Monday, September 29, 2008

Shana Tova

29 Elul, 5768

May you all be written and sealed for a good year!

- Cosmic X in Jerusalem

Sunday, September 28, 2008

The Porush Campaign

28 Elul, 5768

I try to be positive. I like to write about positive things, to see the "good of Jerusalem" (Psalms 128:5). Unfortunately I don't always succeed, especially if I write about politics. Today I have the pleasure of writing a positive post about something political.

Meir Porush is one of the candidates in Jerusalem's mayoral race. The Porush campaign is ingenious. Take a look at the advertisement on this bus:

It says, "Jerusalem will love Porush". In the circle it says "from experience". So what's so ingenious? Take a look at the picture of Porush. They made him into a comic book character! That is ingenious! Most candidates post their photos all over the place. The people at the Porush campaign realized that a photo of a Chasidic Jew with a long beard may turn off certain voters, and that's an understatement. Lopolianski, Jeruslaem's outgoing ultra-Orthodox mayor, had a short, well trimmed beard gave him a less "threatening" appearance than Porush. Porush's advertising agency apparently realized this, so they turned Porush into a cuddly cartoon character. Isn't he just adorable?

HH #184

28 Elul, 5768

Hear them yawp!

Friday, September 26, 2008

I'm Behind This Jew

26 Elul, 5768

I went to due my pre-Shabbat shopping at the Giv'at Sha'ul branch of Yesh this morning but I couldn't find parking. I decided to try something new. Earlier this morning my wife had mentioned that there is a supermarket called Sha'arei Ezra at 9 Yirmiyahu St. I decided that perhaps this is a sign from Heaven: I can't find parking where I usually shop and this very morning my wife suggested an alternative.

Finding the place wasn't difficult. I even found parking close to the entrance. Most of the customers looked the picture I posted here. I heard Yiddish flying around all over the place!

After filling my shopping cart with what was on my shopping list I headed for the checkout counter. Unfortunately the lines were long and it was hard to distinguish between the different lines. After examining the various lines, I chose one which I thought would be the quickest. Murphy's Law was in action as I saw the lines on both sides of me progressing much quicker.

In the meantime more people finished their shopping and lined up after me. Someone asked the lady behind me which line she was standing on. She gestured towards me and said, "Ani Acharei HaYehudi HaZeh (I'm behind this Jew)."

Now when a Jew in Jerusalem (or anywhere else in Israel for that matter) calls someone else a Jew it is a term of endearment. When I heard the lady say, "Ani Acharei HaYehudi HaZeh" I immediately thought of the following scenario: I'm in New Jersey waiting to pay at the supermarket and the guy behind me says, "I'm behind this Jew." A big smile crossed my face.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

That Rabbi Drove Me Crazy!

25 Elul, 5768

I recently read an interesting story in Hebrew. I've translated it for the English speaking world. The message is universal:
He is really controversial, this rabbi. On the one hand - it cannot be denied - he knows everything! Okay, perhaps I exagerated a little... but anything that you ask him - he has an answer, a source, or a nice idea to add. Tell him the beginning of a verse - and immediately you will receive the continuation. A midrash, and you will receive three other related ones. He is well versed in Talmud and early rabbinic authorities, Jewish Law and homilies. Chasidim and their opponents, early and later authorities - he knows how to quote them all quickly and with great precision.

But there is also the other hand...

Just as he is erudite in Torah, so is he in secular matters. Even worse, holiness and impurity dwell together by him. Once I asked him, "Where are there sources on 'kos shel brachah'?" - and suddenly he thought of all kinds of dirty and strange associations that I am not able even to repeat them. Once I asked him about bananas and he answered me caustically, with words that I had never heard in Yeshiva.

The first time this happened I was frightened. I literally fled from him back to the Beit Midrash.

The second time - I was surprised, I didn't continue the conversation, but my curiosity of his strange personality grew.

