Welcome to The New Chainik Hocker. I am your host, the eponymous Chainik Hocker, here to share news, reviews, pretty pictures, and silly opinions with you. Contact me at chainik DOT hocker AT gmail DOT com

Sunday, December 30, 2007


Wow, I haven't posted in, like, two months. And that was only a quicky post to let you guys know about the release of Chainik ver. 2.0

Where to begin?

First of all, I got me a new job at a place I'll refer to simply as Big & Huge Electronics. It's a good job with great pay and awesome benefits and terrific colleagues and if I didn't have to commute 2 hours each way for my ten-hour-long shift life would be totally awesome.

Mrs Chainik and I are slowly getting used to Chainik 2.0. He's loud. Very loud. He has a way of making his displeasure at the world known quit efficiently despite his total lack of a vocabulary, much like Wall Street analyst Jim Cramer. Luckily for the kid, he's been able to stave off a bout of drunken, unfit-parent-initiated neglect by being so cute I could just kill myself. He looks mostly like his mother, except for the enormous Chainik nose, which has been laboriously passed down from father to son from time immemorial, like our hair-trigger tempers and tendency for diabetes. He smiles, though. Yes, everyone has told us that it's just gas, but he smiles in response to stimuli, such as his father smiling at him, tickling him under his chin, and saying things like "you cost more that a used Honda in decent condition, you screaming, eating poop machine!" in a big, smiley, Sesame Street voice. He even laughed at us, twice.

I'll try to update more often, okay?


Sunday, November 11, 2007

It's a boy!

7 pounds, eleven ounces.

51 and a half centimeters.

I'm not too good with the metric system, but I think that 51.5 cm is, like, three parsecs and a hogshead.

He has my nose, poor thing. Kid had a fifty-fifty chance and lost. He did get his mother's ears, though.

I have to get back to the hospital, now.

Man, the miracle of birth is the most disgusting thing I've ever seen.


Thursday, August 09, 2007

I just paid $2.51 a gallon for regular unleaded in Lakewood NJ. Double w00t.


Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Al Qaeda's Newst Recruiter

California Senator Dianne Feinstein recently sponsored an amendment to the 2008 Defense Authorization Bill which would close down the Defense Department’s detention center in Guantanamo Bay and prohibit the practice of rendition, in which prisoners are shipped to states whose interrogation techniques are more, well, direct. The effect of the Feinstein Amendment would be to integrate jihadist detainees into the federal prison system where they would receive further legal protections. Presumably, the good folks at the American Bar Association would rush to the defense of these misunderstood individuals and put up a spirited legal defense in the name of the rule of law.

What in fact the Feinstein Amendment shows is that a significant portion of the American legislative community is dangerously ignorant to even the most fundamental aspects of counter-insurgency warfare. If the Feinstein Amendment passes—which, fortunately, it likely will not—al Qaeda and other jihadist groups would be irreparably strengthened in what would be a cataclysmic abdication of all semblance of rational policy.

Reasonable minds can differ on subjects such as Guantanamo Bay and the legal status of jihadist detainees. The legal community, while misguided, can be patriotic while insisting that greater access to legal resources be provided to detainees. What is not patriotic, nor rational, is granting al Qaeda unhindered access to the ideal recruitment demographic on a permanent basis. The unwavering lesson of every insurgency in history is that prison is the ideal recruitment ground for insurgent factions. Prisoners are necessarily in constant communication with each other, and all it takes is one radical to evangelize the message of radicalism amongst a population which is already at odds with the government.

Simply put, there is no better recruiting ground than prison. Every insurgency—from the IRA famously training and conducting exercises behind British prison bars in full defiance of powerless guards, to the terrible school of French Indo-China, to the FLN radicalizing common Algerian criminals against the French, has directly utilized the unparalleled access that prison provides to convert and radicalize its target demographic. If you put members of terrorist cells in standard prisons, they will recruit more followers. There’s no gray area here: either we want to contribute further to the propagation of jihadist ideology or we wish to isolate the Islamist prophets of doom from the general population—especially the segments which would most receptive to these ideas.

