Wednesday, November 16, 2011

You've Got [Hate] Mail

You know you’ve made it in life when you receive your very first hate mail. To be fair, mine was only from one person and it wasn’t so much hate-mail as it was hateful comments on my blog. But still. His huge, effervescent personality made it feel like a lot of people . And that made me feel pretty special.

Here are some of my all-time favorites:
Anonymous said…”I don't tell the cashier at Shop-Rite my name. Why should I tell it to you? You are less than she is. She does a necessary job and gets paid the salary the market says she deserves. You are fed by donations as your cult has created an artificial market for useless services.”

Finally. I am getting credit for my contribution to the economy. I mean, sure, sometimes I just wake up and think, ‘Hey I’m going to create a market today.’ And then…Bam, I just do. Then I set up Paypal accounts so I can funnel funds from unknowing fools into my artificial market.

And I do this all from a real live cult. 

This guy is making me look super cool.

Then he goes ahead and says this:

Anonymous said… “If I save one person from falling for your bull$#@! and the bull$#&! of your cult, I will have truly saved a life.

Where does this guy come from? He is great. And the best part is the above comment came just after this one:

Anonymous said... “Your beliefs cause much damage and even loss of human life. human life has no real value anyway. we're just chemicals thrown together. deal with it instead of living in a fantasy world.”

Isn’t he fun?
If you aren't already smitten, read this little gem:

Anonymous said... “The internet is everyone's place. You are no one and nothing. People like you wash floors and polish shoes for people like me. You are a member of a destructive cult, which detracts from the potential of human achievement and stifles freedom of thought.

What. A. Gentleman.
I was only trying to be nice when I responded by saying that he sounded like he needed a hug.Or that a sense of humor might do him some good. But apparently my good intentions were not very well received.

Anonymous said…“I have a fine sense of humor. And your cult prohibits you from giving me a hug. If you did hug me, I would respond by doing the Chabad thing; sticking a knife up your back.

But then he made it all better when he commented under my post about how I wanted to climb a rainbow and sip champagne on the moon.

Anonymous said... “Are you on LSD? To believe what you believe and write like this, I would say you are.

Now there’s the fine sense of humor we’ve all been hearing about.
What. A. Gem. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Dear Mark Zukerberg

If Mark Zukerberg really cared about us like he claims he does, he would do what Megavideo does to crazy mofos who spend too much time on cyber crack dens.When you have been logged in for more than 72 minutes, you would get a popup.

It would go a little something like this:

You have enjoyed 72 minutes of Facebook today. Please wait 25 minutes or click here to buy a life.

Of course, it wouldn’t keep us all off. Do you know that there are actual websites dedicated to showing users how to bypass the Megavideo time limit? I suspect that the same people who frequent those websites will figure out a way to bypass the Facebook thing too.

But most importantly, I wouldn’t know how to. And I can’t follow instructions, so I wouldn’t learn how. And I know there are other computer illiterates out there who wouldn’t be able to either. So this popup will have effectively saved a considerable portion of our population.

Wow. This is a great idea. Why hasn’t Mark Z called me yet?

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Creative Genius Solves Shidduch Crisis

I have just thought of a most genius website. It really just came to me, as most genius ideas do. Probably in the same manner that Facebook came to Mark. Upon its debut you will be astounded. This site will blow your mind. It will change your life. In fact, I'd venture to guess  it will solve the infamous shidduch crisis and change the lives of all the people you care about too.

Say you like a guy. Or a girl. But say his name is Yossi. And you would like to date this Yossi. Luckily for you, I have created this ingenious website. You type it in your browser and find his profile. You click the ‘date me’ button below his photo. Now, one of two pop-ups will pop up. 

If the destiny gods hate you; you will get the following popup:

Model #644 is currently out of stock.Unavailable. You cannot date him. He will not pick you up in a rented/borrowed/owned vehicle. He will not buy you a twelve dollar drink in a dimly lit hotel lobby. You will not get to know him. You will not pass Go. You will not marry him. And here’s why.

He is...

a) Busy. Dating other people who are not you.
b) Not ready for marriage. Because he is still in Huggies
c) Not interested in you. At all.
d) All of the above.

But before you let your little feelings get crushed and hurt, may we recommend these similar candidates we think you’ll enjoy.

The website will then generate a list of men/women similar in looks, characteristics, religious level and personality.

This is obviously a very genius concept. I will be ridiculously successful. I will become a millionaire. I will be famous.“Creative Genius Solves Shidduch Crisis,” the report will read. There will be a photo of me and several photos my *doppelgangers who you will be more than welcome to date.

