From alte kaker, or old man in Yiddish, to zatar, an Israeli spice, Americans’ Jewish identity has long flavored their English.
Now a professor has harnessed the Internet to collect those heimish (cozy and warm) expressions that have made their way into the vernacular from sources including, but not limited to, Aramaic, Ladino, Yiddish and Hebrew.
Sol Adler, executive director of the 92nd Street Y, got special delight out of paying some bills on the Chase Bank website on Sunday — before logging off, he noticed an announcement for “Giving Tuesday,” a national program under the Y’s auspices that will start next week.
They may have been sitting in plush chairs in the ornate sanctuary of a synagogue in the Silk Stocking district, but for one night last week authors and journalists Leon Wieseltier and Yossi Klein Halevi were two sons of Brooklyn back in their native borough.
Hurricane Sandy may have crippled New York and New Jersey, knocking out power, displacing thousands from their homes, complicating the elections and, after some mayoral flip-flopping, leading to the cancellation of the New York Marathon.
But it is not getting in the way of Kosherfest, the annual trade show of the kosher food industry scheduled for Nov.13-14.
Oren Neiman is sitting in his Westchester apartment with no electricity, yet another victim of Hurricane Sandy. Fortunately, his musical partner Gilad Ben Zvi still has power, “and we’re spending a lot of time there,” Neiman sheepishly admits.
Big Bird. Binders. “A bunch of stuff.” Another Internet meme has joined the slew spawned by the election. But this time, unlike the Irish “malarkey,” it’s got a Jewish ethnic angle.
Mitt Romney used the word “tumult” several times in Monday night’s debate to refer to the results of President Barack Obama’s foreign policy in the Middle East, appropriately stirring up a storm of discussion online and in traditional media.
The comedian Sarah Silverman drew chuckles four years ago with her video urging young Jews to convince their grandparents in Florida to vote for Barack Obama. But a Dallas rabbi is not laughing about her latest pro-Obama video.
In an open letter to Silverman that has generated a firestorm of criticism on the Internet, Rabbi Yaakov Rosenblatt, who is Orthodox, gives Silverman a verbal whip lashing for her video, “Let My People Vote.”