The genius of Guantanamo Bay is that it segregates insurgents from the rest of prison population. Individuals in Guantanamo (with the few inevitable exceptions) are already radicalized and consequently no harm is done in detaining them. However, the minute that radical population is mixed with common inmates, the jihadists will have scored a tremendous victory on a scale far greater than September 11th ever was. If one purposely set out to loose a counter-insurgency, the absolute first thing one would do would be to provide guerrillas the human resources that are the sinews of any insurgency. Senator Feinstein, has, unwittingly, proposed this very thing.


But who's on first?

Chuck Cedar: We're looking for somebody. Longfellow Deeds.
Murph: Wow! Is that's Deeds's first name?
Cecil Anderson: Well, if the Deeds you're referring to is Longfellow Deeds, then yes, that is Deeds's first name.
Murph: Well, I don't know Deeds's first name, maybe it's Greg.
Cecil Anderson: Maybe it's Longfellow.
Murph: Maybe. But I don't know. I know another guy named Greg. You want me to call him up?
Chuck Cedar: No! Thank you. Please. Just tell us where Deeds lives.

Mr Deeds


Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Breaking news:

Big career news for Chainik Hocker? Stay tuned.


Sunday, August 05, 2007

Simpsons Movie Review (extended).

Just saw the Simpsons movie and it was a big bowl of awesome covered in awesome sauce with extra awesome on the side. Go see it.

Spoilery nitpickiness follows:

I guess the writers were so elated at the thought of not having to follow the rules and regulations the FCC imposes on the televised version of the Simpsons, they felt the need to break a rule or two, just because they could. Unfortunately, the naughtiness they come up with seems forced and unnatural and tacked on and unnecessary. It just doesn't fit, aside from Homer flipping a lynch mob the double-barreled bird. Marge utters a mild profanity under extreme stress.

After an extended (and utterly brilliant and utterly Simpsons) sequence in which Bart skateboards in the nude, with various objects shielding our tender eyes from having to view his animated junk, we actually do see the Simpson Family Jewels. Yeah, it was amusing, because the animators played with our expectations, but come on- Bart is a ten year old, after all. I didn't need to see that.

Minor quibbles, really. The movie really adds something to the Simpson world- it isn't just an 86 minute long TV episode. Marge and Homer's relationship evolve, as does Bart's relationship with Homer.

Worth the wait.


Thursday, August 02, 2007

My very pregnant wife is having a craving for cantaloupe ice cream. Does such a product exist? My life may depend on the answer.


Wednesday, August 01, 2007

It's important to cover all possibilities.

Marty McFly: That's right, Doc. November 12, 1955.
Doc: Unbelievable, that old Biff could have chosen that particular date. It could mean that, that point in time inherently contains some sort of cosmic significance. Almost as if it were the junction point for the entire space-time continuum. On the other hand, it could just be an amazing coincidence.

Back to the Future, Part II


Monday, July 30, 2007

Just paid $2.61 per gallon for gas in Lakewood. w00t.


Sunday, July 29, 2007

T3h j00 pix!!!

Just some pictures of Jewish interest I've snapped on my way here and there, mostly with my cellphone.

A kosher pizza store in Lakewood. The sign is vague, ominous, and includes a threat but no specifics- no time or date or even how much more my mushroom and onion on whole wheat is gonna cost. The Department of Homeland Security needs to hire these guys to do PR.
Dougie's parking lot in Woodbourne, New York. The sign, in Yiddish, says 'No Littering'.
'And thou shall eat, and thou shall be satiated, and thou shall bless thy L-rd- and thou shall pay thine tab'. Milk and Honey Bistro, Baltimore MD.
One of these things just doesn't belong here... one of these things just isn't the same.
B.B. King, Marvine Gaye, Eric Clapton, Steppenwolf, James Brown, and... Sisqo. Adding insult to injury, the sign said something like "best music of the 20th Century" (I'm paraphrasing here). WalMart, Howell, NJ.
I'm not sure if this is a sculpture meant to represent the spirit of industry or a pile of crap some contractor left behind by mistake after the building was done. Outside the National Aquarium at Baltimore, Baltimore MD

Okay, those last two had little or nothing to do with Judaism, except that all Jews are snarky wiseguys who have to criticize everything. If you don't like it, get your own blog.


Test post

Testing, testing...

Isn't this cool.


Thursday, July 26, 2007

That's it... the final straw... I *will* not be voting for John F. Kerry in 2004.

Frank J. is back, and on the top of his game!