The third time that he answered me in this fashion, I couldn't control myself and I continued the conversation. "What is it exactly that you said?" I asked, and I requested to delve into the depths of the matter - and he told me things that I had never heard...I asked him a question regarding Jewish Law, and I received an entire lesson on "sexual education"...even pictures weren't lacking... and even short films... I departed confused, and that entire evening I wasn't able to learn properly in the Yeshiva.

And despite this - I returned to ask him another question. And another one. And sometimes after the evening learning session in Yeshiva - another one. To be honest I don't know how to get out of this...

He drove me crazy, that Rabbi Google.

(Translated from Mayanei Hayeshua vol. 365)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Mitzpe Hoshaya and Tzipori

23 Elul, 5768

Do you see those red roofed houses nestled so nicely on the hill? That's Mitzpe Hoshaya, a religious community in the Galilee. Nice, isn't it? Happiness is the rebuilding of the land of Israel (See Or HaChaim on Deuteronomy 26:1).

I took the picture from the ruins of Tzipori. Tzipori was an important town in the land of Israel after the destruction of the Second Temple. The Sanhedrin, the High Court of Jewish Law, was here for a while. Many remains from the Mishnaic era have been found here. For me the most impressive find was the ancient synagogue of Tzipori. It has a mosaic floor with several different motifs:

Could you make out the seven branched Menorah? The Rambam holds that the branches of Menorah were straight and not curved. In every ancient depiction of the Menorah that I seen here in Israel the branches are curved. Of course this has no bearing on deciding halacha.

I don't know if I will be posting again before the New Year. There are so many preparations to be made.

May you all be written and sealed in the Book of Life. In 5769 may we rejoice in the rebuilding of the land of Israel and the banishing of God's enemies from it. Amen.

Sunday, September 21, 2008


21 Elul, 5768


by Cosmic X

Take a good look, here's a couple of Jews,
No doubt they are in the middle of a schmooze,
Talking about the Torah, its don'ts and its do's,
The latest pashkvil or what they heard on the news.

Nu, gib a kik, here's a couple of Jews,
They wear dark clothes and chapeaux of various hues,
Sometimes white stockings stick out of their shoes,
It's a free country and they dress as they choose.

In the middle of davenning they enter in twos,
One sticks out his hand, "Tzedaka" he coos,
Startled I muse, this isn't a ruse,
And it's really not nice for me to refuse.

Nebbech, some people don't like Jews,
Hebrews give them a case of the blues,
Or they blow a fuse, their mind they lose,
Poor things, they're missing a few screws.

Now that you've read my poem about Jews,
You probably want to send me catcalls and boos,
But I'm a Jew and I've paid my dues,
So I'll just go and take a snooze.

HH #183

Jack's got it!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Shabbat Shalom

19th Elul, 5768

Here's a pic that I took a few days ago when I was in the Old City:

Ashkenazim: Don't forget selichot Satuday night!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Elul Thoughts #7: The Secret of Happiness

18th Elul, 5768

Berl is the man who has everything. He has a nice wife and wonderful children. He is well respected at work and he provides well for his family. He has plenty of time to devote to his various interests. Nothing is lacking.

However a deep look into Berl's eyes reveals a tinge of sadness. What's wrong? What could be bothering the man who has everything?

A lot of things are bothering Berl. When it comes to food Berl is a connoisseur. Unfortunately his wife Mindy isn't such a good cook. She's lucky if she can cook za'atar eggs without burning them. On the other hand, Shirley, the wife of his best friend Shmerl, cooks up a storm. How could it be that Berl who is so particular about what he eats could end up with such a klutz in the kitchen?

But that is not all. Although Berl has a good job, his friend and colleague Shmerl was recently promoted instead of him. Berl doesn't understand why he was passed up for the promotion. He's been in the company a year longer than Shmerl!

