Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Purim 5767: March 3, 2007

It's official.

It will once again be my honor to DJ the Richter Brothers Purim Party. This year they are partnered up with Adam Smoler.

The suggested donation is $20, and proceeds will go to The New Israel Fund and the Friends of the Israeli Defence Forces- Israel's friends in War and Peace.

I will prepare a list of requestable songs, and I promise to be nice this year.

El Taller: 2710 Broadway, 3rd floor;
103rd & Broadway, New York, NY
Saturday, March 3, 10:00pm


It seems that the existence of the world, the global economy and national security all rely on Jewish Communal Workers being in their offices at all times. This morning when I called the general number at work, the recorded message said, "Due to the weather conditions, the organization's building will open at 10:00."

10:00??? Every school in the area has a Snow Day. We have a Snow Hour. The agency has remote desktop and we have the ability to access Outlook and voicemail from home. So I really don't understand why we should be forced to brave the road conditions or risk loosing a personal day. Then again, I'm not the chief here, I'm just an Indian. Or should I say I'm not the general, I'm just a soldier. (Yeah. That's better, more PC, and more accurate.)

So I got all bundled up with boots and galoshes, and even wore jeans, but I brought slacks with me, since jeans are not allowed according to the dress code. I decided to take the local roads to work because of the hazardous road conditions. There were so many accidents on Route 80 that the traffic reports didn't say where they were, they just reported how many. I stopped for gas on my way to work. "Fill it up. Regular. Credit" I reached into my pocket to take out my debit card, and realized that my wallet was not there. Two pairs of pants but no wallet! In all the confusion, I left my wallet at home. So I drove back, picked up my wallet and started out again.

I got to work at, like 11:30. I trudged in like Mennu of the North with my puffy coat, ratty scarf and golden shades. The woman at the reception area said the building was closing at 3:00. Good thing I was there!

When I got to my desk, I saw that I had a voice mail message. It was my colleague from Rochester. He said they had 27 inches of snow, and counting, but they still had to come in to work. Every school was cancelled in Rochester, but he had to be at work. It sounded very familiar to me. He was just calling around to see who else was in the same boat. He told me that they had a meeting yesterday to discuss whether they should cancel programs or not. I think it’s a no brainer: parents who send their children to these programs don’t think, “Gee! We really should bring little Shmully to the program even though there’s 27 inches of snow…”

Anyhow, I found an email in my box from one of the human resources demons saying that there’s a lunch meeting at 12:30. At first I thought, “Lunch! I like lunch. How nice!” Then I thought about what the possible subject could be, and that caused me concern. So I decided that I should put on the slacks that I brought so I wouldn’t be in violation of the dress code. As I finished putting on my pants, and was about to head to the lunch thing, one of my colleagues told me that our agency wasn’t invited for lunch. And to think, I changed my pants for nothing!

Then my boss rolled by my office and tells me to hang up my coat. “Joker,” I thought. I haven’t had a coat hook since my second day at the job. I sent repeated requests to facilities for a coat hook, all of which were unheeded. My boss even sent a few. But today, finally, after six months of being on the job, I got my coat hook!

“Happy birthday,” my boss said. I jumped out of my chair to see the shiny new coat hook on the back of my door.

As I hung up my coat, I had a kind-of-Borat-like moment. “Ha ha ha. Look at me. I am hanging my coat up on a coat hook! Look how fancy I am! Just like royalty! The king and his coat hook! It’s nice.”

To anyone who was brave enough to drive to work today, I salute you! Have a safe ride home!

Monday, February 12, 2007

Rum Balls

The rum balls made by Stephanie Soffer were very popular this weekend. Here's how you can make your own.

Rum Balls
  • 1 box graham crackers, crumbled
  • 1 stick margarine, melted
  • 1 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup cocoa
  • 3/4 cup water
  • rum - according to your taste (recipe calls for one capful but I just poursome in; then I add more; and then even more)
  • Mix all together.
  • Roll into balls.
  • Roll in sprinkles, coconut flakes,powdered sugar, chopped nuts, etc.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Glaze for the Turkey

I made a turkey breast for shabbos machvis.
Here's the method:
  • Buy an Empire frozen turkey breast (5.5-6lbs) and defrost in the fridge for 48 hours.
  • Preheat oven to 385.
  • Remove the skin and any other nastiness from the turkey breast.
  • Cover the exterior of the bird with margarine and then sprinkle with salt and fresh cracked pepper.
  • Stick in the oven for forty five minues.
  • DON'T PEEK! 45 minutes won't cook the whole thing.
  • Make the glaze: mix 1/4 cup of molasses; 3 tablespoons of mustard; and a shot of bourbon.
  • After the breast has been in the over for 45 minutes, remove from oven, close the oven door (keeping the oven hot) and paint the bird with the glaze.
  • Return to the oven. Repaint every 15 minutes until the turkey has cooked for over an hour and a half or until a thermometer indicates that the interior of the turkey breast is 170°F.
  • Remove from the oven, gently cover with foil and let cool for at least two hours before slicing.
  • Serve with carmelized onions, and a variety of mustards.

Steve Guns

A friend of mine recently sent me this article from Der Spiegel:
Life Insurance for Palestinian Suicide Bombers

As the bus began to pull away, a man ran up to the side and the bus driver stopped and opened the door. The man was wearing the black suit and skullcap of an observant Jew. But his beard was too thin. Seeing a bulge underneath the man's jacket, Averbach quickly stood up and headed toward the stranger. But Bassam, disguised as a devout Jew, was quicker than Averbach and he ignited his belt of explosives.

Bassam died and Averbach survived seriously injured for life.

The article is about the trail of money that pays the families of suicide bombers. They incorrectly refer to Steve as "Weapon Steve" instead of "Steve Guns." I suppose it has something to do with the translation to or from German. It's four years after the incident and Steve remains paralyzed.

One of these days I will edit my original story about Steve so that it's more coherent, but you can download the story here.