Monday, November 13, 2006


What a weekend. Let's just say I haven't gone on this little sleep or this long without a shower since I graduated YU. Which brings me back to the title. A few people have questioned the sanity of me putting so much personal information out in the public domain when it is so easily traceable back to my offline existence.

Yeah, that never bothered me. As riduculous as I often make myself sound in my writing, A) All the opinions I write are my actual thoughts, and B) all the stories, while possibly pathetic, are true. So like 'em or leave 'em, they're me.

But isn't it only a partial picture of who I am? Absolutely, I never said this was a documentary meant to capture my inner essence. While you'll get a flavor for me, you won't be able to put together the whole recipe. I leave out all of the boring stuff, all of the day-to-day parts of my life and even some out of the ordinary stuff that I just don't deem that interesting to the cross-section of my readers.

What if somebody is seriously using my blog to find out who I am? What if a girl I might date comes across it (it's happened more than once) or a possible employer? Well, hopefully, if I'd even remotely be a good fit, they'd A) have a sense of humor, and B) try and figure out the rest of the picture.

I'll let you in on a little secret (take this Anonymous satirical commentator) - I often omit details that would help clear up a situation, knowing that the ambiguity enhances the drama. So without Dan L'Kaf Zechus, you'll never catch on that I'm writing to entertain, not come across as the prince that I obviously am.

For example, this past weekend I saw an hysterical episone of Hogan Knows Best, you know that classic reality sitcom on VH-l using the deep experiential knowledge of the classical thinker Hulk "The Body" Hogan. Now I could've spent three quarters of the post explaining the context of how I came to be watching this fine film. Or I could just get to the point. I'm comfortable with my decisions, and have no qualms telling only the relevant part of the story. I leave the creative understanding of my complex persona(s) up to you...

Which brings me to the actual lesson from the Hulk. If you're ever invited to a party at a non-Jew's house, and he obviously has no background in Jewish custom, don't refuse to eat his food or shake his wife's hand without a gentle explanation and a warm thanks for his efforts to accomodate you. Because not only does it make you and your religion look stupid on national TV, but you don't want to mess with the Body.

And now you can try and figure out what a guy with a beard was doing watching VH-1, 'cause I'm not going to help you...

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Vote Jewish

I suppose a Rebbe could tell you who to vote for. Or you could read the newspaper and see which candidate supports Israel more. But I think either method shortchanges the democratic process.

I've had this argument before, but I don't believe that 300 million people are supposed to vote on their self-interest, and that somehow that will settle out to what is best for the majority. Every citizen is supposed to vote for what is best for the whole, and that diversity of approaches should aggregate to a "best choice," or the lesser of two evils.

So I don't understand how somebody can narrowly vote on "Jewish issues." Can you use Judaism as a moral/ethical basis to form your opinions of organized society? Sure. Can you use your experience as a religious minority to build a more open and tolerant society for all? Of course. You can even use a forceful anti-terror stance as a backbone for a foreign policy in defense of Israel.

But what I can't take are people that just count the dollars going to Israel, to Jewish schools, or back to themselves. The Israel issue is most troublesome, as we are using our citizenship in one country solely as a lever for supporting another country. But if we are too selfish in any one position, then we've simply turned democracy into a feuding state.

So go out and vote, but don't just look for a Jewish name.

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