Berl doesn't always have nachas from his children. They don't always listen to him. Sometimes they are downright insolent! Chutzpah! Shmerl's children seem to honor their father so much! They obey his every word like soldiers!

Berl is jealous and that jealousy is eating away at him. King Solomon said, "A tranquil heart is the life of the flesh; but envy is the rottenness of the bones (Proverbs 14:30)." Berl is the embodiment of this verse. Jealousy is a terrible character trait: Rabbi Eliezer HaKapar says, "Jealousy, desire, and honor take a man out of the world (Avot ch. 4)."

Berl has to change the way he views the world. Instead of pouting about what he lacks, he should be happy with what he has. Instead of looking at others, he should count his blessings. Baruch Hashem, I have a wife! Thank God I have children! What a blessing! Not everybody merits this! The same goes for all of the other issues that Berl is brooding on. "Who is rich? He that is happy with his portion, as it says, 'When thou eatest the labour of thy hands, happy shalt thou be, and it shall be well with thee.'(Avot 4:1)"


I think that this is especially true at this time of year when we reflect on what we are lacking spiritually. One can become depressed when he thinks of all the things that he has done wrong: the sins, the bad character traits, etc. Regretting our bad deeds is an important part of teshuvah. Happy is he that takes an honest look in the spiritual mirror, regrets his sins, confesses them and changes his behavior for the better!

However one must be careful not to develop a distorted picture of oneself. Our soul searching should also include a look at all of the good we did! This is not in order to lay back on our laurels, God forbid. A look at our good deeds helps give us a positive self image in order to continue such deeds, and to increase them in quality and quantity!

We must serve God in happiness (Deuteronomy 28:47, Psalms 100:2). That includes teshuvah.

Cosmic X at Beyond Teshuva

18th Elul, 5768

The Beyond Teshuva blog has published an old post of mine, "The Selichot Experience In The Eyes Of A Ba’al Teshuvah". Check it out and join the discussion.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008


17th Elul, 5768


by Cosmic X

Greetings, pleased to meet you, hello,
I want to write about the color yellow,
You probably suppose that I'm a foolish fellow,
To pen a poem about potent yellow.

I'll grab my guitar and you catch your cello,
And maybe we'll melodize something mellow,
A song about sunflowers, corn on the cob, or lemon jello,
Bananas and dandelions of incandescent yellow.

I'll raise my voice and sing a solo,
I'll sing loud and even bellow,
It's true I am a foolish fellow,
To yip and yap and yack away about yellow.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Elul Thoughts #6: Two Paths in Front of Us

One of the great things about digital cameras is that you don't have to worry about wasting film. Yesterday, around sunset, I was taking a walk with my youngest son. I had my camera with me and he told me to take a picture of this traffic light. If I had a regular camera I probably would have tried to convince him that there is no reason to take a picture of a traffic light, that it is a waste of film. However with my digital camera I was more than happy to make my son happy and snap away.

Afterwards, when I uploaded the picture to my computer, it reminded me of the what the Gemara tells us in the tractate of Berachot (28B). Rabbi Yochanan Ben Zakai's sun is about to set, and he stops to reflect on the two ways that are before him:

וכשחלה רבי יוחנן בן זכאי נכנסו תלמידיו לבקרו כיון שראה אותם התחיל לבכות אמרו לו תלמידיו נר ישראל עמוד הימיני פטיש החזק מפני מה אתה בוכה אמר להם אילו לפני מלך בשר ודם היו מוליכין אותי שהיום כאן ומחר בקבר שאם כועס עלי אין כעסו כעס עולם ואם אוסרני אין איסורו איסור עולם ואם ממיתני אין מיתתו מיתת עולם ואני יכול לפייסו בדברים ולשחדו בממון אעפ"כ הייתי בוכה ועכשיו שמוליכים אותי לפני ממ"ה הקב"ה שהוא חי וקיים לעולם ולעולמי עולמים שאם כועס עלי כעסו כעס עולם ואם אוסרני איסורו איסור עולם ואם ממיתני מיתתו מיתת עולם ואיני יכול לפייסו בדברים ולא לשחדו בממון ולא עוד אלא שיש לפני שני דרכים אחת של גן עדן ואחת של גיהנם ואיני יודע באיזו מוליכים אותי ולא אבכה אמרו לו רבינו ברכנו אמר להם יהי רצון שתהא מורא שמים עליכם כמורא בשר ודם אמרו לו תלמידיו עד כאן אמר להם ולואי תדעו כשאדם עובר עבירה אומר שלא יראני אדם. בשעת פטירתו אמר להם פנו כלים מפני הטומאה והכינו כסא לחזקיהו מלך יהודה שבא

