Connecticut Sen. Joseph Lieberman, who will not seek a fifth term in 2012, hasn’t announced his future plans. But as a prolific author and prominent observant Jew, Lieberman, 69, says he wants to do “a little bit of missionary work,” promoting Sabbath observance as a divine gift and lifting the mystique about what an observant Jew can and cannot do within the confines of the day of rest. Simon & Schuster will publish “The Gift of Rest: Rediscovering the Beauty of the Sabbath,” written by Lieberman and David Klinghoffer in August.
The Holocaust, whose memory usually serves as an honored shared point for the Jewish community, sometimes is a point of contention for haredi Jews, who say they feel excluded from mainstream histories of the period. Those histories, and exhibits in Yad Vashem, emphasize the exploits of secular partisans and pay less attention to religious Jews who resisted the Nazis by studying Torah in ghettoes and keeping the commandments in death camps.
Jews around the tri-state area will clear store shelves of kosher-for-Passover goods over the next week — if there are any still left. From matzah to macaroons, supermarkets are offering a wide array of goods for the weeklong holiday, which is why A&P Supermarkets — and its banner stores Pathmark, Waldbaum’s and Food Emporium — are eager to reach this market. To that end they recently hired Barry Eizik to fill a newly created role as kosher category manager, and work to expand and improve the chain’s kosher offerings.
With intermarriage increasingly pervasive and accepted in American Jewish life, it should be no surprise that the No. 1 best-selling Haggadah on Amazon.com right now is Cokie and Steve Roberts’ “Our Haggadah: Uniting Traditions for Interfaith Families.” The user-friendly book incorporates all the standard elements of the Haggadah, along with additional readings, explanations and recipes.
John Thorn had a busy month in March. His latest book, “Baseball in the Garden of Eden: The Secret History of the Early Game” (Simon and Schuster) was published, and he was named official historian of Major League Baseball. Which is not bad for a nice Jewish boy who was born in a displaced persons camp in Stuttgart, Germany. Thorn, who will turn 64 shortly after this week’s Opening Day, offered some insights into baseball and the Jewish-American experience in a telephone interview last week.