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Sweet Rose Ramblings (AKA The Call-Waiting Blog)

A place for my unformed thoughts. Help me sort them out!

Monday, April 30, 2007

Confession Time

Courtesy of my rarely-commenting friend, reminiscent of Post Secret, is IveScrewedUp, a place to go to confess your deep, dark secrets and view the confessions of others. A virtual confessional, not sure if it comes complete with preist and rosary, but interesting. Check it out.

Ok, ok, back to studying...


I'm getting to know that word way too well. The problem is, it's fine when I procrastinate and it only affects me. But when I'm part of a group and I'm dragging the whole group down, it's not so fine. At least, I feel bad because I know what it's like to have to deal with the slacker of the group. Don't wanna be that chick. Off to work.

Monday Again

So, the toner for the copier in my office finally came. It was the wrong size - they sent us the wrong toner. After calling the company once again, and pleading with them my case about the fact that we have had NO copy machine for a week now, due to their error, they miraculously located a toner cartridge in the Manhattan area for us and are (hopefully) hand-delivering it to my office. Thanks!

Update on my copy machine - 10 minutes later we have a functioning copy machine. Amazing how quickly things can happen.

In other news, I went out during my lunch break and it is gorgeous AND warm out. Makes me happy :)

Monday :( Continued

It's not just me - it has been confirmed that my whole office is being afflicted by Monday. I think it should be banned. (Wouldn't that be nice?)

I am, however, having a good hair day. Gotta be something.

Mondays :(

I just spent the past two hours working on a report, to have it given back to me needing to be completely redone because the person I was doing it for failed to give me information that I needed.

The construction has been going on all morning, I've had a headache for the past hour.

There is still no toner in our copy machine because the company that I ordered it from last Tuesday, who promised me delivery the next day, sent our order to the wrong address even though I specifically gave them our new address that we moved to a year ago.

On the bright side, it is sunny out. I am so ready for summer, so I bought these shoes for my summer enjoyment (not wearing them today because it was raining when I left the house).

Sunday, April 29, 2007

No Title Tonight

It seems as if a weekend should leave you refreshed, rather than exhausted. But I'm wiped out tonight, though it's a good exhaustion, the exhaustion of having seen lots of friends for happy reasons (specifically, my friend's engagement party).

Do you sometimes wonder if your efforts are really worth it? Whether they are actually rewarded? Or whether, because of the fact that you hope for some reward, your efforts are necessarily discarded - you know, the whole "Man plans, God laughs" thing?

Schools Doing it Right

Check out this article about a Bronx school that had a class made a film for the Tribeca Film Festival. I think more schools should be engaging their students in these kinds of projects.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Post-Shabbos Musings

I met a woman over Shabbos who was in town visiting. I don't know exactly how old she is, but I'm guessing somewhere in her mid-40's. She's never been married, is extremely successful career-wise and I found her to be a lot of fun to talk to. We commiserated a bit about dating, which she is very understandably tired of. I told her I would keep my eyes open for her. We had a slightly embarrassing moment when a woman at shul who is very sweet and always wishes me a good Shabbos asked if this visitor was my mother. I felt bad for my new friend, and bad for the woman who said it. I just said no and introduced them. Ouch.

I went to friends of mine for Shabbos lunch whose oldest son is almost 13. He is deep in teenager-hood, despite not technically being a teenager yet. I know a few families who have kids around this age who are going through similar phases and I always find it amusing and interesting and memory-inducing (cuz I was definitely one of those real teenagers - sorry mom and dad). I was musing with my friend about how I wonder what teenagers were like a century ago, when they often were working to help support their families at an early age. Whether this teenager-hood is a new phenomenon and what society has done to cause it to be so gut-wrenching (I still flash-back to the amazing though short-lived My So-Called Life that encapsulated the raw high school experience so scarily well).

There is a theory of multiple intelligences. I did a report on it last semester. I'm working on a theory of my own (likely to never be published, because that would take more work than just thinking about it) on multiple self-esteems and how it seems to me that a person (I'm thinking specifically women here, but I'm sure men are affected also) can have different levels of self-esteem in relation to different aspects of their lives and personalities. For example, a person can have very high self-esteem when it comes to their career, but low self-esteem when it comes to their parenting skills. What I haven't figured out is whether their is a composite self-esteem level that combines all the other levels together to give an overall level or whether they really act in separate, independent realms within a person. I need to do more work on my theory.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Fridays Off

So, very little actual work happened today, on my day off in which I'm supposed to be using for schoolwork, but which only seems to occur when I'm really stressing (which I probably should be right now, but I'm not). I spent the day baking for my friend's vort on Sunday, shopping for wedding clothes (oh, yeah, and some other stuff) and getting a pedicure (it's sandal time) with a friend who could easily be classified as a bad influence, but the truth is, our time spent together is almost mutual therapy for the both of us. I still have a crazy amount of schoolwork to do, and absolutely no motivation to even look at it, but my feet are sure pretty.