When Rebbi Yochanan ben Zakkai became sick, his students came to visit him. When he saw them enter, he began to cry. "Rebbi, the light of Yisroel, the right pillar, the strong hammer," said his students, "why do you cry?" Answered Rebbi Yochanan, " If I would have to appear in front of an ordinary King who rules only temporarily and whose anger is not lasting and whose death penalty is only of short duration, wouldn't I be terrified? Now that I must come before the King of Kings, Whose rule is eternal and Whose anger is eternal and Whose punishment of death remains everlasting, should I not be frightened?"" Furthermore," he said "there are two paths in front of me, one leads to Gan Eden while the other leads to Gehenom, and one can never be sure on which path he will be led, shouldn't I therefore cry?"

Thereupon they said to him "Rebbi, please bless us". He thereupon told them "If only your fear of heaven be equal to your fear of man". "And not more?" they asked. "When a person sins he is always afraid lest a person see him," was his reply. "If only you realize that HaShem is always watching."

As he was about to return his neshomah to the One Above he told his students. "Empty the house of any objects that can become tomei and prepare a chair for Chizkiyahu King of Yehudah who is coming to greet me".

Elul Thoughts #5: The Hebrew Calendar

As we approach the New Year 5769, it is fitting to discuss our calendar. The Hebrew calendar is cool when you think about it. The months of the Hebrew calendar are real lunar months. Months really should have something to do with the moon shouldn't they? Isn't it cooler to count the years from the Creation and not from the birth of you know who? Think about it!

Here in Israel you can write the Hebrew date on checks. Sometimes I do, and sometimes I don't. Perhaps that will be one of my New Year's resolutions: to use the Hebrew date as much as possible, to be as conscious of the Hebrew date as much as possible. Today is the 16th of Elul, 5768! A Simple Jew has got the idea. My children were born here in Israel have almost no knowledge of the Gregorian calendar. Sometimes they will ask me questions like, "When is March?" I answer them and say that March is around the time of Adar.

A guy I know in Jerusalem is very strict about using only the Hebrew date. This calendar is his handiwork:

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Something is Rotten Over at

Click here for details.

Elul Thoughts #4

This is the time of year when I remember a very remarkable person, someone who unfortunately is not with us anymore. I was told that he was learning "Shmiras HaLoshon" with one of his children, when his soul, without prior warning, departed from him, and he fell from his chair. The person's name was Menachem "Kenny" Herman.

It was a few years back as I was preparing for the Seudah HaMafseket, the final meal before the Yom Kippur fast, I received a telephone call. On the other end of the line a mutual friend, who was clearly upset. In tears, he told me the bad news: Menachem was niftar!

I was shocked. How could somebody, who was so full of life, die so young? How could God take away such a tzaddik, someone who did so much for so many? "For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, saith the LORD (Isaiah 55:8)." I cannot be God's accountant. What's more, He doesn't need one. It's His world and He manages it as He sees fit.

I got to know Menachem in the early 1980s, when we both learned at Rutgers College in New Brunswick, N.J. The college was about 30% Jewish at the time, but you wouldn't know that from strolling down College Avenue. Most of the Jews learning there were busy melting in the Melting Pot. Very few were involved in anything Jewish, whether it be the Hillel inconveniently located on the edge of Cook Campus or the Chabad House which then was still in its diapers. A Jewish student wearing a yarmulke was a very rare sight back then.

