May those of you who observe it have a meaningful fast.
403: Listen to the song of the paper cranes... (Cranesong)
( May. 28th, 2012 11:30 pm)
I hope those of you who celebrate it had a great Shavuot, and that Americans in general had a good Memorial Day.

I've been settling into my summer internship well, and it's keeping me busy with worthwhile tasks. (Unlike classes, which often seem to keep one busy with non-worthwhile tasks.) I went ocean kayaking last Thursday, and must say that it's beautiful out there. Hoping/planning to make that a weekly outing. Pictures may follow.

Back when it was an unfinished batch of songs, I linked to a few items from [personal profile] solarbird's Cracksman Betty. And then it grew up and became an album. :D You should go listen, particularly if you like rock, folk, or alternate history tales. (My favorite tracks are "Song for a Blockade Runner" and "Columbia", but YMMV.)
The Festival of Matzos was good, if tiring. The annual reminder of how grains make my life work better is viscerally real and solid once more. I'm currently washing & packing away the Passover kitchenware so that I can go back to my normal cooking habits. (In other words, There Will Be Bread.) Pesach is clearly a skill that I haven't mastered yet.

Notes to Self, for next year:
* Find someplace to stash matzah & peanut butter on campus. You can really do without the extra two pounds of weight.
* Your body doesn't seem to recognize cracker-style matzah as a starch. Stop expecting it to behave as though it did. Maybe stash honey with your peanut butter.
* Can you get KP nutella or equivalent, anywhere?
* Freeze some pizza dough in advance, so that you don't have to wait as long for chametz, at the end.
403: Torah Fandom (Torah Fandom)
( Aug. 8th, 2011 08:00 pm)
Tomorrow is the Ninth of Av, a traditional fast day that commemorates (if that's the right word) some of the set of awful things that happened to the Jewish people over the past few thousand years. If you're observing it, may you have a meaningful fast. (I'm not able to fast for medical reasons, and so will be eating plain, bland foods instead.)

Meanwhile, the secular world moves on. We've got three apartment showings scheduled for tomorrow, of which I hope at least one is acceptable, and willing to take our deposit money. This process is made of Fail, and I want to be done with it.

ETA: Oh, yeah. I'm reminded of how awkward it is to not be fasting when other people are.
403: (The Human Condition)
( Jun. 7th, 2011 03:01 pm)
I couldn't keep breakfast down. Am now very slowly eating plain rice, and drinking gatorade. Shavuot begins this evening - a holiday of rich and delicious dairy foods, accompanied by late-night study. Right up my alley.. except if I'm not feeling better in six hours or so, I'm likely to be stuck at home.
Kitchen kashered for Passover - DONE.

Tomorrow? The cooking, the seder, the falling over afterwards. The sleeping in Tuesday morning.
403: Torah Fandom (Torah Fandom)
( Apr. 12th, 2011 01:10 pm)
Some time ago, [ profile] taldragon asked me "Why Judaism?". I've needed more than a year (IIRC) to chew on the question. Short of an autobiography that I have no plans to write, the best answer I've got is that I'd been standing in the doorway for most of my life, and it was about time to come in.
403: Torah Fandom (Torah Fandom)
( Mar. 20th, 2011 10:31 pm)
Took my dragon shoulder-puppet to shul last night. Confused adults, delighted children. Mission accomplished.
Dear Self,

Please remember that towards the end of the holiday, the menorah belongs in a room with greater air volume and better air circulation than the bedroom. Otherwise, the cheap*, smoky candles are pretty much guaranteed to trigger your asthma.

- Yourself

* They're always cheap, because you need 44 of them for all eight nights, and one candle's smoke is fine, but that of three and up is a problem.
Including near-death-by-traffic experience, this past Friday afternoon.

Up late because I can't turn off my brain. Going to try again soon.
...Before Sukkot is upon us.

This year, I have back yard space. Enough to build a sukkah of my own. Lesson #1 from the construction is, do not assume that the 1/2" diameter PVC pipe will work as well as the 3/4". It won't. Not when you're putting sails tarps on three sides.

Also, Home Despot doesn't sell mosquito netting. Out here. WTF?
..And everyone is posting introspective things that I'd love to have the time to read rather than barely skim. But this is also the second week of classes, and I find myself running around with not quite enough energy and focus to fill all of my near-term obligations, let alone read, write, or think beyond the next hour or two at any given time.
403: Spiral of black and white stones, on a go board. (Spiral)
( Sep. 8th, 2010 06:03 pm)
Rosh HaShannah begins in less than an hour. Services at the nearest synagogue started a few minutes ago (annoyingly enough, they don't actually wait for sunset). After rushing the bike ride home from class, and arriving just now, I don't know if I have the energy to drag myself back out the door again.

It's hard to have the communal-holiday feeling when what I really want is an aspirin and 8h of sleep.
...And it had to be Friday afternoon when I found it. (I must ask myself - is this productivity? The answer is, "I don't know.")

Pirutinski, S. "The terror management function of Orthodox Jewish religosity: a religious culture approach." Mental Health, Religion & Culture 2009, vol. 12, issue 3, p.247-256.

(I can e-mail a PDF to anyone interested.)
403: Torah Fandom (Torah Fandom)
( May. 18th, 2010 07:28 pm)
This evening is Shavuot, and I find myself seven miles and down a mountain from the nearest synagogue. So what am I doing this fine festival eve? Eating cheesecake. :9
Am Jewish now.

ETA: Because there's an image-macro for everything:
403: Cheerful-looking octopus. (Hapalochlaena lunulata)
( Apr. 6th, 2010 08:27 pm)
Here there be pizza!
On 4/20/10, I'm scheduled to become a Jew. I'm excited and nervous and all wound up about it.
403: Torah Fandom (Torah Fandom)
( Dec. 12th, 2009 09:54 pm)
Last year's menorah was made at the last minute, out of plaster of paris. (Some of the pieces didn't survive the move.) This year's is made from wax. Specifically, the cool-looking remains of a much larger candle. It already had about the right shape, and needed very minimal modifications.

ETA: I declare this a Living Candle Sculpture. It keeps getting cooler as wax is added on subsequent nights.
403: A rack of test tubes with the caption "If you're not part of the solution, you're part of the precipitate". (Solution or precipitate)
( Nov. 16th, 2009 10:50 pm)
This afternoon, I picked up half of my order of chemicals for a class project. Half, because the other half had been returned to sender by someone in Lab Recieving. Still waiting on an explanation of how that happened. UPS either can't or won't divert packages in transit. The supplier tells me that they'll ship it back out promptly when it arrives, this time c/o'd to the purchasing manager so that it will hopefully stay here. It will most likely get back to me in two weeks.

This evening, I attended a discussion panel about "Faith and Science". The panelists were a Lutheran minister, a Catholic priest, an imam, and one Hillel staffer + a student who also teaches Jewish Sunday school (filling in for the rabbi, who's in the hospital after an accident involving a barbecue grill; he'll be fine but needs time to heal). Not one scientist. All of the religious leaders in attendance emphasized that their faiths are pro-science, within the bounds of what they consider ethical. (They all knew where they stood on issues like stem cell research and abortion. But animal testing threw them for a loop. Go figure.) I tried to add as much of a scientific perspective as I could from my position in the audience, and was only needed to make a religious point near the end, when the Jewish panelists couldn't give a solid answer to the animal testing question. (I've looked into the matter already because it might become relevant in my career.) On the whole the panel discussion turned out okay. There was the potential to be more than okay, but I'll take what I can get.


403: Listen to the song of the paper cranes... (Default)


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