Friday News Bites: Cuba, Sydney, Happy Goats + More

Hello, fellow unicorns. This week, we’re a bit more international with our news bites, and I also have a few bonus stories that amused me. With all the horrible things that happen, it’s good to find a few points of light. Let’s get to it.

Read More Friday News Bites: Cuba, Sydney, Happy Goats + More

Familiarity Breeds Respect – Holiday Version

Okay, maybe the older version of that title phrase (involving contempt) might still be true regarding annoying relatives. (My father used to insist there was just one small group of them who went from wedding to bar mitzvah to reunion, changing accents and clothing but otherwise identical, and including the great-aunts who commiserated about their digestive issues, the cousin who told offensive jokes, and the cocktail-swilling uncle who insisted on singing his off-key version of “New York New York” with the band. But I digress.) Read More Familiarity Breeds Respect – Holiday Version

Where Were You When…

Every generation seems to experience a couple of epic historic moments that define them — we have “The Greatest Generation” with their memories of World War II, former “flower children” who remember The Summer of Love (or at least did some indiscriminate making-out that year), and so on. I’m on the younger side of Baby Boomers — I was 10 in 1969, so the only real hippie experience I had was embroidering flowers on my bellbottom jeans and writing earnest but dreadful poetry with lines like “the earth was meant for love, not pollution.” Read More Where Were You When…

Tradition, Tradition! (or why Martha Stewart’s job is safe)

I’ve never been the Domestic Goddess type – I mean, I cook for my family and sometimes enjoy it, but I tend to stick to meals requiring a minimum of time and ingredients. Read More Tradition, Tradition! (or why Martha Stewart’s job is safe)

Jewish Country Music (??)

I’ve always loved country music for a variety of reasons. In addition to how many women artists there are (compared to other genres like rap and heavy metal), country music also has those wonderful harmonies, great use of humor, and unusually creative rhyme schemes (I love how a good country song can rhyme “pain” and “thing” – say those words with a twang and you’ll get what I mean!)

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I’m An Onion Roll On A Plate of Bagels

Barbra Streisand fans may remember that line as part of her tour-de-force, “I’m The Greatest Star” from Funny Girl. There are lots of times we all feel that strong sense of being different – being the only vegetarian in a house full of carnivores; the sole liberal in a conservative family or the only southerner in your college dorm; having a different nationality or sexual preference than the rest of your friends; being the only girl on the math team; or being the only woman in your office. And through experience, compassion, and tons of fabulous gay characters on hit TV shows, I hope we’ve all learned respect and tolerance for other people’s differences.

Read More I’m An Onion Roll On A Plate of Bagels

The Goyim’s Guide to Chanukah

It’s December, and I’m Jewish. “So, when’s Chanukah?” I have no idea. No, seriously. I don’t know. It could be right now. It might have already passed. I’m not totally sure. I always have to consult The Google to tell me when Chanukah is, and I usually don’t realize it’s started until it’s at least partly over. I want to get this out of the way: not knowing when Chanukah is doesn’t make me a bad Jew. And to try to explain why, I’m going to give you a few basics about this festival.

Read More The Goyim’s Guide to Chanukah

Chanukah on the Little Screen

Happy Chanukah, everyone! No matter how you like to spell it, it seems to have come pretty early, starting last night at sunset. It gets an amount of attention around this time of year disproportionate to its importance on the Jewish calendar, probably so that Christians can pretend that they’re more inclusive an accepting. I am ok with this, mostly because it results in widespread sale of delicious chocolate gelt and some seriously hilarious Chanukah-themed television episodes. Read More Chanukah on the Little Screen