"Kenny" was weird in my eyes. This guy was walking around campus with a kippah on his head and tzitzit (fringes) dangling from his shirt. "Excuse me, are you Jewish?" he would ask anyone that he suspected was from the tribe. If the reply was yes immediately came the follow-up question: "Perhaps you would like to spend a Shabbos meal with a family in Highland Park? What's your phone number? Just let me know and I will arrange it for you."

As I mentioned most of the Jews on campus were firmly on the road to assimilation. Some Jews, when confronted with Kenny's "Excuse me, are you Jewish?", would lie and say no. For them Kenny was somewhat of a nuisance. He however knew where they were coming from. He himself had grown up in suburban New Jersey of the 1960s and 1970s, very full of "Temples" but very much lacking in Yiddishkeit. "Kenny" however, had found "the derech". After taking a year off to learn in a Yeshiva in Israel he returned to campus determined to bring as many Jews as he could closer to their Father in Heaven. I personally owe him a lot for not giving up on me. In the end he dragged me into the Chabad House. (Although I didn't become a Chabadnik, I owe Chabad a lot as well.) Who knows how many people this "weird" guy saved from assimilation?

After college we both worked in Newark, N.J. Menachem would use his lunch hour on Friday to visit the few Jewish patients that were sick in local hospital, to wish them a "Sei Gesund" and a "Gut Shabbos". That's just an example of how he would spend his time to help and bring cheer to others.

After working for a while his love of Torah overwhelmed him and he decided to devote himself purely to learning. He went to Monsey, N.Y. where he learned in the "Kol Yaakov" yeshiva. We kept in touch. Sometimes he would spend a Shabbat in my apartment. Sometimes I would visit him in the Yeshiva. Wherever he was there was happiness, song, learning, and most of all action. Menachem did not sit idly. "The day is short, and there is much work (to be done)... (Avot 2:18)" . Menachem ran from one mitzvah to the next.

Our ways parted when I made aliyah. I got married and built my home here in Jerusalem. He got married and built his home somewhere in Rockland County, N.Y. Unfortunately, we did not keep in touch. These were the days when trans-Atlantic calls were expensive, and when a letter sent from Israel arrived in America two weeks later. I heard that he learned a lot of Torah, and ascended the levels of chassidus. Did he know how short his day really was? Does anyone?

This post does not due justice to that very special Jew, Menachem "Kenny" Herman. It's a drop in the bucket, based on old but fond memories. These memories of this tremendous Ba'al Teshuvah come to my mind during this period of Teshuvah. May his memory be a blessing.

HH #182

Batya is back in the saddle. Check it out!

Friday, September 12, 2008

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Remembering 9-11

September 11, 2001, as President Roosevelt said regarding a different date, is "a date which will live in infamy." Indeed, September 11, 2001 was a day when the evil of Arab Terrorism became clear to the entire world.

Listen to President Bush's speech:

A gem from the speech:
The search is underway for those who are behind these evil acts. I've directed the full resources of our intelligence and law enforcement communities to find those responsible and to bring them to justice. We will make no distinction between the terrorists who committed these acts and those who harbor them.

Here President Bush quotes King David:
America and our friends and allies join with all those who want peace and security in the world, and we stand together to win the war against terrorism. Tonight, I ask for your prayers for all those who grieve, for the children whose worlds have been shattered, for all whose sense of safety and security has been threatened. And I pray they will be comforted by a power greater than any of us, spoken through the ages in Psalm 23: "Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me."