You're welcome.

An apparition or double of a living person.


Candy for the Soul

If you find yourself craving a spiritual high, chase it. Run after it like you've never run before. Take the next ski lift to spiritual CandyLand. Indulge in the sugar rush. Jump off the Ferris Wheel just as it nears the peek. Climb the stairs in the seven layered skies. Become a hippie. Say outrageously trippy things that only you understand. Talk about G-d like you know Him. Don't mind the naysayers. If you want to fly, fly.

But as long as you have the impelling urge to fly you have not risen high enough. Go higher. Deeper. Closer.

The sign that you’ve achieved the G-dliness you were searching for is that you’re ready to fall back down again.

And when that feeling surrounds you, fall. Slowly. Don't leave pieces of yourself in the clouds. Come back to earth. Taking the G-dliness from your trip down with you as you go. Do as that awesome book suggests: Bring heaven back down to earth.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

25 more things you may have never wished to know about me. but then again, you're reading them anyway, aren't you? why yes, you are

For reasons I can’t really explain, I am dying to jump out of a plane. And do other things that will make my heart race astonishingly fast...I’m an adrenaline junkie...There is something about dawn I find intoxicating. I only wish I were awake to see it more often....But then again, there is a little thing called REM, which is pretty amazing too. So it's a toss-up really. Except it's not. Because the toastiness of curling up in bed is like G-d giving you a giant hug...I’ve lived away from home for ten years ago and I'm only twenty. So if you think about it, I basically raised myself. Knowing this makes me feel super cool...I still have a very hard time understanding why “a whole nother” is not proper English...I really, really want to go to the moon. And I am getting kind of impatient waiting for it to happen...I subscribe to the belief that you may wear rainboots even if it’s not raining. Just as you may wear sneakers even if you’re not running, flipflops even if you’re not at the beach and riding boots even if you aren't on a horse. And I pity the fool who doesn't recognize the soundness of that logic...I find it kinda funny that in order to sound like a decent human being on Facebook, you have to cram your messages with excitable characters like lol and :):):) and !!!!. With all of Facebook’s design updates, shouldn't they come up with better way to sound non-intimidating without overdosing on flirtatious emoticons? ;)....I understand that humor doesn’t translate well via email and sarcasm is often misinterpreted for spite. That’s why I think there ought to be a button you can press when you want your comment to be interpreted in sarcasm. Another for when you want to sound nice. And a whole nother one for when you actually intend to be mean...I am technologically challenged. But I still like to pretend I know the difference between 3g and 4g...It turns out that I am not, in fact, smarter than a fifth grader....Which makes sense since most of my knowledge comes from Snapple facts. And I heard they lie...I wish I could time travel to biblical times and chill with King Shlomo....Music is like a drug to me. Makes me feel alive. Except jazz. Jazz makes me want to punch things....These are the guys that once made me want to write: Dr. Suess. Louis Sachar. Roald Dahl....And the guys that keep me wanting to: David Sadaris. Jake Dubbs. Allie Brosh. Joel Stein....This list is the product of insomnia induced psychosis....I think I’ll go to sleep now.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sholom Rubashkin

It's kind of incredible that two minutes out of your day can alter the course of a life. If you haven't already done so, or have friends who haven't signed the petition for Sholom Rubashkin please click on this link and sign. Then share.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Don’t Feed The Stalkers

You see a face on the street. Or maybe it's on the train. It’s a guy. Or a girl. A mutual friend. A perfect stranger. But the face is not new. No, it's imminently familiar. Just like their first name. Their hometown. Their surname too. You have never been formally introduced. Never spoken a word- verbal or written- to them. Nonetheless, you feel as though you know them. Intimately. And it makes you feel strange inside.

You try to hide this as best you could. If you meet them you inquire their name. Nonchalantly. As though you have never heard of them in your life. The truth is, courtesy of Facebook, you know more about them than you would ever care to admit. Information like their relationship status, political views, taste in music and other intel you suspect you should not know.

As you interrogate them further, asking about their interests and other things you’ve already read about in their profile, you begin to feel like a fraud. The entire conversation is a verbal obstacle course where you must dodge select topics, crawl around certain matters and jump over familiar territory. It's a skill, really, since the entire duration you speak in constant fear that you will accidentally slip their self-written quote and give yourself away.

It’s terribly exhausting. Yet few of us are confident enough to admit how we got into this awkward dance to begin with. We’re so afraid of coming off stalker-ish when the real ludicrousness of if all is- and here’s where it gets fun- people obviously like getting stalked. Dare I suggest, they actually solicit it. How else to account for the millions of Facebook accounts and Twitters and blogs; all networks dedicated to documenting every random wave that surfaces in our brains.

