Monday, February 28, 2022

War and wages: An accountant's comment on the war in Ukraine calls a prophet to mind

"Wait until the Russian troops in Ukraine realize that the ruble is now worth nothing and they're not going to get paid."

The minute my husband said that, I knew I'd heard something very much like it in one of the dozen or so haftarot that I chant every year.  So I started checking from the first one.  Noach?  Nope.  Shabbat Chanukah I (which is also Haftarat B'haalot'cha)?  Not.  Vaera? That's the one.

Copied from Sefaria--Ezekiel 29:18

בֶּן־אָדָ֗ם נְבוּכַדְרֶאצַּ֣ר מֶֽלֶךְ־בָּ֠בֶ֠ל הֶעֱבִ֨יד אֶת־חֵיל֜וֹ עֲבֹדָ֤ה גְדוֹלָה֙ אֶל־צֹ֔ר כׇּל־רֹ֣אשׁ מֻקְרָ֔ח וְכׇל־כָּתֵ֖ף מְרוּטָ֑ה וְ֠שָׂכָ֠ר לֹא־הָ֨יָה ל֤וֹ וּלְחֵילוֹ֙ מִצֹּ֔ר עַל־הָעֲבֹדָ֖ה אֲשֶׁר־עָבַ֥ד עָלֶֽיהָ׃ {ס}         O mortal, King Nebuchadrezzar of Babylon has made his army expend vast labor on Tyre; every head is rubbed bald and every shoulder scraped. But he and his army have had no return for the labor he expended on Tyre.  

Ukrainians are suffering, and the Russian people will also pay a price while their dictator plays warlord using Russian citizens to do his dirty work.  😢

Thursday, February 24, 2022

Minor details, major invasion 😡

Vladimir Putin, president of Russia, really doesn't care about such minor matters (quoth she sarcastically) as a global climate crisis and a worldwide pandemic--he's happy to finish the work that Mother Nature started and kill off half the population of Europe by launching an invasion against Ukraine and possibly starting World War III. G-d help the people of Ukraine. 😢
Update:  Over 1,400 Russians have been arrested for protesting this invasion.

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Shout-out to Songleader Boot Camp SLBC #slbc22 (Songleader Boot Camp (SLBC Group)

Here's a shout-out to Shout-out to Songleader Boot Camp SLBC #slbc22 (Songleader Boot Camp (SLBC Group)!
I had a wonderful few days at the SLBC Tefillah and Shira Kallah, studying liturgy (what's in the prayerbook) + prayer (what's in your heart) = tefillah with Eliana Light and Rabbi Josh Warshawsky, two outstanding teachers. I love deep dives into the siddur (prayer-book)! A highlight: Ej Cohen, American Sign Language interpreter extraordinaire, explaining how she strives to interpret not only the words of a song, but to communicate the melody visually, as well. Wow! Another highlight: Rabbi Sam Blustin talking about how the words "vahasheivota el l'vavecha" ("take to heart," according to the R. Jonathan Sacks translation) in the Aleinu prayer are a reminder to him that his goal is to help his congregants leave with their hearts full of G!d and G!d's teachings. (Hope I got that right.)
I was happy to see Beth Hamon, whom I met in a break-out room at SLBC 2021, and Rosalie Will, who we first heard speak on one of the Light Lab podcasts (see below). Beth, hope you feel better soon, and Rosalie, thanks for your advice.
It was fun seeing my buddies from an old Zoom program that's no longer running called Music, Silence, Love, from the early days of the COVID pandemic. Hello to Judy Ariel Thomas, Ann Tabor Gottesman, and Samantha Thal (and anyone else from that crew whom I might have missed), not to mention the dynamic duo who generously presented MSL, Chava Mirel and Eliana Light!
It was also cool to witness a live recording of The Light Lab podcast ( What a rare treat!
It's been really neat, being at SLBC for the past two years. But I don't know whether I'll be attending when the program goes back to being in-person. Logistically and fiscally, it makes more sense for me to attend the Rising Song Intensive (presented by Hadar's Rising Song Institute) because it takes place in New York City, which means that we can get there by subway and sleep at home.
That said, mazal tov to Rick Recht and Elisa Heiligman-Recht and all of the fine folks who make SLBC happen on the occasion of SLBC's BMitzvah year! Thanks for all you do to support Jewish music and education!

Saturday, February 05, 2022

A pronunciation error can make angels disappear

Can you see the problem?

"Shalom aleichem mal'chei hasharet

mal'chei elyon

mimelech mal'chei ham'lachim

hakodesh baruch hu"


"Mal'chei" means "sovereign of," and it's being used in the first three lines above.  But "Shalom Aleichem" is supposed to be a song about the angels that are traditionally said to visit Jewish homes on Erev Shabbat (Sabbath Eve).  Where did the angels go?

The problem is this:  The first two lines are not spelled "mal'chei" in the siddur (prayer-book)--they're spelled "mal'*a*chei, which means "angels of."  So yes, being careful to pronounce properly does make a difference, which is why I try to be careful and to avoid praying from memory when I'm leading or co-leading a service.

Retired Production Editor (with a B.A. in French) at your service--I used to get paid to spot errors such as this one.  :)

<< List
Jewish Bloggers
Join >>