That quote is fake, of course. The real quote is far, far worse. Mwahahahaahahahahahahahaha.
clipped from www.imao.us

I'm an advocate for politicians using more humor to better relate with the public, but Best of the Web alerted me to a good example of how a complete lack of a sense of humor can make a politician look like a total moron. The Boston Globe did a fluff piece asking famous Bostonians who their favorite Simpsons character is, and here is John Kerry's answer:

KERRY: "Simpson, eh... wasn't he that colored man who stabbed his wife?"

blog it


Thursday, July 19, 2007

Passaic PD vs Passaic Hatzolah

Passaic City officials and the director of a Jewish ambulance service are addressing new tensions that have erupted following a clash with police who attempted to tow an ambulance this week. On Sunday, resident David Kaplan, 25, who founded the local branch of Hatzolah, an international ambulance corps staffed by volunteers in many Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods, confronted police who had ticketed an ambulance parked the wrong way on Reid Avenue. The site is around the corner from Hatzolah headquarters at 243 Van Houten Ave. A group of people congregated in front of the ambulance about 11 a.m. as five police cars and a tow truck arrived at the scene, Kaplan said. The tow-truck operator was unable to move the ambulance because of its size, he said.

Hah. Whaddya wanna bet the cops called the tow truck guy to the scene and the tow truck guy made up some excuse so he wouldn't have to tow a freaking ambulance, because people need ambulances to not die.

Mayor Samuel Rivera said he was on the scene Sunday and thought the ambulance volunteers acted "belligerently" and that perhaps police responded too harshly.

I'd be belligerent too, if someone was trying to tow my piece of vital lifesaving equipment. And, perhaps, the police responded too harshly? If the cops would have summarily executed everyone at the scene and set the ambulance on fire as a warning to others, that would have been way out of line, but just confiscating a volunteer medical unit is, maybe, a little too harsh. Depending on your perspective, of course.

"They were going to be towed because they were parked in a dangerous position," Rivera said.

That dangerous position: parked the wrong way on a one way street, which is something everybody does, even people not driving emergency response vehicles.

Rivera said he met Monday with Kaplan and Paton to try to resolve friction between police and the volunteers. "I'm trying to work with them. My goal is for them to work with our [the city's] EMS," Rivera said, adding that part of the frustration with Hatzolah goes back more than two years.

Which sure sounds like an unbiased statement to me.

In addition, the city has offered Hatzolah use of city EMS headquarters to park Hatzolah's ambulances, but Hatzolah has rejected the city's offer, Rivera said. "They say they like to have ambulances parked closer to the Jewish community," Rivera said.

How dare those uppity Jews want to park their ambulance close to where it's needed! The gall!


Link here.


Wednesday, July 11, 2007

I am taking Mrs Chainik to see Harry Potter and the Gazillion Dollar Opening tonight. I'll try to post a review after.


Monday, July 02, 2007

Good night, funny mouse.

You heard about the Mickey Mouse knockoff that they were showing on Palestinian kids' TV?

A giant black-and-white rodent — named "Farfour," or "butterfly," but unmistakably a Mickey ripoff — does his high-pitched preaching against the U.S. and Israel on a children's show run each Friday on Al-Aqsa TV, a station run by Hamas. The militant group, sworn to Israel's destruction, shares power in the Palestinian government. "You and I are laying the foundation for a world led by Islamists," Farfour squeaked on a recent episode of the show, which is titled, "Tomorrow's Pioneers." "We will return the Islamic community to its former greatness, and liberate Jerusalem, God willing, liberate Iraq, God willing, and liberate all the countries of the Muslims invaded by the murderers."

Yeah, that one.

Well, he's dead now, murdered by those evil Zionist oppressors.

Hamas TV on Friday broadcast what it said was the last episode of a weekly children's show featuring "Farfur," a Mickey Mouse look-alike who had made worldwide headlines for preaching Islamic domination and armed struggle to youngsters. In the final skit, Farfur was beaten to death by an actor posing as an Israeli official trying to buy Farfur's land. At one point, Farfur called the Israeli a "terrorist." "Farfour was martyred while defending his land," said Sara, the teen presenter. He was killed "by the killers of children," she added.


That is all kinds of messed up, right there.

My theory on what happened: Disney's legendary legal department must have caught up with these guys, and they just decided to cease and desist themselves.


Sunday, July 01, 2007

IPhone Nerds!

