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Tuesday, April 29, 2008

On Parting

I may look dumb just smiling and nodding
but if I try to talk I'll only cry
After all the words that have been shared between us
at this time of truth I suddenly feel shy.

Maybe if you knew how much I'll miss you
if you knew how hard it is for me to leave
Then maybe you'd hold on a little tighter
and find just one more thing to say to me.

I know this parting moment has to happen
I only wish it wouldn't come so fast
The only thing to do is end it quickly --
it's the good times, not the pain, I wish would last.

Maybe if you knew how much I love you
if you knew how much it hurts to see you leave
Then perhaps you'd turn away a little slower
and leave a little more of you with me...

Monday, April 14, 2008


Get out your guitar and pick a tune (any one will do)...

I'm coming home
with a suitcase full of dreams
and I always know
that even though you seem
so far away
you're right here at my side
every day
and there's no place I can hide

So I'm coming home
with a suitcase full of hope
because alone
there's no way I can cope
but next to you
I feel sheltered from all harm
so let me through
to embrace your waiting arms

Because I'm coming home
with a suitcase full of love
it's time to show
that I've been thinking of
this journey home
every day, all day long
wherever I roam
I've been singing this song:

I'm coming home...

Wishing all of Klal Yisrael a safe, healthy, kosher, peaceful, uplifting, joyous, beautiful, special yom tov!


Friday, April 11, 2008

BasMelech Braves Brooklyn

Yes, yes, I know. Well, too late -- should have told me that yesterday.

I knew I was in trouble when I saw the streets paved with strollers. I don't think I have ever seen so many strollers in one place outside of Buy-Buy Baby. Seems everyone and her children were out shopping today. One store very wisely had a stroller-sitter out front: a nice way to prevent them from cluttering up the store while keeping the babies safe. (They still haven't found a way to keep the streets navigable and door accessible, but one thing at a time...)

Anyway, I finally got into a store...

Someone told me that black is no longer the most "in" color.

I should have known that sounded too good to be true.
My first thought was that I'd wandered into a non-Jewish funeral by mistake.
The second was, "Hey, I didn't realize nuns also got their clothes here!"

There wasn't just black.
There was black-on-black.
Black with black trim.
Black lace on black on black.
Black on black with a side order of black,-hold-the-color-but-give-me-some-extra-black-to-go.

When I finally found something worth trying on, I was nearly blinded by the whiteness of the hanger. Can you believe it? White, at least, is coming back to Brooklyn. It's not color, but it's a start.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. I didn't take it off the hanger until I reached the dressing clos-- er, rooms. Chasdei HaShem, there was one available right away. It took me a while to figure that out, though, because each one was so full of discarded clothes that it was difficult to tell whether there was actually a human in there. After all, they were all the same col -- er, black.

It seems I wasn't the only one who had that difficulty. During my visit to the dressing room, the curtain was pulled open more than once by unsuspecting customers ("Shaindy?...oops." "Is someone -- oh!") who received an impromptu lesson on alternative methods of locating empty spaces and friends ;-P.

After deciding that maybe I could get used to the black look, especially if it really is going out (heh?) and I wouldn't be identical to every girl in Brooklyn, I finally found what I was looking for: the price tag. My face promptly turned a lovely shade of green just perfect for offsetting the distinctive black tones of the outfit. Now, I don't go shopping often, so I may be out of touch with inflation rates. All I know is that my bank account hasn't inflated one bit.

Anyway, I think that's about enough tongue-in-cheek griping for one trip. Of course, there's more to tell but you'd probably stop reading about now. So let's cut to the finale, in which the valiant BasMelech emerges unscathed and empty-handed.

Interplanetary Science 103

In the first two lessons in this series, we discussed the different needs and desires of boys and girls. In this lesson, we will synthesize the previous findings and imagine them in action in a real-life scenario. To that end, I bring you


Few tools are more powerful and dangerous to a Teacher than the Secret.

The power of a Secret is that it enables one to evade issues of Pride and Fair. No one can cry "Foul!" if they don't know that the Fairness code has been breached. Thus, Fair and Nice can peacefully coexist. Similarly, Pride is a social measure; private matters are somewhat distanced from Pride and not as threatening. This is especially crucial for boys, because receiving Niceness can injure their Pride.

Yes, a Secret is a thing of beauty. But not forever. For the danger of Secrets, of course, is that they are spontaneously combustible. And nothing is as dangerous to a Secret as Friends.

Since boys need Pride above all, there is often a mutual understanding about Secrets: Don't blab mine and I won't blab yours. We all need our Pride; don't risk it.

However, a girl's basic need is Friends. One of the basic tenets of Friendship among young girls is that secrets are shared with Friends. If you know a secret, you have Friends. If you do not share your secret, you're not really my Friend. This is tragic.

Now of course, both boys and girls need both Friends and Pride. Therefore, the Teacher (and parent) must carefully consider the risk-benefit ratio of each Secret. The above analysis is meant only to clarify the various factors involved in making this weighty decision.

This concludes the beginner's series on Interplanetary Science. A more advanced course may be offered in a future semester as new findings arise, but this is the last of the planned installments.

Conversations in Klal

Though it may seem like I've been taking more long blogging breaks lately, the truth is that I've been blogging vicariously through ProfK over at Conversations in Klal. Despite being busier than I am what with all her Pesach-making and appliance-busting, she managed to post my thoughts before I could get a word in edgewise.

Read about Real Life here and here.

Then, if you so desire, read our gripe about the futile quest for perfection in shidduchim here. Since ProfK obviated the need for me to write a full post on the subject, I will just give you my abbreviated take here:
Many people are confused about the purpose of shidduch-seeking. The goal is not to figure out who is the most perfect single being on the planet. It is to find a compatible life partner. The criteria for this are different for different people. While one person may feel that he needs more financial support, another may prioritize intelligence. But when one gets carried away seeking perfection in all areas, one is doomed to failure.

As for ProfK's Brooklyn shopping episode, mine deserves its own post. Coming soon, if I get around to it...

Sunday, April 6, 2008

My Boy

He's my problem.
He's my issue I wake up to face every day.
He's my impossible challenge.
He's my headache.
He's my reason to count down to vacation.

I said
I'll be out for a few days next week.

He said
I'll miss you, teacher.

I said
I got you the best sub in town, and I'm leaving a surprise with her.

He said
When will you be back?

He's my angel.


Visual aid

Thanks, Rafi G, for posting this video clip depicting the story of our exodus from Egypt. I'd seen it before but still can't figure out how to embed it into a blog...

Technically speaking, it leaves something to be desired, but right now I'll take what I can get to get into the Pesach mode... no time to read Let My Nation Go this year :-(