Friday, March 13, 2009

Why I was never *really* kosher...

I just spent an hour and a half plucking feathers from chicken skin.

Why can't Trader Joe's manage to get all the feathers out before they package their very expensive kosher chicken? Is plucking the feathers yourself part of the kashrut experience? Do they assume that people buying the chicken want to get back to their shtetl roots? EEWW.

Seriously. gross.

Just sayin'.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

I'm not sure where I can find my own spiritual fulfillment when I'm busy creating a space where others can be fulfilled spiritually. I love my job - deeply. It's rewarding, energizing, and inspiring, almost daily. I work with some of the most amazing students I've ever met. I learn from them. I wouldn't trade this job for anything. The only downside is that because I work at Hillel and I work Shabbats, I rarely get to escape the noise of the workweek during a Shabbat service.

There's one student who leads amazing services and when she's here, I can actually be in Shabbat instead of at work. However, she's so good that if I'm going to take a Shabbat off each month, I end up needing to skip hers. I'd like to skip the more challenging Shabbats, but those are the ones where I'm needed the most. It's a dilemma I'm facing.

It's never easy to "pray." It's never easy to silence the week and step into the space between one week and the next. But it's never been this hard before either. I think this is part of the learning process though. Maybe I need to find spaces outside of Judaism where I can experience that peace.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

This is the first time anyone has tried to convert me since high school!

L and I were in the trails behind Natural Bridges today and a couple asked us "Have you girls found Jesus Christ as your savior?" They tried to give us pamphlets, all smiles.

L said "We're practicing Jews, no thanks," and I said "Yeah, I work at a Jewish community center.

Their curiosity got the better of them, and they followed us and ask all kinds of questions, including "Where in Israel are you from?" (Because clearly, all Jews are Israeli). L responded with "Our families are Russian Jews" and we tried to walk away. The guy called out "Just one more question, I'm wondering... What's the difference between Russian and Orthodox Jews?" Huh? 

L said "Russian is the ethnicity. There are Russian Orthodox Jews and Russian Reform Jews and..." At this point, the guy threw up his hands and said "But that's confusing! Russian Orthodox is a sect of Christianity!" and went on to talk about the schism in the Russian church in the 1050s (he explained that he had a college degree in comparitive religions). We finally came to a place where it was clear that we could split off and we started going the other way. 

As we walked off, he cried out one more time: "Are you sure you haven't even condsidered Jesus as your savior?!"

Oy vey!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Looking at cute pictures of puppies may be the only antidote for challenging conversations about the situation in Gaza.