More from the jblogosphere:

Seven years ago

Welles Remy Crowther, age 24

9/11 News Roundup from Israel

September 11- The Memories Continue

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

I Have a Dream

I mentioned the famous "I have a Dream" speech in a previous post, in a not so serious way. The truth is that we are talking about a very serious speech. There is a lot to be learned from this speech. It is not only what Martin Luther King said, it is the way he said it. Take 17 and a half minutes of your time to listen to this historic speech:

Monday, September 08, 2008

Everything You Wanted to Know About Hitchhiking in Israel


Elul Thoughts #3

There sure is a lot to do in order to prepare for Rosh HaShannah. Two days of Rosh HaShannah means four holiday meals. That in itself means that there is a lot of shopping to be done. I can see it now. Jews in Jersey, Jews in Jerusalem, filling the shopping cart with delicacies. Of course this means that there is a lot of work to be done in the kitchen. I can smell the sweet aroma of chicken being cooked in wine, pineapple and honey now! Then there are those that are invited to eat elsewhere, to spend the holiday with good friends or close relatives. The change in scenery is in itself invigorating, a mechaye. The women of the family certainly want to greet the High Holy Days with some new clothes to say "shechechiyanu" on. It's time to pull out the credit card! Of course one must prepare good divrei Torah, the kind that will be interesting to children as well adults. We certainly have enough tasks to keep us busy.

I know of one Jew who will be spending the holiday alone. No one has invited him to spend the holiday with him. New clothes? No way! As for delicacies, I am not even sure that he has kosher food to eat. He's going to be spending the holiday locked up in a United States prison, just as he as done for over twenty years. The reason he is still in jail for the crime he committed is because he is a Jew.

Please forgive me, Jonathan Pollard. Forgive me for not doing enough for you. Please forgive the various Israeli governments for doing next to nothing to to get you out of jail, in spite of the great service that you did for them. Please forgive the Jews of the United States of America. You are their biggest nightmare. The mention of your name instills fear in their hearts, fear of the demon of the accusation of dual loyalty. This demon hovers above them as they sit in their comfortable US Government jobs and chat with their gentile colleagues about politics, sports, and the latest sitcom. The demon haunts them in their medical and law practices. He scratches them under the white collar and under the blue collar. When they mow their lawn, when they go the shopping mall, the demon is with them. They will do nothing for you for they dread the demon.

May this be the year that the demon is slain! May this be the year that Jonathan is set free, that his great stain of injustice will be removed from America once and for all. Amen, Kein Yehi Ratzon!

Update: Dry Bones has his say.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Elul Thoughts #2

Get ready, it's coming!:
1 And it shall come to pass, when all these things are come upon thee, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before thee, and thou shalt bethink thyself among all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath driven thee, 2 and shalt return unto the LORD thy God, and hearken to His voice according to all that I command thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thy heart, and with all thy soul; 3 that then the LORD thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the peoples, whither the LORD thy God hath scattered thee. 4 If any of thine that are dispersed be in the uttermost parts of heaven, from thence will the LORD thy God gather thee, and from thence will He fetch thee. 5 And the LORD thy God will bring thee into the land which thy fathers possessed, and thou shalt possess it; and He will do thee good, and multiply thee above thy fathers. 6 And the LORD thy God will circumcise thy heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the LORD thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, that thou mayest live. 7 And the LORD thy God will put all these curses upon thine enemies, and on them that hate thee, that persecuted thee. 8 And thou shalt return and hearken to the voice of the LORD, and do all His commandments which I command thee this day. 9 And the LORD thy God will make thee over-abundant in all the work of thy hand, in the fruit of thy body, and in the fruit of thy cattle, and in the fruit of thy land, for good; for the LORD will again rejoice over thee for good, as He rejoiced over thy fathers; 10 if thou shalt hearken to the voice of the LORD thy God, to keep His commandments and His statutes which are written in this book of the law; if thou turn unto the LORD thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul.

HH #181

Did you see HH #181? I did!