It all begins with that narcissistic bone in our bodies that quietly asks to be fed. She starts in a whisper. A harmless status. An innocent note. Her voice grows louder with photo uploads and video links. She’s often hungry. Riddled with cravings for designer clothing, luxury cars and shameless self-promotion on the internet. Things that make us appear genius and awesome. You can pick up munchies for your inner narcissist at your nearest shopping mall or if you're feeling splurgey, take her out for a five star dinner at the car dealership. For a quick fix, though, Facebook is your man.

But thou shalt not be greedy. After all, stalkers need to eat too. Throw your adoring fans a bone with note, tease them with a mysterious status hors d'ouevre and if they're really good, upload a delicious photo album. Mmm.

I do not wish to imply that everything we do is done for the sake of an audience, nor would I suggest that it isn't. But I invite you to think. Consider how much info swapping we do in only 24 hours.
Even if you aren't posting on the hour, chances are you are "liking" the posts of people who are.

Is it terribly damaging, impossibly self-indulgent and ruining our lives? I'm not ready to get that condemnatory. Mostly because I will be posting this on my Facebook and then hurling sheep at random FB friends.

And I'd like to blame Zukerberg for the ramifications, whatever they may be. Or Tom, if you want to get chronological. These guys took those of us that might have been unassuming, flung us in the social network sphere, and coughed us up all attention-seeking and "like" happy. As I scroll through unfiltered brainwaves on my news feed, I can't but wonder... In time, will we learn portion control or will we perpetually overfeed our stalkers?

Monday, August 1, 2011

The Cult of Starbucks

Do you remember the first time you ordered at Starbucks?

I do.

The memory is rich in my conscious...

I am 14. For months I have been rehearsing the Starbucks dialogue in the mirror and today I finally muster the courage to walk into one of the green awnings lined up and down Broadway. 'This is it', I silently coach myself. Here goes nothing.

“I’ll have a Venti soy vanilla latte,” I tell the barista in the forest green visor. My voice starts off a little shaky but I grow confident halfway through it.

So much so, that I boldly add, “and no whip cream” for good measure.

Then I casually hold out my credit card, like I do this all the time. I smile. I am proud. I have just successfully ordered in calm, sophisticated Starbucks code.

But he doesn’t take it, he lets my arm dangle, and that's when I know I've said something wrong`. Oh, but what? It could be so many things. Word placement. Order of preferences. Did I say small instead of tall? [Did I even order small? I mean tall.] He is just standing there, looking at me awkwardly, as though I have just suggested that there are 52 states in the U.S.

I can see his thoughts churning in his head as he contemplates how to tactfully arrange his words. “Um, lattes don’t come with whip cream…” he says uneasily.

There is no easy way to tell someone that they don’t know which drinks are served with whip cream and which aren’t. There is no good way to break the news to me. How do you tell someone that the are Starbucks illiterate?

I’m still smiling, but I feel like an idiot. Obviously I have not practiced enough. I leave with my venti soy latte sans whip cream, but I have left my pride in the barista's gaping mouth.

I won’t make the same mistake twice. Now when I order, I say it real slow, pausing in between preferences, and finishing each with a high note, like a question.

“I’ll have a tall?”







I want to add “sugar-free” but I’d rather drink sugar than risk coming off uneducated. I wait for the nod, and then I can breathe right knowing I’ve said it correctly. Sometimes I won’t even order the drink I want because I’m not sure how to order it.

And then I get mad.

Who gives people in green aprons and visors the right to make me feel dumb? For one, they look stupid. And for another the names for the sizes don’t even make sense. Tall, for example, leads one to believe that the cup will, in fact be,tall, when in reality, the cup is sized more like a stumpy midget. Grande is not English and is therefore equally conniving.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Anger & Awe

You exert Your strength
In tales of terror
And yet I see tears in Your rain
On my face You painted horror
All the same I sing Your praise
In my heart You are a traitor
But on my lips
Is Your name

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

ET[A] Phone Home

I was two and a half feet tall the day that my little sister was born. I know that because I remember how tall I felt when my head came just underneath our new counter-tops.

Earlier that morning I found my mom in the kitchen stuffing random things in her purse. This meant only one thing. That she was about to go somewhere and by the looks of what she was putting in there it appeared as though it was going to be crazy fun.

“Where are you going?” I asked, trailing her to the garage, where she took out a plastic bag and began filling it with more stuff.

