Friday, March 31, 2006

Another year older, still no wiser

I am in a pensive mood as I reflect on my blogoversary, a time to look back at a year of ups and downs, quality writing and awful poetry, inciteful issues and laughable diatribes. 365 days closer to the time G-d has earmarked for me to join Him back in the big movie theatre in the sky, to pay my dues, time after time.

8,760 hours passed by. Most of those were spent sleeping or in front of a computer. Did I make a difference to anyone? Could someone have read my words and stopped and said "yes, TRK is right, I will stop being a coward and ask out the girl I've liked for so long". Am I a third of the way to Gan Eden?

Have I become any closer to G-d, to doing His will, to becoming the person He knows I can be? Thousands of souls are clamoring for TRK to touch them, enlighten them, inspire them. And yet I stay rooted to American Idol! Polar opposites, distant objectives, worlds apart. Who am I?

What will the next year if blogging hold? Shall I become old and jaded, yearn for the old days and the early gang, yet many have moved on, married, dropped off blogworld, advanced to bigger and better things? Or have they been replaced by a new fresher bunch, eager Young Turks ready for revolution, inspired to help overthrow this awful corporate apathy that descends like a dark heavy cloud over all of us?

I will keep going, because I believe I still have plenty to say, lots of challenging and penetrative ideas. I do still get attacks of insight that I haven't yet posted.

Thank you to all of you who have come here, read my words, commented on them - even if it is to tell me how wrong I am!

Long Live Blogging!


Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Bed Habits

Just a few questions. Do you:-

- Turn over your quilt or pillow every so often or move your head around to get the cold areas?
- Change the sheets once a week, once a month or just wait till they become part of the bed and throw another one on (you know who you are!)?
- Leave a limb - usually a foot - hanging over the edge?
- Lean back and rest your leg on something half way up the wall?
- When feeling down, eat a whole bag of potato chips in bed and then torture yourself by rolling around in the crumbs all night?
- Climb into bed all sweaty after a game, only showering the next day?
- Have items on a stand at the end of your bed and sometimes knock them over when stretching?
- Have all sorts of useful things roll under the bed just out of arms reach?
- Your cover sheet can only reach any 3 corners at a time - which corner will you give up on?
- In winter you go to sleep in sweats and wake up shvitzing?
- Play a prank by making an apple pie bed, where the undersheet is actually folded up half way down the bed, so that the prankee gets in and cannot move any further than that?
- Use more pillows to read than to sleep, or just sleep on a ridiculous amount of them scattered around your head?

Feel free to ignore. Or add more. Or just snore.


Friday, March 10, 2006

The Lessons of Exile

To introduce my general theories about Israeli politics I will first present my religious ideals. I am assuming we believe that G-d has a message for us in Jewish history, and that this message is discernable - as opposed to the causation of events and reasons for them etc.

So for the last 2000 years G-d decided to have us thrown out of most countries in existence, subjected to pogroms, dhimmi status, book-burnings, blood libels, Inquisitions, you name it we had it, even if we didn't expect it, because nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition, we have two main weapons .....

Barring a few lucky years in one or two locations (Bavel, Golden Spain) we had it pretty bad, as a minority amongst a ruling majority who didn't like us very much. Walled up in our ghettoes, extremely restricted in the kind of profession we could do, subject to heavy taxation, we know what it is like to live as a minority. I would imagine this point to be self-evident.

After this inordinately long exile, G-d decided to grant us the gift of the state, to see how we will perform. Have we learned the lessons of the Exile, have we sufficiently internalized what it means to live in the minority? I believe we have failed in this.

It is also self-evident to me that in Israel that minorities do not get sufficient recognition and respect. Whether it be Sefardim, Ethiopians, Russians, Arabs, settlers, the disabled and others. It doesn't seem to me that those responsible with the running on the state really show large amounts of compassion to the minorities living amongst them.

It also disturbs me that the large majority of religious leaders do not speak up about this. They are not my leaders if they haven't yet learned the lesson that the Jewish people suffered so much in order for us to learn. I am not trying to present a political platform, rather a moral imperative that all Jews must have, especially those of us who believe that G-d has been trying to tell us lessons in history.

Israel has done a great job in absorbtion, but so much more needs to be done, and religious Jews worldwide should be leading the march and fighting the fight to show that Israel can truly be a succesful experiment, where the morality of the Jews shines through for all to see.


Wednesday, March 08, 2006

The Haves and the Have-nots

Excuse the blogging hiatus, I guess I was in a blump (Blog-slump). This post is not about material existence, but rather joie de vivre, the passion and adventure of that wonderful gift called life. Some of us have it, others don't.

Many people vicariously live adventurously through others, as a means of enriching their existence. What do I mean? Well, par example, I once had a girlfriend who was not the most exciting nor the most adventurous of females, but she went out with a few "wild" guys, which I guess gave her life excitement and flair through them.

These primary people, the Haves, they are the ones who grab life by the scruff of the neck, shake it down a little, glare it in the eye and say "I am going to live you to the max, whether you like it or not". The vicarious ones, the Have-nots, merely allow themselves to be caught along in the slipstream.

The same is true in blogworld. I imagine there are many who sit around going "did you read X's blog?" or "have you seen what Y wrote?", without themselves having contributed or dared to write anything themselves. They are secondary creatures, living off the derring-do of others.

Many also get their kicks out of discussing their friends or relatives' antics, living their life through the prism of gossip and the frisson one gets when hearing about the adventures or misadventures of others. While the Haves have no need for this, their life being fulfilling and exciting.

I understand not everyone is fortunate enough to be able to become one of the Haves, someone stuck in a dead-end job all their life, or having to run a household with a layabout spouse, but more often than not it is in our hands. Who do we want to be, the Haves or the Have-nots?

Plenty more to come