Thursday, March 18, 2004
brain squeeze
So yesterday wasn't my best day, in the end. I had to work both jobs, making it a really long day, and for whatever reason The TV Network Gods decided to move Survivor to Wednesday night instead of Thursday night this week (of course they'd have to move it to the one night I'm working this week). My beloved neighbour across the hall from me, Princess Blondie, agreed to watch the show with me when I got home from work (since we always watch it together on Thursday nights). So I set my vcr to tape it for later. Long story short, I set the vcr for the wrong day, and neither of us got to watch the show. I felt bad that she had been nice enough as to wait for me, and I screwed up. And I was pretty bitter coz I had been looking forward to the show all friggin' day. *sigh*

An interesting thing happened at the dive shop I work at; last night when I was working I was talking to a customer for a while when he finally noticed my necklace. It's sort of a 3D Star of David (seen in this pic, on the left) and it's one of the few necklaces I wear without too much worry when out in public (hey, just because I'm a proud Jew, doesn't mean I am always comfortable advertising my religion). The reason I like this one is because anyone who isn't a Jew tends to think it's just a pretty star, but a Jew knows what it is. Anyway, this guy asked me if it was a Star of David I was wearing and for a moment...I actually hesitated in responding. It was weird, and I surprised myself. Maybe it's because lately there has been a rash of anti-semitism in the Toronto area in which 13 Jewish homes had swastikas painted on them, or maybe because recent world events have me a bit unnerved. The man saw me hesitate and he quickly reassured me that he was Jewish too, to put me at ease. For a moment I felt a little embarrassed that I had hesitated like that, but more than anything I was shocked at how worried I was about "outing" myself to a stranger. But after that we had a really nice talk about Israel and how he wants to go visit family he has there, since he's never been. Afterwards I was happy he had come in...he and his wife were a very nice couple to talk to. :-)

And speaking of nice necklaces, I got a really nice one in the mail from Rehovot, Israel. I bought it from a very talented artist on eBay, and I encourage anyone who is interested to check out her work here. Thanks, Jessica! I love the necklace!

What else? Well, perhaps this is a place to talk a bit more about Israel. Heck, I'll even tie it back to Ireland to keep in the spirit of yesterday's St. Patrick's Day celebrations. Despite having only a few hundred Jews in it's midst, Ireland is turning into one of Europe's greatest supporters of Israel. Strange, but true! (hey, I'm not gonna question it...Israel needs all the support it can get). Check out more on it here.

Also, I found a great article on Israpundit today. It touches on the very sensitive issue of media bias when it comes to the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, and does so with some tongue-in-cheek humour. One of the greatest grievances Jews have with the media is how the Palestinians are labelled. It's never as "terrorists", despite the fact that their goal is often to instill terror with their murderous efforts to blow up buses and ports. Instead they are often called "militants" or "activists". The question is....why IS that? How is what they do any different than what the terrorists in Madrid did? (and do you know of any other countries in the world who have had to resort to THIS??) Here are few amusing yet telling looks at the criteria for labelling someone a terrorist, according to this article:

The CNN-BBC-LA Times-Washington Post Handbook for How to be an Activist
From steven plaut

1. Murdering people makes you a killer or a terrorist. But if those murdered are Jews then you are an activist. You might also be a militant.

2. Crashing jet planes into buildings makes you a terrorist. But attempting to shoot down civilian planes landing in Israel makes you an activist.

3. Placing large bombs on trains in Madrid makes you a terrorist, but placing bombs on Israeli buses full of children makes you an activist.

4. Blowing up a nightclub in Indonesia full of Australians makes you a terrorist. But mass murdering Israeli children makes you an activist.

5. Snipers shooting innocent people in Virginia are terrorists. Snipers shooting Jews in the West Bank are activists.

6. People trying to ram soldiers with trucks and cars are generally terrorists unless the soldiers in question are Jews.

For the rest of this article/handbook go here. It's amusing, yet troubling. For actual examples of this problem in the media click here; it outlines the problem, citing real examples from the press, links and all.

Ok, that's enough Israel education for you guys today. As for me, I am taking it easy tonight. I came home from work very early today and spent the afternoon in bed with a migraine. The headache is gone now, but I still feel like I have a headache hangover (or migraine residue, as I sometimes call it).

I'll leave you with one last link, and this one is an amazing one. This is a dog and it's owner doing a dance routine to a song from the movie Grease. I have never seen such a well trained dog in my life (link via Meryl). Enjoy.