I was in the mall with Mrs Chainik Friday, just chillaxin. We bought some maternity stuff, and I am just going to have to take my wife's word for it that simply buying normal stuff in larger sizes will not be sufficient.

While we were there, we passed by a group of hippies sitting in lawn chairs in front of the Gymboree. This confused me, as I hadn't heard that Phish was reuniting and playing the Freehold Raceway Mall (which has its own Wiki page? of course it does, what doesn't?). More hippies and nerds of various descriptions lined the walls of the mall. The mystery was solved when I got to the Apple store and remembered about the iPhone (looks like Apple has an employee in charge of editing wiki pages).Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

I went into the Apple Store to look around. I've never been to an Apple store before but I figured it couldn't be very different than any other of the countless computer stores I've ever been in. Boy was I wrong.

Have you ever seen an iPod? It was like that but in retail form. Everything was clean and white and perfectly proportioned and beautifully lit. The bright lights illuminated squeaky clean, helpful, knowledgable, interestingly multiculti staff. I looked at some of the computers there. Did you know that Apple laptops only have one mouse button? How the hell does that work? And the computers look pretty, like desk lamps designed by Frank Gehry. What in the hell? Computers need to look big and clunky and kludgy and functional, like they came out of the boiler room of a Russian submarine. This place looked like Dell had been bought by Ikea.

What a good metaphor. I need to write that down somewhere.

My cellphone is the Motorola Q. It's PC based, with Windows CE (which means it crashes about three times a week, badum-pshh!). It's very awesomely cool, and I get compliments on it wherever I go.

Okay, that last part was a filthy rotten lie. But I still like having a cellphone with an enormous screen and a full sized keyboard and a 1.3 megapixel camera and rotten battery life and the ability to hack into the registry and change stuff.

Mrs Chainik couldn't understand why people would stand in line for a $500 cellphone.

The lonely, misunderstood life of a nerd, I suppose. If only they had girlfriends.

On a related note, some lady in Texas decided to buy a whole big bunch of iPhones so she could sell them on eBay. She got $10,000 in cash and drove to an Apple store, where she paid the nerd who was first in line $800 cash to take his place.

The punchline?

Apple, unlike Sony, placed a 1-per-customer limit on purchases the first day to ensure everyone got one. Mwahahahaha, lady got iPowned. Watch the video here:


Friday, June 29, 2007

What can Brown do for you?

Earlier today, British officials discovered two parked cars filled with explosives in the heart of London. The devises were set to be trigged by cell phone and were placed in high traffic areas such as outside a nightclub. Government sources so far have pegged “international elements” to be responsible for the car bombs.

And so Gordon Brown faces his first great crisis only three days into office as Prime Minister. Two years ago, Tony Blair acted with steadfast resolve and moral clarity when his country was rocked by jihadist terrorism. Today, Gordon Brown must set the stage for how his government—and indeed the United Kingdom as a whole—will react to the forces of jihad in the post-Blair era.

Mr. Brown faces quite a challenge. The Muslim population of the UK is amongst the most radical in the world. According to the left-leaning Guardian periodical, Muslims in the UK are the most anti-western in Europe, and a full ¾ of the Islamic population of Great Britain blames jihadist activity on western disrespect of Islam.

Britain’s liberal immigration laws have allowed radical clerics to preach the doctrines of jihad in London mosques and now the country finds itself swamped with a radicalized population where it is easy to walk into any movie store in Islamic communities and purchase propaganda DVDs from al-Qaeda and other jihadist groups.

Under the leadership of Tony Blair, the United Kingdom was a steadfast ally against radical Islam despite its internal crisis. The attempted bombings of today are clearly a test to challenge the fortitude of Mr. Brown. Gordon Brown is a capable minister and a decent man—but he must meet the challenge presented to him head on and wage war with the forces that have attempted time and again to destroy everything that his society is predicated upon.

The response of the Brown government will be a clear indicator of how the UK will act years into the future. The British people will either retain their stubborn pride and finish the fight or they will slink silently back into the darkness. This is Gordon Brown’s moment. How he chooses to respond is up to him, but he would do well to remember the words of Ronald Reagan:

“During the dark days of the Second World War, when this island was incandescent with courage, Winston Churchill exclaimed about Britain's adversaries, ‘What kind of people do they think we are?’ Well, Britain's adversaries found out what extraordinary people the British are. But all the democracies paid a terrible price for allowing the dictators to underestimate us. We dare not make that mistake again. So, let us ask ourselves, ‘What kind of people do we think we are?’ And let us answer, "Free people, worthy of freedom and determined not only to remain so but to help others gain their freedom as well.”


