards of 100 miles sort of like what my mother told me about childbirth- immediately after, you swear you're going to get sterilized. Then, as time goes on, you forget and foolishly do it all over again. That's how the earth gets populated and people sign up for fundraising bike rides.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Now blogging over at Tablet

Today is my first day blogging (and interning) over at Tablet. It's been a long time since I worked in an office not located inside my apartment and have had to put on street clothes before noon. Also, I've had to fight the impulse to break out into song while I'm working. There are others around who can here me now.

Now this does not mean that I will no longer blog here. Most of my work is not fit for a respectable Jewish publication so I will still write here as often as I do or say something embarrassing and/or scandalous. But please check me out over there, too.

Here is the link to my first official Scroll post (that's the name of their blog). It's about 90210 Day.