On a completely different note, Jack's post about dreaming made me think about my dreams. Two of my main, persistent dreams, are of 1) being an astronaut, and 2) being a neuropsychologist. I like telling people that I want to be an astronaut to see what their reaction will be. Some people dismiss me as just being silly, others can't quite figure out whether I'm kidding or not, and some ask me seriously whether I've tried to pursue it and/or give me their honest opinion about being an astronaut. I finally give in and admit that I know it's probably not going to happen (realistically, neither is being a neuropsychologist, though that one is more realistic than being an astronaut). Even though I know it's not going to happen, I still like to dream about it.

Anyway, have a good Shabbos!

Sad News

I find it sad that New York City is happy about the "very encouraging new for [the] city" and "real progress" that is signified by the fact that the high school graduation rate increased from 47% to 50% in the past year. Yes, this is progress, I suppose and any little step is a good thing, but how on earth did it get to the point that the school system is failing to graduate a full half of their students? I will give them that education is an extremely difficult field and the fact that students are on so many levels and need so many different things makes it so hard to adequately teach everyone on their level, but I would hope that a city like NY should be able to boast more than half of their students being served in a reasonable way - not superbly, but at least well enough to get by. Sad.

Dean at M.I.T. Lied

Marilee Jones, Dean of Admissions at M.I.T., just resigned after a long career, and upon her resignation, admitted that she completely made up her academic credentials. Wow. She didn't even have a Bachelor's degree. Which makes me wonder what good a degree actually is - did she do a worse job in her position due to the fact that she didn't have a degree? It doesn't sound like it. It is wrong that she lied, but she put in the hard work and moved her way up the ranks and I doubt that anyone affected by her during her career could say that the fact taht she wasn't formally educated had a detriment on their outcome. So is a degree really that important?

Wisdom from Grey's

But as tough as wanting something can be...

The people who suffer the most, is those who don't know what they want.

Love that show.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Gardening Lessons

I've been meaning to link to this post by the Frum Philly Farmgirl for a while. It really touched me and made me think. Check it out.

Counseling Women

Tonight we talked about the unique considerations of counseling women. It's funny to me that a group that makes up 51% of the population is a group that is also the target of discrimination and considered a group that needs special consideration. It's even funnier to me considering the fact that in the field, men are a huge minority, with none in my classes this semester whatsoever. To give my class credit, there was no man-bashing involved.


There's a book that I decided I should read. I also knew that amongst my friends, someone should already own the book. I started hitting the most likely suspects, and my second target hit the bullseye. And the funny part was why this friend owns the book. I gave it to her for her birthday last year (but had totally forgotten). Good gift, I guess.

The Catholic Matisyahu

Monks Who Play Punk, in the NY Times, about some monks who are rocking their order. Complete with the robes and long beards, these monks are bringing in the good Catholics (and others) in droves. Quite interesting, check it out.

The End of Chick Flicks?

Article in the NY Times about the demise of women-oriented movies. I wonder how the author of the article would classify the thoughtful, sometimes artsy type of movies I enjoy (since the chick flicks it cites usually leave me rather uninspired or amused). Maybe they should try for some gender-neutral movies?

Surrogate Motherhood in Jewish Law

Check out this fascinating post from Chana, who transcribed a medical ethics lecture at YU on surrogate motherhood. I wish I could have been there.


I have a few different thoughts at the moment and don't feel like doing different posts, so here goes:

- Today is Bring Your Kid to Work Day. I heard about it this morning on the bus when they were announcing that children ride free on the way to work with their parents today. I thought to myself how much fun that would be and how my co-workers should bring their kids in, but how unfortunately, I didn't hear about it in advance. Low and behold - we have an 11-year-old (I think that's how old he is) joining us today in honor of the occasion. I'm afraid he might get bored, but I was happy to see him here.

- I remember "bring your kid to work day" as not so exciting when I was growing up, mainly because my brothers and I were constantly at my parents' work. Almost every single day, in fact, especially since we moved to Alabama. Before that, we still were regular visitors, and when we were sick, my mom would take us with her, so it wasn't exactly a fun treat (except for the fact that she was a teacher and her students would often give me candy).

- My friend and I had to go pick something up in Hackensack yesterday. Neither of us had ever been there before. We printed out Mapquest directions and then decided that we knew the route better than Mapquest and we would figure it out for ourselves (without a map). Umm, right, so that didn't really work out. We started from scratch, trying to follow the printed directions and when that didn't really work out either, we followed my intuition (which usually is dysfunctional when it comes to directions) and we actually found the place we were looking for! Completely randomly, but it worked out. Yay us.

