At first glance, one would not expect to find a connection between Charlemagne, the eighth-century King of the Franks and Holy Roman Emperor, and the humble apple. Though best known for his empire building — and indeed, during his long reign Charlemagne perhaps spent more time in the field of battle than among his French subjects — the welfare of his native France was always a special concern for the Emperor. Many of his ordinances have had a profound and lasting effect on the French people.
One day, millennia ago, next to a fire or hearth, someone found that their flatbread dough — a dough made daily, eaten at every meal — had gone bad. Dough that should have been firm was misshapen. It was puffy and elastic. It would have smelled of something unfamiliar, and, to an inexperienced nose, probably unpleasant. Most likely, they tossed it to the birds or dogs, and started anew. But this “off” dough, had it been baked, would have been one of the first leavened breads.
There is plenty of commentary to be offered on the obsessive response of America’s media to the death of Michael Jackson. You have to hand it to Congressman Peter King, who, albeit it in a very undiplomatic way, expressed what many are feeling. At the very least, Michael Jackson was an accused pedophile, a bizarre caricature of a self-loathing Black man whose hatred of his own skin and features led him to multiple acts of self-mutilation, a serious substance abuser, and, to put it generously, a very, very strange version of an adult. From whence all the adoration?
Thursday, November 6th, 2008
Ali Abunimah, editor of Electronic Intifada, is quite upset that Obama is pallin’ around with Rahm Israel Emanuel, the son of a so-called “terrorist” with Menachem Begin’s Irgun, back in the 1940s. Emanuel, of course, was Obama’s first appointment, as chief of staff.
From “Hussein” being the middle name we wondered about, Rahm’s middle name — Israel — now has every Haman in the Arab world wondering how the son of an Irgun guy is Obama’s new Mordechai.
Sunday, June 1st, 2008
Not that long ago, we were talking with Sherwood Goffin (see story here), the wonderful chazzan at Lincoln Square Synagogue, about the problem of amateurs who, when leading services, freely staple niggunim (spiritual melodies), or beautiful popular Israeli songs, such as Erev Shel Shoshanim, or even Puff The Magic Dragon, to verses of the davening without any regard to how appropriate the particular tune might be to the verse.
The King David, flagship hotel of the Dan Hotels Corporation, has been recognized by Fodor’s Travel, the foremost name in travel publishing, as a 2009 Fodor’s Choice selection. It is the only Israeli hotel to be chosen by Fodor, for service, quality, and value in 2009.