Quebec City, Canada:
Number 45 charges into the corner of the hockey rink, beating the other players to the loose puck. Number 45 glides up the ice, a step ahead of his line mates. Number 45 takes a pass in front of the net, deflecting the puck past the goalie.
The Quebec Remparts are not wearing numbers or names on their jerseys this morning, but the small numerals at the rear of his helmet, and his grace on skates, mark Benjamin Rubin as a natural.
Shawn Green has taken his place in the major leagues – of Jewish philanthropy. Last week the Mets right fielder announced he will donate $180 to UJA-Federation for every run he drives in.
This week UJA-Federation asked more people to step up to the plate. The philanthropy unveiled its RBI Initiative, encouraging people of various means to pledge amounts of their choosing to the annual campaign for every Green RBI.
Shortly after he moved here in 2001, Rome-born journalist Maurizio Molinari went shopping in a Manhattan supermarket where he found a wide variety of certified-kosher items. “It was not a Jewish store,” he notes.
Before Sukkot he noticed lulav-and-etrog sets being sold by vendors along West 72nd Street. No one seemed surprised, he says. “For the non-Jews, it was normal.”
One day he went to a Barnes & Noble bookstore. A “huge Judaica section” stood out. Most of the shoppers in the store, as he recalls, weren’t Jewish.