Never a Shortage of Opportunities

Given the crisis in Chile today, I wanted to point out something I mention when I teach parent-child classes (it has more impact when both adults and kids are present): tzedakah is a mitzvah – which does NOT mean “good deed” or “do it for a warm fuzzy”. Tzedakah is a commandment, and one which we are commanded to do daily. That doesn’t always mean “give... read more

Shabbat Ki Tisa (Ex. 30:11-34:35) Ki Tisa – one of the seminal moments in Jewish history. Moses, who has been up on the mountain for 40 days, begins his descent with the tablets of the law. Meanwhile, back at base camp, the children of Israel display both their lack of faith and their inability to count (it was day 39 but they thought it was 40) by demanding that... read more

New Velveteen Rabbi Haggadah is out

Nearly 20 years ago, my complete and utter dis-satisfaction with that (ahem!) respected old tome known as “The Maxwell House Haggadah” caused me to blow the dust off my insufficient Sunday school education and create my own Haggadah. The resulting “AdatoSeder version 1.0” was, to put it politely, a complete mess. But it was still better than the alternative. 2 decades later... read more

Shabbat Tetsaveh (Ex. 27:20-30:10) The portion this week continues the instruction on building the Mishkan, the Priesthood and by extension the Israelite community as a whole. We are told about the Ner Tamid – the light which should burn continually (or perhaps eternally, although that’s a subject of discussion). There’s also a mention of the Jewish... read more


Recently Tablet Magazine ran an article titled “High on the Hog“, where it looked at the phenomenon of cuisine which purposely mixes not just meat and milk, but treif (forbidden foods) with foods considered to be part of the Jewish culinary spectrum (matzo balls, bagels, etc). Several of the speakers talk about cuisine a flexible medium, and a reflection of the cosmopolitan world we live in.... read more

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