Monday, August 15, 2022


Ghostwriter Seeks to Tell Jewish Leaders’ Stories

By his own account, Michael Levin’s start in the ghostwriting business was not entirely auspicious or a sign of the success that lay ahead.

As he tells it in a narrative on his website: “I received my J.D. from Columbia Law School in 1985 and went to work as an attorney in Boston.


‘Rishus Cold Seltzer’: What’s Special About This Meme?

How a rabbi accidentally went viral in a two-minute Twitter video, and why his quotes continue to resurface.

The frum Twitter (jokingly, yet controversially, referred to in some circles as “fritter”) community is still preoccupied with “rishus”


An Unlikely Eyewitness—The Israelite Tower

The first time I was introduced to the Israelite Tower in the Old City I was amazed. I mean I always love the “wow” sensation I get when visiting a place for the first time, but this was super-special and moving. Here we were standing at a relatively small archeological site, but the significance of the place was enormous. I


Jackie Schlussel Goldberg: Ardent Zionist, True Realist

Jackie Schlussel Goldberg, 28, made aliyah from Edison, New Jersey in 2017. In Edison, she davened at Ohav Emeth and went to RPRY and Kushner for school. She lives in Tel Aviv with her husband, Zack.

Aviva: Tell me about a significant early trip to Israel.


Peculiar and Unusual Naming Customs Among Medieval Ashkenazi Jews

Why did these given names from medieval Ashkenazim and those from Anglia (England) fall out of favor among later Ashkenazim?



Yosi (as in the Galilean diminutive of the Hebrew name


American Unsung Heroes of the Shoah: Stephen Klein

Part VI

Before Stephen Klein Left Europe

Before Stephen Klein returned to the U.S., Rabbi Jacob Karlinsky, executive secretary of the Vaad in New York, asked Klein to secure the release of a 10- year-old Jewish girl being cared


Climbing Kilimanjaro

Part II

Summiting and Descent

A few hours later, we awoke about 11 p.m. and prepared to leave at midnight for the final climb to the summit. All the climbers of Barafu Camp were also rising to begin


Attending Nathan’s Famous Hotdog-Eating Contest

Ah, Independence Day! What a great day to celebrate with: fireworks, family-get-togethers, parades, and BBQs. What more can one ask for on this very patriotic day? For many Americans, especially those raised in Brooklyn, the answer is simple: Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest. The hot dog


Tanglewood: A Taste of Heaven

It’s said that Shabbat is a taste of paradise. It’s not that unusual to hear Hebrew spoken or chanted at Tanglewood in the Berkshires. Some welcome Shabbat with blessings over candles, wine and challah as a prelude to their festive picnic. Temple Anshe Emunah holds an annual Tanglewood Havdala service for its congregants and


A New-Old Look at Bialik, Berdichevsky and the Rest

Reviewing: “The Yeshiva and the Rise of Modern Hebrew Literature” by Marina Zilbergerts. Indiana University Press. 2022. Paperback. 184 pages. ISBN-13: 978-0253059437.

Conventional wisdom says that although most of the heroes of early Modern Hebrew literature


Science and Religion Take Center Stage In Books by Dr. Ephraim Chamiel

Reviewing: “Between Religion and Reason,” by Dr. Ephraim Chamiel. Academic Studies Press. Part 1: 2020. ISBN-10: 1644690721. Part 2: 2021. ISBN-10: 1644695707.

In 2004, several books by Rabbi Nosson Slifkin were banned as heretical by many very prominent rabbis. The


My Day in Court

So I finally got my day in court. Traffic court, to be precise.

My day in court was a Tuesday. The ticket I got actually said Shabbos, so I called to voice my concerns, and they said, “Actually, that’s not the court date. That’s just the deadline to schedule your court date.”

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