Perli Pelzig first knew he had talent at the ageof 5, when he would chalk life-size figures of animals on thesidewalks in his native Germany. These figures attracted attentionfrom passers-by, and, not long after, Pelzig was named \"wunderkind\"for his dazzling artistic capabilities.
My mother is 87. Or is it 90? As long as I can remember, I thought that she had been born in 1910, was named Miriam Euffa, and brought here from Kievas a 5-year-old by parents who were educated, and who had been part of what must have been a turn-of-the-century minority: the Russian-Ukrainian Jewish professional class. Now Medicare tells methat her Social Security card lists her year of birth as 1907.
Frankly, I\'m all for it.\n\nBut what about sports? Girls? Humvees and washboard abs? This column\'s supposed to parse the experience of a Jewish Guy in the world. But some guys have called, confused. What\'s all this about singing baby boys to sleep? About tender talks and the salve of toddler hugs? It\'s all very sweet, but, guy, hey guy, they ask, where\'s the testosterone?\n\nFunny. My wife\'s been bugging me about the samething.
There\'s nothing so intoxicating as when a mentor singles you out,shining the warm light of approval all over you. It seems you can\'t throw a cat without hitting a story about Monica Lewinsky, the former White House intern who may or may no thave engaged in untoward relations with President Clinton. We maynever know exactly what transpired between the two, but it has captured the world\'s attention more than any other of the president\'s alleged dalliances with the opposite sex.
Abraham Joshua Heschel said that he prayed for one thing: the gift of wonder. He prayed for astonishment, for the capacity to be surprised. As he wrote, \"I try not to be stale. I try to remain young. I have one talent, and that is the capacity to be tremendously surprised at life and at ideas. This is to me the supreme Chassidic imperative.\"
Underneath the headline were threestories - one dealing with President Truman\'s announcement, one withthe opening hours of Israel\'s War of Independence, and the third withJewish reaction in Los Angeles (\"with a spirit of solemnity,\" wrotethe Times reporter) to the news from the Middle East.
As a rule, you don\'t go to museums to eat. Unless you\'re like me -- someone who, when push comes to shove, prefers great food to great art. I make no apologies: The last time I visited the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, I ate a tasteless, watery and expensive fruit salad in the cafe there. That I remember. What exhibit I was there to see I\'ve long forgotten. It had something to do with famous dead artists.
My brother called the other day and asked whetherI had noticed how many people are putting things behind them andmoving on. \"Does that mean they have no baggage?\" Iasked. \"Well,\" he said, \"either people have no baggage oran invisible semitrailer is following them around.\"
Note to future rabbis: If you want to make a lasting firstimpression with your congregants, nothing beats farm animals on thebimah. Just ask anyone at Temple Adat Shalom in West LosAngeles. It\'s been almost four months since Michael Resnick took overthere, and they\'re still talking about his goats.
Imagine that it is 1940, and Great Britain is fighting Hitler\'s Nazi Germany almost alone. Imagine, further, that an American who loves both America and England and hates the Nazis works in American intelligence and has access to secret files concerning Germany that, for whatever reason, the United States has not shared with Great Britain. This American gives the secrets to England and is caught.
If a Jew yells in Indiana, will a Jew in Los Angeles pay attention?\n\nFor six days in mid-November, 4,400 mostly bright, all intenselycommitted Jews gathered in Indianapolis to wrestle with the toughissues of contemporary Jewish life. And, if you\'re like the bulk ofLos Angeles Jewry, you probably couldn\'t care less.
\nRetired Maj. Gen. Oren Shachor, former Israel Defense Forces chiefintelligence officer, held a field briefing for his subordinateofficers and field operatives last week at Cava restaurant on westThird Street.\n\nActually, it was just an interview with a Jewish journalist.
Hillary and I were saddened to learn of your husband\'s death, andwe extend our deepest sympathy. We hope that the love and support ofyour family and friends will sustain and comfort you during thisdifficult time. You are in our thoughts and prayers.
More news and opinions than at a Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.