Short Takes

Tikkum Olam, Brazilian Style

10/03/2012
Staff Writer

Last Wednesday night, when much of the Jewish community was still bolting bagels and lox to break the Yom Kippur fast, about 50 Jews were taking in the art and music of Umbanda, an eclectic religion unique to Brazil, at a downtown gallery.

“We tried to provide a creative post-Yom Kippur experience,” said Alex Minkin, 39, a creator of Ticun Brasil, the group that hosted the party. He works by day as a consultant.

Yiddishkeit and Brazilian culture come together at Ticun Brasil event. Photos by Rocío Pichon Rivière

Seeking Teen Activists

09/19/2012
Editorial Intern

At age 13, Zak Kukoff of Thousand Oaks, Calif., would watch his autistic younger cousin sit alone on the playground. “It’s not that students didn’t want to be her friend — they just didn’t know how,” he said. “It hurt me to see.”

Diller Teen Award-winner Daniel Rosenthal of Santa Rosa, Calif., takes his magic shows to hospitals and schools.

Israeli Films, Now Streaming

09/19/2012
Special To The Jewish Week

Looking for a little Israeli culture but don’t want to leave your house? Well, how about streaming an award-winning Israeli movie with your choice of snack: popcorn or bamba (Israel’s snack of choice, peanut-butter puffed goodness). Make it the ultimate movie night with one of the Israeli classics like “Sallah Shabati” or even a film in movie theaters right now.

A scene from “Aviva, My Love,” an Israeli film available on new JCC in Manhattan streaming website.

Holocaust Railroad Case To Proceed

09/04/2012
Staff Writer

For the first time, the U.S. Court of Appeals has found that a case may be brought against a foreign national railroad in a Holocaust-related case that seeks billions of dollars.

Late last month, the court in Chicago refused to dismiss a suit against the Hungarian State Railroads (also known as the MAV) brought by Hungarian victims of the Holocaust who claimed the railroad must compensate them for the property it took from them in violation of international law.

A lawsuit against Hungary’s wartime railroad may be brought, according to a U.S. Court of Appeals.

Threading The Needle To Survive

01/27/2015
Culture Editor
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For years, Rena Margulies Chernoff of Brooklyn traveled to Boston on Jan. 27. She and a cousin who also survived Auschwitz  — they posed as twins — would celebrate the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz as their personal day of rebirth.

Muslim Pol Looks For A Jewish Home

01/21/2015
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Outside the Moriah Synagogue in the central Israeli city of Petach Tikvah, boys in ritual fringes and girls in long skirts handed out fliers for the dozens of candidates running in the Jan. 14 primary for the Jewish Home party, a right-wing, Modern Orthodox faction. Religious voters trickled in and out of polls in the synagogue lobby.

Anett Haskia is a rarity among Arab-Israelis.  Ben Sales

The ‘Deli Man’ Cometh To Times Square

01/21/2015
Special To The Jewish Week
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This is a busman’s holiday for Ziggy Gruber. The round-faced restaurateur from Houston (Texas, not Street), is sitting in Ben’s Kosher Delicatessen Restaurant, an enormous and bustling kosher deli near Times Square, talking Jewish food and chatting about his movie debut in the new documentary film “Deli Man.”

Ziggy Gruber of Houston’s popular Kenny and Ziggy’s deli, at Ben’s this week. Michael Datikash

Memories Of Anne At ‘Wiesenthal’ Show

01/14/2015
Special To The Jewish Week
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Saints do not exist in Judaism, but if they did, Anne Frank would be an odds-on candidate for canonization.

Anne Frank’s second cousin, Monica Smith, with Tom Dugan of “Wiesenthal,” at recent performance. Courtesy of “Wiesenthal"

Thin Is Out On Israeli Runway

01/07/2015
Staff Writer
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Turns out there is such a thing as being too thin. At least in Israel.

In a first, models in the Jewish state with a BMI (body mass index) of less than 18.5 are banned from the catwalk, photo shoots and ad campaigns. According to that standard, a female model who is 5-feet-8 can weigh no less than 119 pounds.

Is your BMI under 18.5? Israel now legislating models’ weight. Getty Images

Landing A Charedi Woman In The Knesset

12/31/2014
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Racheli Ibenboim acts as if she’s in a rush, repeatedly checking her phone before hurrying off to her next appointment exactly 30 minutes after the current one begins.

Racheli Ibenboim is urging women to boycott charedi parties in March’s elections unless they include female candidates.
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