Thursday, August 29, 2013

I'm *not* "all thumbs," & that's the problem (see comments)

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

His and hers oatmeal? (See comments.)

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Deli sandwich, without the "sandwich" part :(

Suggesting that we go to a kosher delicatessen for lunch turned out not to have been one of my better ideas.  Most of the lunch items on the menu were either sandwiches or salad platters, and since I can't eat either wheat, cole slaw, or potato salad . . . well, you get the picture.  The pastrami omelette was scrumptious, but, in addition to being high in cholesterol specifically, it was also pretty high in fat in general, which--you guessed it--is yet another thing that bothers my cranky digestive system.  Sigh.  I'm running out of restaurants.

I topped off my day's consumption with half a sheet of spelt matzah (a gift from a kind fellow congregant who's wheat-intolerant) and one chocolate rugelach (er, singular is "ruggle?"), just to be sure that I'd have some gluten in my system for tomorrow's gluten-intolerance blood test.  I think I can tolerate spelt, but, after the "fun" (er, "run") I had with Oreos this past Friday, I didn't dare have the wheat-based ruggle until we got home.

Monday morning update:
Lab tests, schmab tests--the unofficial results are already in, even though I haven't had the blood test yet.  Apparently, just as I can (currently) get away with eating Chinese food cooked with soy sauce that has wheat in it, or eating a small piece of challah and a small piece of donut without creating too many problems, but I can't eat a whole package of six Oreos, so, too, I can eat a one-inch-wide piece of spelt matzah, but not half a sheet.  Oy.

And my husband, just to keep me company in terms of medical (mis)adventures, has developed another kidney stone.  Or perhaps he's just becoming somewhat lactose intolerant, he speculates.  If so, welcome to the club--and be sure to cut your ice-cream servings in half.

Friday, August 23, 2013

My last-ever Oreos?

My gastroenterologist ordered me to get back on my "normal" diet until after Monday's blood test for gluten intolerance. So I decided to indulge in some Oreo cookies. And was quickly reminded of why I'm having myself tested for gluten intolerance. :( 

Sigh. Yet another food (or, in this case, an entire family of foods) that I can't eat, along with cabbage (which has the same effect on me as wheat), white potatoes (gout), too many nuts (chest pains from acid reflux), too much chocolate (chest pains from acid reflux, and heart palpitations), hot pepper(s) of any kind (black, white, red, jalapeno, etc.--a literal pain in the neck, er, throat), vinegar . . .  And to think that my husband said, correctly, that I was becoming difficult to feed even before I started having problems with wheat.

On the plus side, I've been spared diabetes (thus far). Thank heaven for big favors.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Adventures in public transit (see comments)

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Eydie Gorme, aleha ha-shalom/rest in peace

Talia counts the late Eydie Gorme as one of her Shining Stars of Davida.  The Jewish Week salutes this Sephardic Songstress.  My favorite--if one can have a favorite when it comes to obituaries--is on the Jewesses with Attitude blog here.  Said Stephen Benson "I dare you to listen to her sing “If He Walked Into My Life” here and not feel the expressive pull, the regret, the heartache as she hits every dramatic emotional nuance of this difficult song.  Not only is she technically right on the money, she nails it with aplomb and finish.  Listen to it, and I guarantee you’ll feel what Steve Lawrence felt about her: “I fell in love with her the moment I saw her and even more the first time I heard her sing.  While my personal loss is unimaginable, the world has lost one of the greatest pop vocalists of all time.”  Yes, do click on that link and watch and listen to a truly extraordinary singer give an extraordinary performance.

Much as I enjoyed her lighter work, such as "Blame It on the Bossa Nova," I was always fondest of Eydie Gorme as a consummate "torch singer."  The drama that she brought to torch songs was worthy of an actor, as you can see and hear in the linked video.

And what a voice!  I always envied her her ability to belt out even the highest notes when the lyrics called for it.  My own singing volume fades to nothing in my higher range.

She will be missed.

Parashat Ki Tetze, 5733/2013 thoughts

Basics here.

