The Week in Jews

ANTI-SEMITISM WITH MUSTARD AND SAUERKRAUT THE NEWS: Hebrew National sponsors Mel Gibson trivia question at Giants’ game. Let me clarify: Gibson is the favorite actor of Giants’ Jewish first baseman Ryan Klesko. That fact was revealed as the answer to … Read More

By / July 27, 2007
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ANTI-SEMITISM WITH MUSTARD AND SAUERKRAUT THE NEWS: Hebrew National sponsors Mel Gibson trivia question at Giants’ game. Let me clarify: Gibson is the favorite actor of Giants’ Jewish first baseman Ryan Klesko. That fact was revealed as the answer to “Who is Ryan Klesko’s favorite actor?” Was it Will Farrell, Tom Hanks, or Mel Gibson? The whole ordeal was sponsored by Hebrew National. [Jewish Telegraph Agency] Isn’t it simply the wrong choice to not go with Will Farrell? Should the famous kosher all-beef hot dog company (slogan: “We answer to a higher authority”) rethink its whoring sponsorships? This could be just one step away from David Duke on the Wheaties box. THE CHATTER: According to the Hot Dog and Sausage Council, a staggering seven billion hot dogs are consumed in the U.S. each year between Memorial Day and Labor Day. I know what you’re thinking. 7 billion isn’t that many. The real shocker is that something called the “Hot Dog and Sausage Council” exists. [Hebrew National] Dot Dead Diary blog on Klesko’s and Hebrew National’s mutual boneheadedness. [Dot Dead Diary] In sort of related news, they have a Jewish Day at Giants’ stadium. Sounds like a blast. YouTube to prove it. [YouTube]



THE NEWS: 13-year-old Jewish yo-yo master performs with a tip jar to raise money for children’s cleft lip surgeries. (And you thought we couldn’t narrow down our article synopses.) [The Jewish Daily Forward] THE CHATTER: If this news story interests you, you might want to check out the virtual yo-yo museum. [Museum of Yo-Yo History…Subtitle: Spinning Through the Ages] What the yo-yo boy’s parents will buy him when he turns 21. [Coroflot]


Q: WHAT’S BETTER THAN JEWISH CONGRESSMEN RAISING MILLIONS OF DOLLARS FOR THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY? A: NOTHING! THE NEWS: First-term Jewish Democrats in Congress raising a ton of cash for the blue-state party. Rep. Ron Klein, a lawmaker from Florida, raised nearly $1.3 million in the first half of 2007, the second highest total posted among the 42 Democratic freshmen, and nearly as much as was raised by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Also doing a kick-ass fundraising job is Kentucky’s first Jewish member of Congress, Rep. John Yarmuth, who totaled $600,000 in the first half of the year. [The Jewish Daily Forward]

THE CHATTER: These Jews are making up for some choice screw-ups from the Dems. A couple months ago Barack Obama came under scrutiny for hosting a $1,000/plate dinner with high-profile guests Allan Houston and Charlie Ward of The New York Knicks, and it wasn’t because the Knicks suck. The problem was that Houston and Ward have been called the “God squad” and referred to Jewish people as “Christ-killers.” Ward said of the Jews, “They had his [Christ’s] blood on their hands.” Barack was none too pleased the star guards dissed the tribe. The Obama campaign gave a written statement to New York Magazine noting that the senator is "pro-Israel" and that Obama "disagrees with the language used and the inaccurate and inappropriate religious references." [Chicago Tribune]


EAT MY TACHTONIM, MAN THE NEWS: The Simpsons movie coming to Israeli theatres. THE CHATTER: How will Simpsons’ humor translate to Hebrew? [The Jerusalem Post] Religion in the Simpsons is a much-studied topic, and a new book by Mark Pinsky explores the gestalt: The Gospel According to The Simpsons: The Spiritual Life of the World's Most Animated Family. Besides the episode in which Bart sells his soul to Milhouse for $5 (Pinsky devotes an interesting chapter to this episode), the whole Simpsons-movie-in-Israel thing reminds me of the “Much Apu About Nothing” episode in which the plot echoes the expulsion of the Jews from Spain during the Inquisition. [The Simpson Archive]


IN PEEING AND IN PRAYER: PENISES TO THE LEFT, VAGINAS TO THE RIGHT THE NEWS: Jewess got this report from North Jersey: A venerable Conservative synagogue in Teaneck, aiming to attract the township's growing Orthodox Jewish population, has begun using a partition to separate men and women during some of its worship services. [North Jersey] THE CHATTER: In “Prayer Behind the Partition” in the Wall Street Journal, Lucette Lagnado tells of her experience attending a segregated orthodox shul as a young girl. Lagnado writes that the purpose of a divider–or "mehitzah," as it is known in Hebrew–is to make sure that men aren't distracted from their prayers. The custom of separate seating dates back to the Second Temple in Jerusalem, when congregants became so lighthearted at a Jewish festival that it was deemed necessary to segregate the sexes. [The Wall Street Journal] In fact, the use of a wall in Jewish culture actually dates back 4.5 million years to one Sunday afternoon when a Jewish caveman became annoyed by his wife’s constant complaining that he spent the whole day watching football. So he constructed a wall and placed her on the other side of it. Its purpose became twofold: no distraction from prayer or football.


LASTLY, Plastic bags are for rabid antisemites. [Treehugger]

In conclusion, it was a bit of a slow week for catchy Jewy news that did not involve violence or almost peace agreements, so, to beef up an otherwise kinda wimpy WIJ, here’s a Jew-free addendum, i.e. The Week in Non-Jews/Often Cooler or Crazier News: Fourth grade math genius calculates a high probability of getting beat up. [The Giant Napkin] Google boss says neckties “constrict circulation to the brain” so tech geeks wear T-shirts. [PC World] In this week’s best use of taxpayers' money, the Bush administration subpoenas Michael Moore. [United Press International] A Navy man who got mad when someone mocked him as a "nerd" over the Internet drove 1,300 miles from Virginia to Texas to burn down the other guy’s trailer. Sweet, sweet revenge. [Yahoo]

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