Wednesday, June 27, 2007

It depends on what the meaning of 'rhetorical' is.

Bats: Do you remember how to hot-wire a car?
Brick: Can the Pope dance?
Bats: Can the Pope dance?
Pepper: My Solly couldn't dance, poor thing- he had varicose veins like a Turnpike waitress.

The Crew


Monday, June 25, 2007

Rudy's Achilles Heel

Everyone remembers the lightning striking the building when Rudy was explaining his... nuanced opinion about abortion, right?

Well, Ann Althouse calls this Kerry syndrome.

There's far more support out there for the merger of politics and religion than the separation of politics and religion. And yet, Giuliani is popular. So was Kerry (up to a point). What's different about Giuliani is that the disjunct between his religion and his politics is also a disjunct between his politics and his political party.

Can a barely religious Northerner get elected President? Conventional wisdom would say no. You have to be either genuinely religious if you're a Republican or you have to pander to the religious freaks if you're a Democrat if you want to get elected. Also, everyone knows only Southerners vote and they only vote for fellow Southerners.

But is it true?

My gut says no. My gut says that people will see Giuliani's convictions and abilities and qualifications, and look at Hilary's lack of convictions (alas) and Obama's lack of experience and substance, and will go Rudy.

Most people, after all, hold competing and contradictory opinions. I, for example, believe that homosexuality is a grave sin and I think the state has no business in the bedroom. I believe that we should give tax cuts to the rich- they create wealth, which creates business, which creates jobs, which creates wealth- and I also believe rich people are jerks who should be shot. I believe that most social services are a waste of taxpayer money and I also believe that many social services are vital. I support the death penalty and oppose abortion. I am glad that Saddam is dead and Chemical Ali has a date with the hangman, and
I am saddened immensely that any human being, anywhere, has to lose his life.
Do I contradict myself? Very well, then, I contradict myself. I am large, I contain multitudes.

As for conventional wisdom-

The enemy of the conventional wisdom is not ideas but the march of events. John Kenneth Galbraith


Havel Havelim #122 is up.

Good stuff, maybe the best one yet. Check out this post from blog-I've-never-heard-of Circus Tent: Money talks at BMG (the other gimmel tamuz)

I was wondering what shaichus a (not the... there is no the) Satmer Rebbe had to the BMG. The comments, as always when you get to any sinas chinam post, are fascinating.


Sunday, June 24, 2007

Meshichists v. Na Nachs

Meron... no place like it.


Friday, June 22, 2007

Movie Review: Big Nothing

I just saw Big Nothing. I picked it up because it stars Simon Pegg, and the back of the dvd looked interesting.

Quick Review: it sucks enormously. If you are on a plane and this is the movie that they are showing, walk out.

Spoilers follow in super secret highlight-o-vision.

Natasha McElhone was completely unbelievable as a small town detective in Oregon. Everyone dies in this super violent crapfest, except it doesn't happen fast enough. I thought it was a comedy, but there are no jokes and very few ridiculous moments, although one character is murdered with one of those enormous lollipops, so that was cool. I thought David Schwimmer doesn't do a half bad job of the former professor with an unbelievable disease and poorly written dialogue.

I want my money back.


Thursday, June 21, 2007

Wedding Legal Fun! I mean, Legal Wedding Fun! Fun Wedding Legal!


How do you become qualified to be an officiant at a wedding? Legally speaking, I mean.

My Google-fu is strong. I found this list of qualifications to be allowed to officiate at weddings, organized by state. Fascinating reading, if you have the time. The common denominator is, you have to be part of the gubmint (either a judge, county clerk, clerk of the court, mayor, councilperson, what have you) OR you have to be some species of religious poobah muckety muck. Most states are quite liberal in their definition of "sky pilot".

Alaska allows a "commissioned officer of the Salvation Army" to preform a wedding. Connecticut specifically states that "marriages witnessed by a duly constituted Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is are valid". Florida lets notary publics marry people. Guam keeps things simple by saying, simply "All ordained clergymen and priests of whatsoever religious faith who are recognized as such by the religious body whose faith they represent".