- Yesterday was a day punctuated by fire engines, which kinda freaked me out a bit. I woke up at 4 AM yesterday morning to loud trucks across the street. When I finally managed to drag myself out of bed to look out my window, I saw several large fire engines in front of the house across the street. They left very shortly afterwards; I still don't know what was going on. Then during lunch, I was walking towards the store and there were fire trucks all over the place, with people staring upwards. Don't know the story. And on my commute home, there was an overturned truck, surrounded by fire engines. I'm hoping it's not an omen of anything.

K, think that's all for now. Have a great day!

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

More Construction

I was just informed that, in addition to ridiculously loud, obnoxious drilling that continues to go on in the lot next to my office, giving me headaches almost every day and absolutely interfering with my productivity (ok, fine, so I don't do a whole lot while I'm here anyway, so maybe not my productivity but definitely my sanity), two more buildings that are adjacent to my office are going to be knocked down and be rebuilt over the course of the next few months. No peace and quiet for me. Ever.

Ed in '08

This may be one of the very few posts ever discussing politics on this blog, but I absolutely applaud Bill Gates for this one.


I was reading about the Don Imus affair in my issue of Newsweek the other day and noticed that they used the word "shtick" in the article. I was surprised that a national magazine would use a Yiddish colloquialism that I suspected so many of the people reading the magazine wouldn't understand. I mentioned this to some people during Shabbos and they were under the assumption that everyone knows what "shtick" means, but I pointed out that I doubt it's a popular word amongst those in Alabama, at which point it was suggested that not that many people in Alabama probably read Newsweek (to which I objected and used as proof that my parents receive the magazine).

Then today one of my co-workers came up to me and used the word "kvetch." I relayed my previous conversation to her and she told me she thinks everyone knows those kinds of words these days. But I think it's because I'm living in NY. She agreed with my point, and mentioned that people here don't use words like "fret" and "reckon" which I definitely accept as part of my vocabulary and have rarely thought anything of, not even realizing that they were considered Southern terms (especially "fret").

It's interesting how these words become so normal that we don't even realize until we find ourselves in different parts of the country. (I also never realized until living here that I put the accent on words such as "insurance", "umbrella" and "Thanksgiving" in a different place than those from up here in Yankee territory.)

Possibly Habitable Planet Found

This article certainly caught my eye this morning with its headline about a new planet being found that seems to have the features that would hospitable to life. I readily admit that don't know that much, but I have to say that I wonder at the assumptions the scientists are making. This quote marked my skepticism - "Liquid water is critical to life as we know it." The "as we know it" part is what bothers me. The article is full of the exciting news that this newly-found planet is like our own Earth, but what if life as we know it is not the only life out there? What if a totally different type of life thrives not on water, but on something completely different? Maybe what the scientists are really saying is that this planet could possibly have the kind of life that we recognize and can study. Whatever it is though, it is interesting.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Free Museums

This is awesome - Bank of America totally gets bonus points for this.

Out of Supplies

I don't understand why my co-workers can't tell me when we are out of certain supplies, or when they use things that need to be ordered. I have begged and pleaded people to inform me when we are close to running out of something. I have asked people over and over to let me know so that there is no emergency when we completely have none left. But no. No one bothers. So where are we now? Without a copy machine, because there is no toner in ours. I'm tempted to not buy any for a week just to teach everyone a lesson. Except I feel like it wouldn't work. Sigh. Sorry for the vent.

Noctilucent Clouds

I can't wait to see the photos from this mission.

Adolescent Medicine

Interesting article in the NY Times about the medical specialty in adolescent medicine. Adolescence is the age that particularly interests me, mainly because it's just such a fascinating time in life (fascinating but incredibly difficult). The article discusses the fact that few doctors choose adolescent medicine, mainly because medically, adolescents are rarely seen as a separate group from children, despite their very separate needs. Adolescence is such an interesting field because of the changing dynamics of it and the culture that people this age have developed for themselves. Anyway, check out the article.

Monday, April 23, 2007

False Importance

I got a magazine in the mail here at work addressed to my name with the title "Office Manager" after my name. That is my title, I know, but to have someone else recognize it made me feel all important. Ignore the fact that even after glancing through the magazine I still have no idea what it is talking about (I think it's some kind of business information type thing that I pay no attention to). I guess they don't know that even despite my fancy title, really my job just boils down to showing my co-workers how to send e-mails and acting like I know what I'm talking about.