“To the doctor,” she said.

It wasn’t what she said that was deceiving, or even the words she had selected to say it. It was her tone. Calm. Casual. Collected. The same tone one might use to talk about going to the dentist to have their teeth cleaned. This is not the tone one typically uses when they have just gone into labor and their husbands are waiting in the car, beeping on thirty second intervals.

But my mother never was typical. Later she would not elect to have an epidural, as she hadn’t in her previous ten births and afterward she would say it was virtually painless. Mom maintained that if she could have her tonsils taken out with a pair of scissors and no anesthesia, a little childbirth was nothing she couldn’t handle.

The Phone Call came later that day. It called to tell us something exciting had just happened and its name was Ita. At once, I climbed up on our brand new leather sofa and began jumping and whooping. I had no idea why I was so excited or who this Ita might be, but the general lack of parental supervision combined with the eccentricity and hoopla coming from my brothers and sisters had thrust me into a state of irrational, drunken bliss.

My mother was cradling her in a big white blanket when we arrived. She was a dainty little thing with gigantic baby blue eyes. Also, she was bald and she had an alien shaped head. But her head wasn’t what bothered me. Frankly, what was particularly bothersome was how she had just shown up out of nowhere without so much as a warning. Where did she even come from!?

As my brothers and sisters fussed and cooed at the new baby, a terrible thought occurred to me: I was getting replaced by a newer model and there was nothing I could do but watch.

Worse yet, I realized- as the goo-goo ga-ga’s yielded way for weird cartoonish faces and strange clucking noises- she had only been around for a couple days but already she was hogging over two thirds of my designated attention. Or maybe all of it.

And just when I thought we might leave, so I could go to my room and play house, they told me to sit in the chair so I could hold the new kid. They said it real slow, in drawn out syllables and big animated smiles, like I had just won a million dollars.


She was very flimsy and awkward in my arms but I tried to cradle her like I saw the others, so I might steer attention away from her and showcase my sudden spurt of maturity and quick maternal instincts. Only too bad for me, because as I was rocking that baby I accidentally bumped her head on the arm of the wooden chair, which stirred chaos and panic among my family. I guess subconsciously I was trying to say, “Go home. You stupid baby.”

She did. But her home happened to be the same as my home. She was everywhere I didn’t want her to be and no where I wanted her to be (gone). And to make matters worse, she was cute. Real cute. When she cried, people came running, like she was performing Les Misérables on Broadway. But when I tried imitating her ET-ish noises I was told to be quiet because I was giving everyone a headache.

I wasn’t accustomed to this. I was not used to this at all. Before she came around, I could run around in concentric circles chanting “yagul, yagul, yagul” and everyone would think it was drop dead adorable. I said things like “I don’t drink coffee; only peoples do” and got rounds of applause. Now, thanks to a bald-headed yet still mysteriously attractive baby, I had to work for my attention.

I’d heard about kids who sold their baby siblings for money on the playground when their parents weren’t looking. But it was hard to even imagine doing that considering she had nine adults guarding her at all times.

What it was that was so special about her was confounding to me. I doubted she could count to twenty like I could or do consecutive somersaults or even pick up her alien head. In fact, it was funny to entertain the thought of her even attempting to do any of the grown-up things I was able to do. She was the size of a ruler for gods-sake.
But none of my plans to rid her proved effective. Not listing the things she couldn't do that I could do flawlessly, neither did dressing her up in stupid clothes or even pointing at her and laughing.

After a while I could only hope that the spacecraft that had brought her here might take her back. But sadly, even as time progressed she showed few motor skills and it began to seem doubtful that she would ever pick up a phone let alone, dial it.

For Ita. My favorite little sister. I'm glad you never phoned home :)

Saturday, April 30, 2011

When I Was Adopted

While the other kids were moving through stages of cognitive, emotional and behavioral development, I was going through stages of my own. In between my adorable kleptomania and uncontrollable pathological lying, I entered a new stage. One that was entirely different from the previous and subsequent stages, except exactly the same in the sense that they were all ploys for attention. This time I convinced myself that I was adopted.

“Nobody adopts a kid when they already have nine.” my sister told me flatly.

What a buzz kill. I would never tell her that she wasn’t adopted.

I was rapt with the entire concept. It amazed me that parents could just trade in kids like x's and z's in Scrabble. How did it work? I was dying to know. Did children get lined up at the market in height order while potential buyers browsed through their qualifications? Was it just for infants or could big kids play too? How did these parents network to know which ones were for sale?