Hawaii lets members of Congress conduct weddings. Indiana, wanting to outdo Connecticut, recognizes "(6) The Friends Church, in accordance with the rules of the Friends Church. (7) The German Baptists, in accordance with the rules of their society. (8) The Bahai faith, in accordance with the rules of the Bahai faith. (9) The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, in accordance with the rules of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. (10) An imam of a masjid (mosque), in accordance with the rules of the religion of Islam". A resident of Maine can be married in Maine by a lawyer and member of the Maine bar. Nevada allows even those authorized to preform marriages in other states to marry people in Las Vegas if they fill out a form.

New York allows leaders of The New York Society for Ethical Culture to preform weddings, and also I presume to drone on and on about secular humanism and to be as boring as real ministers of actual religions. in Ohio the "superintendent of the state school for the deaf" may preform weddings. In Oklahoma an "ecclesiastical dignitary" must be at least 18 to preform marriages, and Oklahoma is also the only state to refer to "him or her" instead of just "him". Pennsylvania requires that "marriage does require words uttered to establish at that precise time the relationship of husband and wife". South Carolina is the strictest, saying that "Only ministers of the Gospel or accepted Jewish rabbis and officers authorized to administer oaths in this State are authorized to administer a marriage ceremony". In fact, the only state in the union that will let any damn fool preform a wedding ceremony is Vermont, which doesn't appear to have any qualifications at all.

Yet there is no qualifications to actually get married. Maybe some kind of test or classes or counseling would be appropriate and help curtail divorce.

My baby bro got married last night, and my mind wandered during the chuppah. The lesson: when attending a sibling's wedding, charge your camera batteries beforehand. Otherwise, your camera will die and you will get bored and your mind will wander as you try not to die of heat exhaustion. Bonus: my bro's father in law's rebbi came, and at the chassan's tisch we learned that this esteemed individual is actually our third cousin (Jewish Geography ftw). When calling him up for a brocha under the chuppah, he was referred to as the "great uncle of the chassan". Hah.


Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Not a gloss on the Bush Administration at all.

Dusty: Time for plan B. Plan A was to break into El Guapo's fortress.

Carmen: And that you have done, now what?

Dusty: Well we really dont have a plan B. We didn't expect for the first plan to work. Sometimes you can overplan these things.

Three Amigos!


Bored Soldiers near Gaza

Who says Jews can't dance? Well, whoever they are, they're right.


Thursday, June 14, 2007

I've had a tough day, due to lack of drugs.




Murder death kill.

My back is somewhat better, so I stopped taking the Flexeril my doctor prescribed.

And now I want to set people on fire and punch buildings.

I know what I typed. I want to punch buildings right in their smug little cornicing.


A guy cut me off in traffic. So I pulled into the oncoming lane, cut him off, boxed him in, and parked my truck so I could yell at him. Unfortunately, he got away, and I don;t have a gun. Instead, I summoned all my psychic energy and focused all my hate on him, trying to hate him to death.

I don't actually have any psychic powers but tried it just in case any latent psychic abilities chose that moment to manifest themselves.

The guy's head did not explode but I think his car's blue book value depreciated a teeny tiny fraction of a penny, and I'm going to have to settle for that.

Then I went to a pizza store to move a perfectly good camera, just because they decided to move the cash register.

I had my MP3 jammed into my ears, listening to Eitan Katz, in a desperate bid to lower my blood pressure, and also so no idiots could talk to me.

An idiot came up to me, and started talking.

I glowered at him, but he seemed unperturbed, so after about five minutes I took the headphones off and snarled "what?"

"What kind of calzones do you have?"

"I don't work here." I said. I have a drill in my hand and I'm wearing my company's uniform shirt with the name and logo on it, not the pizza store logo. Also, I wasn't wearing an apron.

"But I just want to know what kind of calzones you have!"

I did not leap over the counter and throttle the man in order to keep him from reproducing, but it was a near thing.

Then three more people did it to me- asked me a pizza related question and then argued with me when I explained that I did not work for the pizza store.

I need a drink.


Wednesday, June 13, 2007

That's just insane.

I am incredibly nervous about being a parent. But at least I'll be a better parent than these sickos.

Setting the bar low is the key to success.