Lean on Me Redux

This article in the NY Times about a high school in the poorer section of St. Louis manages to do exactly as intended - pull at your heart. Reminiscent of the movie Lean on Me, the principal does all he can with extremely limited resources, and I'm touched by the dreams of the students described.

And here, some more stories of those who dare to dream.

Car Update

This morning, I jump-started my car all by myself for the first time. My neighbor lent me her car for the good battery (see my story on Kindness Happens). I got to the dealership right before it opened, and an hour and $250 later, my car is up and running. I even made it to work, only and hour and half late. It's back to business.

Sunday in the Village

Since my car wouldn't run yesterday (still working on that one, hopefully better news later today), I decided to go somewhere that I could get around without a car - the city. I wandered around the Village and Washington Square Park yesterday afternoon and had a really great time. I bought a new purse and was offered a trip to Nepal, anytime I want, by the guy who sold them. I was offered marjuana by some man in the park. I saw break-dancers who jumped over five audience members. I saw bunches of people playing music and showing off their talents. And I enjoyed the beautiful weather and very colorful people that New York has to offer. It was a lot of fun.

Sunday, April 22, 2007


One of my closest friends just got engaged. I'm sad for two reasons - 1) that I'm not there to give her the hugest hug right this second, and 2) because I can't go to her l'chaim tonight because of my car. But I will absolutely be at her vort next Sunday and I'm so incredibly happy for her I can't even express it in words.


Today's LOTD is in honor of the beautiful weather and the hopes that it decided to grant me a bit of a tan (cuz I could really use it!).

Sheryl Crow
Soak Up the Sun

My friend the communist
Holds meetings in his RV
I can't afford his gas
So I'm stuck here watching TV
I don't have digital
I don't have diddly squat
It's not having what you want
It's wanting what you've got

I'm gonna soak up the sun
Gonna tell everyone
To lighten up (I'm gonna tell 'em that)
I've got no one to blame
For every time I feel lame
I'm looking up o I'm gonna soak up the sun
I'm gonna soak up the sun
I've got a crummy job
It don't pay near enough
To buy the things it takes
To win me some of your love
Every time I turn around
I'm looking up, you're looking down
Maybe something's wrong with you
That makes you act the way you do
Maybe i am crazy too


I'm gonna soak up the sun
While it's still free
I'm gonna soak up the sun
Before it goes out on me
Don't have no master suite
I'm still the king of me
You have a fancy ride, but baby
I'm the one who has the key
Every time I turn around
I'm looking up, you're looking down
Maybe something's wrong with you
That makes you act the way you do
Maybe I am crazy too


I'm gonna soak up the sun
Got my 45 on
So I can rock on.

Still Stranded

My car is still dead. Not that I have done anything to attempt to fix it. It's going to have to wait until tomorrow, since my car is still under warranty and I am hoping that the dealer will take care of it for little or no cost. You don't realize how dependent you are on something until it gets taken away. Never fear - I did manage to take a walk to go buy some pretty make-up as a consolation for being stranded. Happy Sunday everyone!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Dead Car

My car won't start :( I'm at my friend's apartment, after taking her grocery shopping, because her car was also compromised and when I went to go home, nothing doing. Nada. I called my roadside assistance number and they supposedly have someone on the way. It's not very nice that my car is doing this to me, considering the fact that I have been telling people all the time how amazing my car is and the fact that I never have trouble with it. That's what I get for showing my appreciation. Hopefully, I'll be up and running soon.

Update - My roadside assistance service came and jump-started my car. However, after letting it run for 20 minutes and driving it home, it won't restart. Back to the drawing board :(

Less Invasive Surgery Not Popular

My rarely commenting friend sent me this article about surgeons who have been developing techniques for less invasive surgeries by going through natural opening in the body. Interestingly, while these surgeries take less of a toll on the body, patients and doctors alike are disturbed by the prospect of them and I have to admit that I shudder at reading the description of an appendix being taken out of a patient's body through his mouth. My solution is just to not have any surgeries at all, but barring that, it does seem odd that I would prefer being cut open to having anything removing from an already present orifice.

Hero Featured

I opened up my NY Times homepage this morning and this story about Liviu Librescu's burial in Israel was plastered across the center. It's a bit refreshing to see a tribute to a hero being focused on, especially in light of the exploitative and shudder-inducing coverage that has been the focus until now.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Happy Jacket

Earlier this evening, I was telling a classmate a story in which I used the words "Heavy Jacket." My instructor misheard me and thought that I said "Happy Jacket." I decided I really liked the idea of a happy jacket and am planning on making one for myself out of a denim jacket I have at home. Suggestions are currently being taken for how to make it happen. Fire away.

