Category: Personal

My passport is expiring in a couple of months and to be on the safe side in case of emergency I’m renewing shortly. When I was younger I used to admire each stamp in the book as a badge of honor, a symbol that I’ve “been there” and “done that” and the official seal was more meaningful than key chains or cheap t-shirts. Today I’m looking over all the stamps in the past 10 years and remembering where I was not just in terms of geography but even existentially. Who was I? Why did I go to these places? Who was I with at the time? are all questions which keep rushing back, filling my head with pictures as if I’m scrolling through Picasa.

So more for my own personal record than anything else, here’s a summary of my last 10 years of international travel.

Personal

Thoughts and Ruminations on Turning 33

For my annual birthday post it’s hard for me not to look back to the previous year especially in accounting for a whole slew of personal issues. Far from being a “year of the heart” as I had hoped, at times I look back on 32 as being a “lost year”, at least emotionally. Perhaps I’m still feeling the effects of the breakup or the regular stressors of being a rabbi, or just good old fashioned insecurity.

Typically this isn’t the way one wants to feel on one’s birthday, but I’d like to suggest that there is an important lesson – at least for myself – in turning 33.

Personal

Anyone who has heard my sermons knows that I like spicing up my talks with various non-religious references from popular and obscure culture. Perhaps my best/worst line was the following…

Personal Shtick

Preface
As part of a New Year’s intellectual cleaning, I came across this post which I had intended to post on my birthday. This was actually the first year I didn’t post anything since I started YUTOPIA nearly 6 years ago. As for many people, past year has not been the easiest for me on multiple personal levels. While I will not elaborate on most here, the year is ending with me coming out of a long relationship and reentering the tumultuous waters of Jewish dating. This recent emotional adjustment, though unpleasant, has been a motivating factor for reevaluating and revising the thrust of the overdue post below.

Personal

Dear Loyal Readers,
I recently decided to cash out my credit card points from my American Express card to move. In my program each point is worth 1/2 a cent. As you could imagine most of the items in their store are “overpriced” at that ratio, but through their “Giving Express” program, AmEx allows for donating points at a rate of 1 cent per point to any charity in the GuideStar database.
I currently have 8,000 points left which translates into one $50 donation and three $10 donations.1 The question is, where should it go?

Personal

Dear Loyal Readers, Over the past few weeks I’ve hinted at some more changes going on in my life and for the usual reasons of busyness I haven’t gotten around…

Personal

What would you do if you were stuck in one placeand every day was exactly the same, and nothing that you did mattered? — Groundhog Day It’s that time of…

Personal

Well, one bit of good news since the last post is that my recent thesis draft passed as is! I still have some minor changes to make like some silly…

Personal

Many months ago, I was passing though the Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle and saw that not only was there something called “Jazz at Lincoln Center” but that Dave…

Culture Personal

Identifying divine providence or hashgacha, if we’re being honest, is a tricky endeavor. Virtually any event can be attributed to free will just as easily as it can be to…

Personal