Eventually, after noticing that I did kind of look like my sisters, I had to admit that I probably wasn’t adopted. Unless all eleven of us were from the same birthparents, which was highly unlikely.

But just because I wasn’t adopted didn’t mean that I couldn’t be. After seeing how easy it was for the girl in Matilda, I suggested that my friend Zoe’s mother adopt me.

“Mom, could we adopt Mushka?” Zoe would ask whilst I put on what I was certain was my most adorable puppy face. To be honest, I wasn’t entirely sure what Zoe stood to gain out of this, but all I really wanted out of life was to lay on a couch and watch Looney Tunes while eating Skittles and peanut butter cups. Also I wanted a Tickle-Me-Elmo and a fabulous Beeney Baby collection. Was that too much to ask for?

Apparently, it was. Her mom just laughed. How rude. Did it sound like we doing this for kicks and giggles? Was my puppy face not puppy-ish enough? Was I too old? Not African enough? Did I have to do cartwheels, list the ways I could improve her family, pull out a broom and start cleaning her house? What did a girl have to do to get adopted around here?

Thursday, March 3, 2011

25 things u probably never cared to know about me. but its my blog so i get to post it anyway

I get a buzz from public speaking only because it absolutely terrifies me.

I can eat anything in the morning. I don’t discriminate against food based on time.

I fell into a dreamless sleep at Inception.

You probably wouldn’t be my friend if you saw me dance like no one was watching.

I had no inhibition as a child.

I’m intimidated by really smart people.

I used to think when people said “Newark” they were just saying “New York” really quickly.

I cry when I see people crying in movies.

I wanted to be a rock star when I was little.

Carrie Bradshaw taught me to write.

I find it difficult to respect people who don’t respect Family Guy.

I never graduated.

When I was bored I memorized the world capitals.

When something is really funny, I smile to myself for a couple minutes after.

I wish I were more like my mother.

I’ve been in six schools and learned in five cities.

I had blue eyes until I was about nine and then they turned green.

I think all newborns look exactly the same.

Driving really really fast is the closest feeling I get to flying.

Redbull gives me wings.

I like constructive criticism. I love the way it stings.

I receive hate mail. I find it both amazingly humbling and dangerously amusing.


Wednesday, February 23, 2011

I would love to climb a rainbow. Sit there and watch the sun bathe in the iridescent clouds. Sip a flute of champagne as the moon pushes the sun over the edge of the world. Gaze at the stars, as they come, one by one to play. I would love to lay on the moon, the cool black air like a symphony of silence. The other planets would put on shows and dance and twirl and their colors would inspire me. Their rings would glow as I floated around them, swimming in the thick abyss. I would love to lay on the grass, an awkward heartbeat next to me, watching the rainbows vanish and appear, the suns falling, the moons rising and the silvery stars winking over the velvety sky.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

September 19, 2007

It's been several years since i wrote this. initially, i believe, they were just words bred from my subconscious. questions that were dormant and were destined to mean something only when I'd begin to understand them. and the better i get to know my questions, the answers only grow more elusive.

September 19, 2007

Is there any one mistake you’d give anything to take back? One scene in your life, you’d pay dearly to erase? Is there one turning point in your life that took you to the wrong side of the tracks? One where you wish you hadn't swerved?

It’s almost Yom Kippur; the most significant day of the entire year. A lifetime in a day. A lifetime of the collection of shame, regret, nullification and raw hope for something better out of yourself and life. It’s the day apologies actually mean something. We’re kneeling before a G-d that prays that we pray to Him. It seems we have it made. G-d tells us that if we do it right we could be forgiven. That’s it, completely forgiven, just like that. For all our sins, our mistakes, our errors in judgment . For anything we’ve ever thought, said or done. So we can go to sleep with no stains on our conscious. So we could count our sheep and fall into a fantasy land where our sins miraculously morph into flying ponies.

Is it that simple, truly? Are sins really like chalk on a blackboard? Can you just erase mistakes, like you do hang man survivors and math equations? But where does that white dust go when it seems to be gone? It never quite disappears. It stays, lingers around you, inside you. No deed goes unnoticed. Unpunished, maybe. But it’s all seen, all heard, all felt. By someone. Secret wounds don’t exist, neither do they vanish. So where do our sins go when G-d forgives us? What do they become?

True, G-d forgives us. Because it’s easy. Because he can. But does cleaning up the debris ever change the fact that the train crashed? That people got hurt? The question remains, just because G-d forgives us, does that mean we can forgive what happened? Does that mean we can forgive ourselves?