My Office

Sometimes my office can actually be a lot of fun. One of my co-workers has been having a bad day. Not only did I have chocolate that someone had given us earlier to offer her (which cheered her right up) we also offered her some vodka left over from a reception held a few weeks ago. Her day is looking up by the minute!

Edit - Now another of my co-workers started dancing in the middle of the office. It's been quite an interesting day.

This is My Chance!

How do I get in on this??? (Hat tip to someone, but I can't figure out who)


This article highlights a program to teach illiterate adults how to read. I'm blown away by the 14% rate they quote as the percentage of adults who are functionally illiterate and who must face incredible challenges every day just in getting around the city. It actually reminds me a little of being in Israel, since my Hebrew is pretty poor, but in Israel, there is so much English everywhere that it's really not that hard. But, back to the article, I think it's really sad how the educational system fails so many - the article points out that up to 80% of the functionally illiterate are high school graduates. How a student gets through 13 years of school and can't read is beyond me.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007


I remember learning about fugue in an abnormal psychology class I took my first year of being a psych major and finding it interesting that one day a person could wake up, take off and leave their whole life behind (ok, maybe I actually fantasized about doing it once or twice). This article about the neurological basis for such absence of memory and abandonment of life. Check it out.

What Brings You Joy?

Jack posted about what brings him joy and I decided to hop on for the ride. Here's a small list:

- Coffee
- Hearing one of my favorite songs come on my Ipod
- A bright, clear spring day
- Meeting someone who "gets" me
- Sparkly make-up
- Getting a call from a friend I haven't talked to in a while
- Cooking or baking something yummy
- Finishing a great book
- A good night's sleep
- Really laughing
- Just sitting and talking and laughing with a close friend

Ok, maybe more later...

What brings you joy?


146 was the number of new e-mails I had in my office e-mail account since yesterday. Of those 146, two were from legitimate companies and both of those were advertisements. Which leaves me with the number ZERO. That is zero actual, useful, e-mails out of the 146 in my inbox. Those spammers sure are having fun.

What I Learned in School Today

Women who wear make-up earn 20-30% more than women who don't. That's all the incentive I need!

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Rabbi Gottlieb Addresses Sexual Abuse

Ezzie beat me to it, but thank you to SaraK for sending me this link to the speech that Rabbi Dovid Gottlieb of Baltimore's Shomrei Emunah gave in reference to sexual abuse in the Orthodox Jewish community. The speech is excellent, and I'm very sorry to have missed it. Please read it, it definitely worth the time.

I'll Pay You

to steal the machine that is drilling into the bedrock on the lot next to my office. I'll pay whatever I determine my sanity is worth, because the machine is about to take my sanity along with all of my co-workers (whatever of our sanity is left anyway).

The horrible banging drilling machine looks similar to this:

If you can manage to make it disappear, you can name your price, and have my eternal gratitude.

Commuting Adventures

Yesterday, because of the massive amounts of water that had poured down on New Jersey, our bus driver decided to take the scenic route to Port Authority, which entailed us sitting in stand-still traffic for a long time.

Today, our bus broke down. In the middle of our ride, the bus driver pulled us over to the side. He then managed to get some other buses to pull over and we filed off our bus and onto the other ones, which took us to our destination.

I wonder what will happen tomorrow?

Monday, April 16, 2007


Well, it certainly isn't especially elegant and it still needs to be proof-read but I'm done with my paper. Thank G-d.

Best E-mail Ever

Wow! I got a personal e-mail from Muhammed Ali. And he claims to also be Mustafa Junior! And he wants to give me lots and lots of money! Can you think of a more perfect e-mail to receive?

The Extent of Evil

This article seems to find some kind of hope in knowing that people can be made to do evil acts. I don't see it that way at all. I find the experiments described evil and horrible, and they scare me because, maybe naively, I do like to think that people are good and these kind of experiments show that with the right influence (and it doesn't seem to take that much), most people can be convinced to hurt others, without even receiving reward for it. I don't see much hope in that.

One Small Thought on Yom Hashoah

I missed most of the posting for Yom Hashoah due to my focus (or lack thereof) on my paper yesterday. This post from Jameel struck me when I saw it earlier though. In looking at the picture of the great synagogue, it struck me how Budapest must have been a place full of a rich, vibrant Jewish community. And now it's not. Because of hate. And it made me wonder what rich, vibrant Jewish community that is currently around, won't be in another 100 years.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Rainy Rainy Day

I left my apartment this morning at 10:30 to buy an ink cartridge for my printer. Since then, I haven't been out, not even to go downstairs and do laundry (because I have a sneaking suspicion that the basement is flooded. I did write a lot of my paper, and I made dinner, so it's not a waste of a day. Oddly enough, I'm not bored and haven't been at all as I watched the hours roll by, surprisingly speedily. The sound of the rain on the roof is kinda soothing, I like it. But I have to admit that I'm glad it's not been a thunderstorm all day long, that would have been scarier up here. We don't have thunderstorms so much in New Jersey, at least not like in Alabama, I kinda miss them a little. The lightning is cool. Here's something else cool.