Friday, September 05, 2008

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Elul Thoughts #1

I thought that I would share with you all some Elul related thoughts. These are things that I think about, and I thought that others may also benefit from my contemplations:

The spiritual uplift that I will receive from the High Holidays is dependent on how much I invest in preparing for them. When I hear the sound of the shofar, it is, as the Rambam explains, a wake up call to return to God(Laws of Teshuvah ch. 3).

The trials and tribulations of life often prevent me from examining my ways. There is no time! I am too busy! However, I must find the time for introspection. Where am I, and where was I last year at this time? Where do I stand in regard to the commandments that guide the interaction between myself and my fellow man? Have I been good to my wife and my children. Is my behavior in monetary matters up to Torah standards? Have I done anything to help Klal Yisrael? How am I doing in terms of fulfilling the other precepts of Torah? I must examine my behavior! I have to make an accounting of what I have done from the time I get up in the morning until I go to sleep.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Cosmic X in The Jewish Press!

Did any of you out there read The Jewish Press? When I lived in the States I had a subscription to the Jewish Press. This newspaper was an important part of my transformation from a frat boy to a frum Yid. I learned a lot about the American Orthodox Jewish community through the pages of the Jewish Press. I never thought that one of my photos would be published there.

For whatever reason, someone over at The Jewish Press decided that they wanted to publish my photo of blogger Bibi. They kindly asked permission which I granted as long as they gave me credit. So if you pick up the latest issue of The Jewish Press you can see my photo of Binyamin Netanyahu at the jblogger conference. Under the photo it says "Photo by the blog Cosmic X in Jerusalem ". Stephen Leavitt of WebAds was kind enough to send me a scan of the article.(Click on pic for an enlargement.)

I was wondering what Jews in Borough Park think when they see the credit "Photo by the blog Cosmic X in Jerusalem". I imagined the following dialogue:

Berl: Shmerl, Gib a Kik, there's a picture of Binyomin Nesanyohu in The Jewish Press.

Shmerl: Vus?

Berl: I said that there's a picture of Binyomin Nesanyohu in The Jewish Press.

Shmerl: Nu, why didn't you say Binyomin Nesanyohu? A real mensch, a groyse Kiddush Hashem that Binyomin Nesanyahu. I'll never forget what he did for the Yidden in that were captured by the Resho'im in Entebbe. May his memory be a blessing...

Berl: Shmerl, you are thinking of his brother Yoni. Binyomin used to be Israel's ambassador to the UN. Later he became Prime Minister.

Shmerl: What can I do? Shmerl is an getting old, and his memory isn't what it used to be. That's why we say in slichos "Al tashlicheini Le'eis Ziknoh".

Berl: It says that the photo is from the Cosmic X in Jerusalem blog. Who in the world is Cosmic X?

Shmerl: You don't know who Cosmic X is? Mr. know-it-all doesn't know who Cosmic X is? Don't you remember all of the race riots in the 1960s? I'll never forgive the vilde chayes for looting Uncle Hirsch's shoe store in Newark! A real trouble maker, that Cosmic X! Tell me, what does looting a poor Yid's shoe store have to do with civil rights? I liked Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. better. He was non-violent. He had that great speech, "I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character."

Now that's my kind of shvartze!

Berl: Yaw. Too bad he got assassinated. Nebech. But I think that you are thinking of Malcolm X, and I don't think that he was responsible for the looting of Uncle Harry's shoe store.

Shmerl: Nu, so Malcolm had a brother called Cosmic. A strange world that we live in: Malcolm X's brother is in Jerusalem, and I'm stuck in the golus in Borough Park. By the way, what's a blog?

Berl: Ich veiss? You think that I have to know everything?! Enough shmusing! Pass the chopped liver, I'm hungry.

JPix is back!

Check it out!

Cosmic X in the New York Times!

I checked out my stats and saw that someone came from here(Click on the pic to enlarge):

I know, this isn't exactly the front page.

I predicted that I would make the Times one day! ;)
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