A Rabbi's World

01/02/2014 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

With two of our four children home over the December holiday break, my wife and I decided to go “old school” with them and take a road trip.

12/20/2013 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

For most of my thirty-two years as the rabbi of the Forest Hills Jewish Center, I have been teaching a weekly class to our Hebrew High School students who attend public high schools. 

12/13/2013 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

The absence this week of Israel’s two leading political figures, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Shimon Peres, at the massive memorial service for Nelson Mandela in South Africa was both painful and sad.  Whether or not illness made it impossible for President Peres to attend is something we cannot know, although surely, it would not have been an easy trip for a man of Peres’ age. 

12/06/2013 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

With Thanksgiving barely a week behind us and Chanukah just ending, it seems a particularly appropriate moment to reflect on this year’s most unusual juxtaposition of sacred and secular celebrations. Beyond the kitsch of “Thanksgivukah,” as so many referred to it, there is a common thread between the two holidays, and it is a significant one. Both are about gratitude.

11/22/2013 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

Anyone who has visited New York City, and of course those of us who live here, has a story about New York cabbies. 

Most of the time, our cabbies speak a dialect of English that is largely unintelligible.  There was a time when the New York City cab population was flooded with Israelis, but nowadays, a large number of the drivers hail from what many would call “one of the Stans:” Uzbekistan, Tadzjikistan, Afghanistan… you get the point. Every once is a while you might encounter a cab driver who actually speaks English and knows his/her way around New York, which in general is a good thing. But then you run the risk of having a driver who insists on talking to you non-stop, from pick-up to drop-off, as you’re trying to grab a minute or two of peace and quiet while you lurch from Point A to Point B. It kind of makes you miss the unintelligible English.