Edit - That's funny. It just started thundering and lightning out. Weird.


Thanks to Neil for posting a bunch of lyrics inspired by this very wet day and inspiring my LOTD during one of my study breaks (yes, it was a break, I've actually been working pretty hard).

Today's LOTD are a haunting, beautiful melody that I remember from years back and are now stuck in my head.

Joni Mitchell
The Circle Game

Yesterday a child came out to wonder
Caught a dragonfly inside a jar
Fearful when the sky was full of thunder
And tearful at the falling of a star
Then the child moved ten times round the seasons
Skated over ten clear frozen streams
Words like, when youre older, must appease him
And promises of someday make his dreams
And the seasons they go round and round
And the painted ponies go up and down
Were captive on the carousel of time
We cant return we can only look behind
From where we came
And go round and round and round
In the circle game

Sixteen springs and sixteen summers gone now
Cartwheels turn to car wheels thru the town
And they tell him,
Take your time, it wont be long now
Till you drag your feet to slow the circles down
And the seasons they go round and round
And the painted ponies go up and down
Were captive on the carousel of time
We cant return we can only look behind
From where we came
And go round and round and round
In the circle game

So the years spin by and now the boy is twenty
Though his dreams have lost some grandeur coming true
Therell be new dreams, maybe better dreams and plenty
Before the last revolving year is through
And the seasons they go round and round
And the painted ponies go up and down
Were captive on the carousel of time
We cant return, we can only look behind
From where we came
And go round and round and round
In the circle game

Good Things Come to Those Who Procrastinate?

Why does it seem like it's always the last article I manage to find and read that gives me the information I could have used at the beginning of my research? When I finally got desperate enough to go out and buy an ink cartridge for my printer (instead of waiting until I'm at work to print stuff) so I could print out one last article, I find that that one last article held a LOT of the information I had been looking for all along. Argh. Ok, back to my paper.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

New Word

Or so I thought until I checked with Google. This Shabbos, I coined the term "Masculinism" in response to feminism. Apparently, Wikipedia has the whole "official" story, but basically, my Shabbos hosts and I (who sometimes actually read this blog and always seem quite amused by the whole blogging thing) decided that masculinism is for those men who desire to do the traditional work of women, such as cooking and clearing the table. I'm all for this new movement and think it should be put in place immediately. Anyone who wants to join me in promoting it is welcome to send me an e-mail and we'll have the press release available shortly.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Ooooo, ahhhhh

I'm totally making a date take me to see this...

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Egyptian Dating

I'm watching the news (because my tape of Grey's Anatomy didn't work :( (actually, maybe it's not the news, I'm not really sure what I'm watching, it could be some newsmagazine) (what was that in my previous post about lack of focus?) and they are showing a feature on Egyptian dating rituals and about the fact that in their culture, sex is not discussed before marriage and therefore many couples go into marriage with very little sexual knowledge, which is really causing some problems. Sounds like they could use some kallah classes (classes for Orthodox Jewish women who are engaged to be married to teach them about the laws of "ritual purity" which includes a lot of information about sex).

Female Sperm Donors

My rarely commenting friend sent me this article about the prospect of bone marrow being developed into sperm (don't ask me how they do it, too complicated for me to have a clue). This is great news for lesbian couples who don't want a man to have any part of the DNA of their children. Bad news is that it would only produce male children. It's a weird concept, almost seems like doctors are trying to play God.

Why I Call This the Call-Waiting Blog

I'm really trying to remind myself that we each are given what we need, what's best for us, despite what we may think. That, hopefully, I'll be able to look back and say, "Oh, right, that's why." If I look back at many things, I do see it. But there are those elusive moments and events and people that I just can't make sense of, at least not yet. Maybe in the future. Maybe not.

Completely unrelated (or maybe not), I'm having massive trouble focusing. I'm supposed to be studying. Obviously, I'm not. I was hiding out in the law school cafeteria and there was a guy there whose voice was driving me up the wall. Of course he kept talking. So I left. (I always feel like someone's going to kick me out of there anyway for not being a law student, like my guilty conscience holds a sign over my head pointing to me as not belonging there. But what can I do? It's the only place they sell kosher food.)

On the bright side, I've decided that at the close of the semester, my hair is going to be treated to professional highlights signifying both my being done with school for the year and the beginning of summer. If I make it there. I'm a little stressed out.

