Binchy, an Irish novelist whose work focused on women's lives and friendships, died Monday at age 72. Her book, "A Circle of Friends," was made into a movie starring Minnie Driver and the ferociously talented Alan Cumming, now starring as ethically suspect Chicago lawyer Eli Gold on "The Good Wife."
I just got back from Israel. I went as a kind of pre-state pilgrim, but the circumstances and the trappings of the trip were hardly old-fashioned, or pious. My ever-generous in-laws wanted to show off their grandchildren at a wedding thrown by olim relatives, so the grandchildren’s parents got to come along.
Once upon a time – about seven months ago – in a land far, far away (Sweden), where there aren’t many Jews, the government decided for PR purposes to give a different citizen control over its Twitter account every week, the only real requirement being that the Twitterer tweet in English.
The idea was that the tweets would naturally broadcast the essence of Sweden as it conceives of itself: open, creative, progressive, eclectic.
It’s easy to venerate our prophets, harder to relate to them. They were noble, and they were also cranky, dirty and solitary; strange things to be in our scrubbed, relentlessly social world. This seeming eccentricity gives us reason, if we want it, to avoid their message. Let’s be honest, who doesn’t want it? Even thinking about them too much, much less emulating them, is uncomfortable.