Just wanted to post a quick thought, slightly after the fact, regarding the ben sorer u'moreh, the stubborn and rebellious son, about whom we read yesterday.  (See D'varim/Deuteronomy 21:18-21.)  I've read a few commentaries regarding this rule, and what I find most interesting is that, even before the rabbis made this law almost impossible to enforce, the law as written had two unusual features.  One is that it removed from the father the life-and-death authority that was typical in that time and place--he needed to take the rebel to the elders to have the city residents stone his son to death.  The other, even more unusual, is that this is one of the rare instances in the Torah, to the best of my recollection, in which a woman--in this case, the rebellious child's mother--shared legal authority over just about anyone or anything.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Just in time (see comments)

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Parashat Shoftim, 5773/2013 thoughts

Basics here.

I’m quoting from a relatively-new old post of mine because the same thing caught my eye again this year (hey, at least I’m consistent J):

Another phrase that caught my eye here, which I’ve read in other parshiot, is “HaCohanim HaLeviyim/the Priests the Levites.” This could have two distinct meanings—either we could accept what I assume is the current interpretation, which is that all Cohanim were members of the Tribe of Levi, or this phrase might indicate that all the adult males of the entire tribe of Levi were priests, at some point in ancient Jewish history.

 More oldies but goodies, starting with three of my earliest posts:

 “ . . . concerns about assimilation go all the way back to the days of Joshua’s conquest. (So what else is new?) In this case, though, the solution seems more than a bit drastic to me, to say the least.”

“ . . . there was this gaping hole in the pursuit of justice or righteousness—there were those six indigenous peoples who were supposed to be slaughtered wholesale. This was not one of the Jewish people’s finer moments. Anyone who thinks that the Torah is a whitewash job ought to have his/her head examined.”

The rabbis’ interpretation of the prohibition against destroying fruit trees us (Deuteronomy, chapter 20, verses 19-20) was to forbid wastefulness. In theory, this is a fine basis for the modern environmental movement. In practice, though, this prohibition is honored more in the breach than in the observance. Once upon a time, a Bar or Bat Mitzvah celebration was marked by the sponsorship of a kiddush for the congregation and, perhaps, a luncheon or dinner for the invited family and friends. How did we get from there to here? Now, there’s a buffet that’s more than sufficient for a meal, followed by the meal, followed by the sort of entertainment that used to be reserved for a wedding. 

Simcha inflation” is a serious problem in current Jewish life, in all denominations.”

More interesting than the post is Miami Al's comment:

Blogger Miami Al said...

. . .
Interestingly, while we claim that the Torah has no timeline and is eternal, 2 lambs/day in settled Canaan was no big deal... Not spread across the 11 land owning tribes...

However, during 40 years in the desert, the idea that 30,000 lambs were available for sacrifice as a non-food seems a little far fetched.
WED APR 11, 09:55:00 AM 2012

Here's Conservadox on Shoftim and writing as a memory aid.

Tuesday, August 06, 2013

An attitude adjustment

After reading Rabbi Jonathan Sack's d'var Torah (roughly, Bible discussion) on Parashat Re'eh, I've decided that I should take a different approach when dining out with The Nibbler.  Maybe the anonymous commenter was right to call me judgmental--perhaps I should simply afford our nibbling guest the dignity of pretending that we're not treating her to dinner and not get upset about having to order two appetizers and two meals, rather than three meals, in order to sustain the illusion.

This post written Sun., Aug. 4.  I'm publishing this quickly from home, and won't have time to respond today--major project at the office.

Sunday, August 04, 2013

Unbelievable :( :( :(

It isn't every Shabbat/Sabbath morning that one walks into synagogue and encounters police officers.  The bad news--in the middle of the night on Shabbat, someone got into our Holy Ark/Aron Kodesh (a "bookshelf" with doors, in which the Torah scrolls are stored for reading during services) and stole several silver yads/pointers and decorative breastplates worth thousands of dollars.  (The chief Shabbos Goy/custodian, an employee of our shul for roughly two decades, must have had a heart attack when he unlocked the Ark doors and saw that the items were missing.)  The good news--the thief was caught on a security camera and was arrested before the Shabbat morning services had even ended, and the silver items were insured.  Still, it's pretty unnerving to know that our shul was ripped off, all the more so since the thief is someone whom the congregants know.
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