Ok, onto the next thing that my non-focusing brain decides. Later.

Edit - from PostSecret -
"Every single person has at least one secret that would break your heart. If we could just remember this, I think there would be a lot more compassion and tolerance in the world"


My co-worker was pondering which came first - the phrase "That's baloney" or the meat. A quick search on wikipedia gives us the answer - the meat (and we all know that all information on the Internet is for sure true). Whatever the truth is, it did make me wonder what it takes to turn a personal catch-phrase into an accepted slang term, even becoming the first definition at dictionary.com. Does it take teaching the catch-phrase to all your friends, encouraging them to tell all their friends and so on? Could you start it on a blog? Insert it into a movie or TV show and watch its popularity go from there? Or does it take some elusive popularity boost and advertising pitch in order to gain its acceptance in the lexicon of American or even international language? One thing is for sure - you must start with a good phrase. Hmmm...

Astronaut Dreams

I totally want to sign up for this mission.


Go nominate your favorite blogs for the Jewish and Israeli Blog Awards! I think you have a week for nominations.


Artwork of the Day almost comes to you from my favorite artist, Van Gogh, but when I was searching for a piece of artwork by him, I found this painting, titled "Van Gogh's Roses" by Susan Klein, and I just had to share. Enjoy!

Kurt Vonnegut Dies

The author of many dark novels, Kurt Vonnegut, died last night. I wasn't a huge fan of his work, because they were so dark, but I must admit that he was original.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


Was just glancing over this article from the New York Magazine about the very high number of "young adults" who go uninsured, especially in New York, due to the high costs of insuring themselves and the lack of availability of insurance from many employers of the jobs people move to NY for. I had to go six months (I think) without insurance when I started my job, and it caused me a slight feeling of dread, just in case, though thankfully, I managed to stay healthy. But the thought of going without insurance for an unknown period of time, with no end in sight, is scary and dangerous and, unfortunately, probably something that many people can't really do anything about.

Artwork of the Day

My rarely commenting friend sent me the website for Jim Warren's artwork and I find his stuff to be very cool. This is my favorite from the site:

Back to Life

So, I was welcomed back to work this morning by a construction crew that has been drilling into the bedrock in the lot right next to our office all morning long. The sweet sound of a jackhammer has been melodiously making music since I got here this morning. Awww, it's good to be back at work.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Targeted Educational Programs

Very interesting article about new programs that school districts are using that target black males in order to make attempts to raise their achievement levels in school. Their is some backlash, saying that these targeted programs are negative because of the stigma placed on those students in the programs, but I personally think they are on track - you have students who have demonstrated their lack of capability in achieving in school, for various reasons. I think it's absolutely called for to now take them by the hand and try to lead them back on path.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

The World is an Oyster

I was talking to my mom and this was the piece of advice she gave me. "The world is an oyster." When queried, she admitted that she had no idea what that meant. I offered the suggestion that she might have made the phrase up. Has anyone else ever heard it and do you have any idea what it means?

Bits and Pieces

Some interesting articles and links I've come across this morning when I really should be doing research for my paper that's due way too soon:

From the NY Times, an article about the phrase "Melting Pot". In thinking about the idea of the melting pot, I'm not sure that America has become the envisioned idea - yes, Americans definitely engender a mixture of races, religions and cultures, but have we become one? That I don't think has happened, at least not yet.

This article about the changing face of the Charedim in Israel, who, despite their attempts to be unaffected by modernity, are watching it creep in regardless, though in their own way.

This post by Jewish Atheist quoting Einstein's ideas about G-d, which I found very interesting. Reading his ideas leaves me wondering (and this is something that I've wondered many times over the years) why so many scientists are so insistent on there being no G-d. Because to me, when you get more of a realization of the vast, amazing and incredible complexity of the universe, it becomes much more difficult to deny completely. Einstein seemed to feel the same way.

This article at Israel National News about the detrimental effects that sexual harassment cases are having on the Israeli army. The lengths that officers are having to go to avoid these accusations and the fact that they view the accusations as payback for reprimands is sad.

This post written by a "29-year-old college senior" (I can almost relate to that one) about the different personas one can have in their writing and in person, and one's ability to be more real in the blogosphere than in person. I've definitely found this to be the case with some of the bloggers that I've met in person, and maybe even a little bit for myself.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Artwork of the Day

This is the picture on my calendar for April. I just like it and decided to share. Big fan of Picasso. Enjoy!

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Education Articles

Just a couple more articles from the NY Times that I found interesting, both related to education.