Seriously, though, these people need to be beaten with cast iron water pipes.
clipped from www.ajc.com

Investigators found a crying 6-year-old boy tied up in a sweltering car at a suburban restaurant after employees reported seeing a man take the child outside and return without him to finish eating.

Police believe the boy, whose name was not released, was tied up for about 30 minutes while the outside temperature was in the 80s Saturday in Ringgold, Ga., about 13 miles southeast of Chattanooga, Sgt. John Gass said Tuesday.

"He was sitting up in between the two front seats and he was crying," Gass said. "He had a rope tied to one of his ankles. The child was just sweating, just soaking."

The boy's mother, Rachel Gilchrist, 35, and her companion, Raymond Minchew, 61, both of Sandy Springs, Ga., were arrested Saturday and charged with cruelty to children and concealing a weapon. Police found a handgun in the car.

The couple contended the boy had misbehaved, although witnesses at the Cracker Barrel restaurant disagreed, Gass said.

 blog it


Strom Thurmond has it tatooed on his palm, just in case.

Robin Hood: Are you with me- yea or nay!
Villager: Uhh... which one means yes?
Robin Hood: Yea.

Robin Hood: Men in Tights


Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Bush in Albania 2007 - Cheering in Fushe Kruja

Bush gets his watch clipped- watch right about the one minute mark. ZOMG!

Seriously, how drunk/stupid/gutsy do you have to be to steal the watch of The President of the Whole Entire Gosh-Darn United States?


Monday, June 11, 2007

Pulled back. Heavily medicated. Am currently grooving on the pretty colors. Blogging to resume soon.



Thursday, June 07, 2007

The View From the Hellespont

Modern day Turkey stands at a great crossroads. On one side of the Dardanelles, Turkey faces east, towards the oil fields and despotism of the Middle East. Tellingly, however, Turkey’s most important city lies on the European side of the Hellespont, in the old Byzantine fortress of Constantinople or modern day Istanbul. Constantinople, with its footprint in both Europe and Asia, acts as the ultimate manifestation of Turkey’s conflicted nature. With vital interests in both Europe and Asia, Turkey seems a nation turned inwards in search of a true identity. It is in the Turkish quest for identity that the vigorous debate regarding its admission to the European Union reaches its most fundamental question: Should Turkey be Western or Eastern? While Turkey clearly possesses a very different cultural and political background than the rest of Europe, what should—and must—be important to European policy makers is Turkey’s future, not its past. Europeans and Turks must unite around common principles and common dreams and seek to strengthen the bonds of brotherhood before extremist forces on both sides ruin the Western-Turkish entente of the Kemalist era.

Despite Turkey’s ostensibly Western orientation after the reforms of Ataturk, there has been considerable European resistance to its application to enter the EU. European skepticism of Turkey is generally a byproduct of historically minded Europeans recalling the Turks at the gates of Vienna three centuries ago and the perceived threat of Islamic civilization to European values. While recent Turkish culture is secular, the Turkish population itself is overwhelmingly Islamic and recent trends have only accentuated the daily role of Islam in Turkey. The Justice and Development Party (AKP) controls the Turkish Grand National Assembly by a nearly unassailable majority, holding over 60% of all seats, as well as the position of Prime Minister. Certain elements in Turkey and elsewhere are concerned that the President—due to be elected by the parliament in 2007—will also come from the AKP. The AKP traces its origins to the Islamist Welfare Party, founded in 1982. The Welfare Party was radically Islamic, and the AKP was created by a splinter group of moderates in 2001 and thus retains its predecessor’s connection to Islam. However, unlike the Welfare Party, the AKP has repeatedly vowed to uphold secularism and democracy, and the AKP’s invocation of Islam is essentially analogous to the European political tradition of Christian Democracy. Turkish concern over the role of the AKP caused the Presidential Election in early May to end in failure, and a new General Election is scheduled for late July in order to resolve the political gridlock. Paradoxically, the moderate Islamists in Turkey are probably more democratic than the defenders of secularism. While the AKP has always worked within Turkey’s democratic framework, the army has repeatedly threatened to “intervene” to protect the Kemalist legacy of secular government. Such military posturing is clearly antithetical to liberal government, and consequently, the whole Turkish election fiasco has done much to damage Europe’s view of Turkey as a responsible and modern democracy worthy of full acceptance as a member of Europe.

