More Miscellaneous Than You Can Shake a Stick At
Yesterday, Florida's Sun-Sentinel featured a terrific article titled "Meat Scandal Gives South Florida Jews Kosher Dilemma." The article begins by telling the story of an 83-year-old Jewish woman who writes columns promoting vegetarianism in her community newsletter. The article ends with a great quotation from Rabbi Barry Silver: "The rationale behind keeping kosher has always been to spare the animal pain. The practices now are the opposite: They are causing the animals to suffer. If you want to be true to your Jewish beliefs, you would become a vegetarian."
Natalie Portman References AgriProcessors at the Oscars
Jewish actors Natalie Portman and Ben Stiller presented an award at the Oscars together on Sunday. Stiller was imitating and ridiculing Joaquin Phoenix, which led Portman, a vegan, to say, "You look like you work at a Hasidic meth lab." JTA's The Telegraph explains, "Portman was likely referring to the May 2008 federal raid on the Hasidic-owned and operated Agriprocessors meat processing plant in Postville, Iowa, in which federal agents alleged to have discovered, among other infractions, a facility for producing methamphetamines."
NYU Student Takeover
On Friday, I blogged about the NYU student takeover. As of press time, it appears that 18 students will be suspended for the duration of the week and then return to classes on Monday. NYU's student newspaper noted that one student organization has already left the Take Back NYU! coalition and that the animal rights group was considering the same:
One group, the Asian Cultural Union, left the coalition Saturday night, according to a TBNYU spokeswoman. And member group Students for Education and Animal Liberation will likely consider severing its ties with the coalition at its next meeting, co-president Ashleigh Lewis said.
“They started alienating people a while ago,” the CAS sophomore said. “They were being too radical, I think, for a lot of people’s tastes. What you need to be successful is public support, and I think they lost that.”
Book About the Foie Gras Debate
Mark Caro of the Chicago Tribune has a book called The Foie Gras Wars: How a 5,000-Year-Old Delicacy Inspired the World's Fiercest Food Fight coming out on March 10. The book, which will be released by Simon & Schuster, includes discussions about foie gras feuds in Chicago, California, Philadelphia, and Israel. Click here to read my 2005 post about what's wrong with foie gras from a Jewish perspective.
Air Guitar Judaica
Dates for regional competitions for the U.S. Air Guitar Championships will be announced soon. Check AirGuitarUSA.com for updates. The competitions have grown a great deal since 2003. On Thursday, the USAG blog quipped that "when they first started this thing the best my bosses could do was get a handful of USAG dradles donated from the 92nd Street Y. Look at us now!"
I recently discovered that my last name was being used in online fan-fic stories. Digital Tunnel recapped my amusing back-and-forth with the author. Click here to read his account; do a search on the page for "Croland."
Is the Bride Vegetarian? Is the Groom Jewish?
Jewish singer Lisa Loeb got married last month. Loeb has been rumored to be vegetarian, but The New York Times reported that Loeb "considers herself to be a 'vegequarian' — which she defines as a vegetarian who eats fish, and, in her case, sometimes a bit of bacon." The Times noted that her wedding to Roey Hershkovitz included a Jewish ceremony with a rabbi. Jewcy debated whether the groom is a member of the tribe:
He Might Be a Jew Because ...
He Might Not Be a Jew Because ...
- He is from Cliffside Park, NJ.
- His last name is Hershkovitz.
- From the announcement: "That December they dined with friends on the Upper West Side, followed the next day by "a nondate" lunch date for two in Greenwich Village, where Ms. Loeb said they shared "a Fluffernutter" and also a concoction of peanut butter, banana, honey and bacon called'an Elvis.'"
- Also from the announcement: "They began spending a lot of time together. But the next spring, both agreed that their timing was off. “Over a sad shrimp quesadilla, we realized that we really needed to break up,” Ms. Loeb said. “We were in different places in our lives.”