The first, regarding the record number of college applications received by colleges, especially the top tier schools this past year, resulting in an incredible rejection rate, with students offering perfect GPAs and SAT scores not being accepted at those top schools. It reminds me a bit of my college application days, and waiting for letters of acceptance and offers of scholarships. I only applied to three colleges, and was accepted at all of them, but none of them were Ivy League.

The second, about a school district that is lacking in diversity, and what should or can be done to remedy this problem to rebalance specific schools in order to make them reflect the overall racial make-up of the district. It's an interesting debate about whether forced diversity should be in effect, and one that I'm not completely certain of the answer. It reminds me of a wealthy school district near where I grew up who actually refused federal funding in order to keep their schools from forced diversity.

Muslim Fashion Difficulties

Interesting article in the NY Times about the difficulty Muslim women have in finding modest clothing in regular stores, as well as the difficulty in balancing the desire to be fashionable and fit in with the desire to follow religious strictures of modesty. I find the article particularly interesting for two reasons. The first is just the solidarity I feel for them - I certainly know how difficult it sometimes can be to find the appropriate attire in mainstream stores. The second reason is because I recently started reading the book "Reading Lolita in Tehran," which I am finding extremely interesting. More on that one later.

Mind Reading

My rarely-commenting friend sent me this fascinating article about mind-reading computers. I have such mixed feelings about it because, on one hand, I see the amazing advantages to having technology like this and as a neuropsych enthusiast, I would LOVE to be the scientist doing this research. On the other hand, I think it would be pretty creepy to be the subject of such experimentation and to have scientists able to know what decisions I want to make without even asking me. But it's very cool to see how far we are coming in regards to understanding the amazingly, phenomenonally complex brain.


Just a few quick reflections from the first days of Pesach:

- My most recent reflection is that my mind is gone and my landlord is super-nice. I forgot to pay my rent before I left for Baltimore. I called my landlord to profusely apologize and he told me not to worry about it, to have a Chag Sameach, and to put the check in the mail when I got back. Way nice.

- I miss Baltimore. When I arrived at my hosts for the seder, where I have gone for the last five years, I was greeted with a welcome of "It wouldn't be Pesach without you here." It really touched me. It wouldn't be Pesach for me without being there.

- There are people in life who are super smart, super accomplished, and super confident. Some of them make me feel really inadequate and some of them don't. And I can't quite figure out the distinction.

- It's hard to fit everyone in when you're visiting for a few days, but I did my best.

- My friends kids are getting really big. But I like it because I can understand (most) of what they are saying now.

- I had a really hard time drinking all that wine this year. But...I usually can't sleep well after drinking and this time I didn't have a problem.

- I was sorry to leave Baltimore last night. But it was kinda nice to be back in my own place.


It's April, Pesach, it was 80 degrees out the other day and I just looked out the window of my office to see snow falling. The world has gone nuts.


This was one I listened to on my drive home last night, a long-standing favorite to sing to:

She's So High
Tal Bachman

She's blood, flesh and bone
No tucks or silicone
She's touch, smell, sight, taste and sound

But somehow I can't believe
That anything should happen
I know where I belong
And nothing's gonna happen
Yeah, yeah

'Cause she's so high...
High above me, she's so lovely
She's so high...
Like Cleopatra, Joan of Arc, or Aphrodite
She's so high...
High above me

First class and fancy free
She's high society
She's got the best of everything

What could a guy like me
Ever really offer?
She's perfect as she can be
Why should I even bother?

(Repeat Chorus)

She comes to speak to me
I freeze immediately
'Cause what she says sounds so unreal

But somehow I can't believe
That anything should happen
I know where I belong
And nothing's gonna happen
Yeah, yeah
Yeah, yeah

Monday, April 02, 2007

Chametz Burning

My wonderful, gracious host and I went to the Baltimore chametz burning this morning. I had never been before - it was quite an experience, very cool. There were about a ton of people there, all hovering over the flames and now I smell like burning bagels - yum. Good thing I still have a shower ahead of me. We came up with a question though - why do we burn the chametz? Why not just throw it away?

Desperate for Family

Some people are really desperate to trace their roots and will stop at nothing short of a DNA test, sometimes from corpses, to find them. Interesting or weird?

Sunday, April 01, 2007


I've spent the past couple days with my friends from Baltimore - like old times. I've seen my friends' kids who have grown up so much and while I didn't believe it possible, have gotten even cuter. I've spent time with good friends who I can really talk to and connect with and who encourage me and inspire me. I had a man yell across a parking lot to me late at night wanting to "get to know" me. I visited my family who lives here and got caught up with them. It's nice having family around. It's weird, cuz it's like home here, but not really. Hopefully, maybe, I'll get to move back one day. Anyway, one more day, less than 24 hours until Pesach and our metaphysical, spiritual freedom. Chag Sameach!