Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Of Blogs and Books

Introducing a new J-blog by my friend, fan, and frequent commenter, Judah

Sarah Smile explains where babies come from.

David calls for donations of disposable coffee carriers so he can bring hot drinks to the soldiers at isolated checkpoints.

Lisa’s description of the Rosh Hashanah goings-on over in Tel Aviv just show how different Israel's two largest cities are. From where I stood in Jerusalem, everything was so quiet you could hear a pin drop on the street, because everyone was either in a synagogue or at home, eating. I must admit, though, that I can speak only for my own neighborhood – and that for all I know there were areas in Tel Aviv that were similarly serene. Still, it’s an indication of why I find it hard to believe that one tiny country can have two cities that are as dissimilar as J-lem and TA. The whole thing never fails to amuse and trouble me (both feelings simultaneously, and on many levels). I’m glad to know that Lisa had a nice holiday, though. Shana tova, Lisa!

Don't forget to vote for the Watership Down character with whom you most identify.

You have read Watership Down, haven't you? Come on! Next you'll be telling me that you've never read A Separate Peace, or The Moonstone, or The Chosen (FYI some of my Latino students in the Bronx read The Chosen for my class - they picked it from a list I provided- and they adored it. One girl told me that parts of it made her cry. So it really is a univerally-appreciated novel, not just a Jewish thing.) These were all books I chose for summer reading in high school and never forgot. (Each summer we were given a list of about 20 books and had to choose 3 or 4 from the list -- a very good system-- much better than forcing everyone to read the same books, and certainly better than what usually happens during the school year: Everyone reading the same book at the same pace. As a former high school student and a former high school English teacher, I say that the surest way to kill a book is to teach it in school . . . Sigh.)

And please don't tell me that you've never read any of the mysteries by Agatha Christie, particularly Murder on the Orient Express and And Then There Were None. No? Get thee to a library or bookstore, my poor, deprived reader.

And now I'm off to work on my last four articles for the week, before rejoining the world of freelance journalists. Onward and upward!

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