Short Takes

Keyes Doesn't Fit

06/06/2002 - 20:00
Staff Writer
Some MSNBC viewers want to throw away the Keyes. Arab Americans and other critics of Israeli policies who are fed up with the staunchly pro-Israel stance of Alan Keyes have started an on-line petition drive to get the talk-show host and former presidential candidate (or his views) off NBC's news channel. MSNBC learned about the campaign from Keyes supporters, not his detractors.

Tolerance On Ice

06/06/2002 - 20:00
Staff Writer
It was a usual scene in a locker room at the Chelsea Piers hockey rink Sunday morning. Two teenagers sat next to each other, removing their pads and uniforms, discussing a late-game lapse that allowed the only goal surrendered in their team's 9-1 victory. But something was unusual: One of the players was an Orthodox Jew, a student at the Ramaz day school on the Upper East Side; his teammate was black, a Catholic who studies cross town at St. Agnes Boys High School.

Taking A Crack At Mah Jong

06/06/2002 - 20:00
Staff Writer
What happens when East meets West? When they meet on the Lower East Side, they play mah jong. Or mah jongg. About 700 participants in the second annual Egg Rolls & Egg Creams Block Party, sponsored by the Eldridge Street Project, learned on Sunday that the game has two spellings. And two sets of rules. "The Western version has one 'g.' The Chinese spell it with two," says Rebecca Faulkner, a staff member at the project, whose aunt, Sheila Solomon, right, came from upstate Suffern to try her hand at the tiles game.

The Power Of A Smile

05/30/2002 - 20:00
Staff Writer
Gershon Resnik, a Canadian-born New Yorker, knows some French, Italian, Hebrew and Yiddish, but the other day he greeted Israeli children in fluent Chihuahua. With a red rubber nose, floppy pants and a big grin, he walked on stage (in Haifa, in a northern neighborhood of Jerusalem, in a West Bank city) holding a hula hoop. "I'd bark at the audience and try to get them to bark back at me," before jumping through the hoop, Resnik says.

Genealogy An On-Line Hit

04/25/2002 - 20:00
Staff Writer
What a difference a "k" makes. Gary Mokotoff, a Jewish genealogist by vocation and avocation, had over the last 22 years created a family tree spanning seven generations and 1,000 names. He had traced the history of relatives, knew where many of them lived and what kind of lives they lived. But there were some gaps in his personal roots research: like details about the arrival at Ellis Island of his great-grandparents from Poland on the eve of World War I.

Today's Lesson: Genocide

04/18/2002 - 20:00
Staff Writer
In this post-9-ll period, Americans can learn about genocide every day in the media. Now some study it at the Ph.D. level as well.

Fruits Of Their Labor

10/16/2003 - 20:00
Staff Writer
On Sunday the rabbis kept the prime minister waiting. In 1997, during the height of the debate in Israel over the "Who is a Jew?" issue (which religious standards would determine converts' status as Jews) Rabbi Ammiel Hirsch led a delegation of American Reform rabbis to Jerusalem "literally overnight." The rabbis' plane landed five hours late. Whisked from the airport to the office of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu late at night, they found the Israeli leader still working. "He waited for us five hours," Rabbi Hirsch said.

Saturday, The Rabbis Marched

10/09/2003 - 20:00
Staff Writer
Shabbat Shuvah, the Saturday between Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur, traditionally presents rabbis the opportunity to sermonize before a packed congregation about problems in the Jewish community. This year Shabbat Shuvah presented some rabbis with a problem. Should they encourage members of the Jewish community to attend a rally promoting economic and civil rights for immigrants in the United States, but which took place on Shabbat?

Days Of Guffaw

09/25/2003 - 20:00
Staff Writer
"But don't let me catch you laughing." It's not the traditional punch line for a classic Jewish joke, but a comedy club that hosts High Holy Days services is not your traditional comedy club.

Courting Success

08/21/2003 - 20:00
Staff Writer
He was the first Israeli to reach a finals event at Wimbledon. He also made a semifinal. What's next for Andy Ram? More of the same at the U.S. Open, says Israel's rising tennis star. Maybe a championship.
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