The controversy regarding Turkey’s application to the EU is generally portrayed in the context of Christendom’s self-preservation in the face of Islamic radicalism. In a sense, the Europeans are correct: militant Islam is a fundamental threat to European Civilization. However, the intrinsic conflict between Islamic Fascism and the West makes it imperative and indeed, ultimately unavoidable from a Western perspective that Turkey enters the EU. If we are truly in a clash of civilizations, we must employ every means at our disposal to divide and conquer. If Europe rejects Turkey out of fear of Islam, than it will be sentencing the most Western of all Muslim states to abandonment. Kemalist Turkey has a long and proud tradition of Western policy—but that orientation must not be taken for granted. Ataturk dreamed of a Turkey fully cooperative and in perfect harmony with the rest of Europe. That dream is close to realization with Turkey’s application to the EU. But if Europe turns its back on Turkey, Turkey will turn to other sources for friends and allies—and why shouldn’t she, if after fifty years of cooperation and friendship, her European cousins decided she wasn’t European enough to join the family? Forsaken by Europe, a disillusioned Turkey would turn to the only alternative: the Sunni states such as Saudi Arabia, Egypt, and Pakistan. Turkey would turn from being a critical ally of the Western world against radical Islam to a supporter of the very Sunni regimes sponsoring Wahabbist jihad. While many Europeans have legitimate concerns about Turkish democracy and the influx of Islam into the public sector via the AKP, the way to influence Turkey’s direction is not to cut it off entirely and let the Arab states gain influence amongst Turkish policy makers, but rather to gradually encourage Turkish assimilation into the European body politic through constructive engagement.

Unfortunately, the prospect for Turkish acceptance into the EU does not appear good—at least in the short term. New French President Nicolas Sarkozy seems to have captured much of the European anti-Turkish sentiment and for the time being, it appears that Europe will continue to stall and delay as it seeks to avoid directly confronting the Turkish question. After all, Turkey did apply for membership in the Common Market all the way back in 1987—and the Turks have been patiently waiting for a concrete answer from the Europeans ever since. While it’s taken Europe almost two decades to finally get around to addressing the Turkish question, the ball is certainly moving and Turkey’s application has moved to the front of the EU docket since 2005. Whatever the delay, eventually, Europe will be forced to admit Turkey or see it switch teams halfway through the ballgame. It might take a decade or two for the strategic importance of Turkey to fully sink in amongst cautious Europeans, but Turkey’s Western orientation—and for the less ideologically driven European—geographic location to facilitate the importation of natural gas from Central Asia into Europe will ultimately pave the road from Ankara to Brussels.


Wednesday, June 06, 2007

The Gospel According to Sylvester

Mick: Like it says in the Bible, Rock, ya don't get a second chance!



Tuesday, June 05, 2007

We are all jigsaw men.

I remember, in my misspent youth, reading the short story The Jigsaw Man, by Larry Niven. It concerns a future in which organ transplantation is cheap and easy, thanks to the Organ Banks. Where do the Organ Banks get their organs? From criminals convicted of capital crimes. Unfortunately, thanks to supply and demand, there are not enough criminals to keep up, which causes the politicians to keep redefining "capital crimes" downwards.

The protagonist in The Jigsaw Man has been convicted of repeated speeding violations.

I haven't read the story in years and don't remember how it ends, but I do know that I never thought we'd be debating the ethics of involuntary organ donation in real life, any more than I thought we'd be discussing the best way to defend civilization from religious crackpots who live in the desert guarding a precious and scarce resource. But here we are.

The authoritarian maniacs running China today have long been suppressing Falun Gong. Allegations of torture and various human rights abuses are well documented.

But this is just sick.

On 9 March 2006, allegations were made of organ harvesting on living Falun Gong practitioners at the Sujiatun detention compound, an alleged labor camp and part of the China Traditional Medicine Thrombosis Treatment Center, [1] a joint-venture with Malaysian healthcare company Contry Heights Health Sanctuary and subject to oversight beyond local Chinese authority, located in Shenyang City, Liaoning province. According to at least two witnesses interviewed by The Epoch Times, internal organs of living Falun Gong practitioners have been harvested and sold to the black market, and the bodies have been cremated in the hospital's boiler room. The witnesses make allegations of nobody coming out of the camp alive, as well as six thousand practitioners being held captive at the hospital since 2001, two-thirds of whom have died to date. According to these sources, removed organs include hearts, kidneys, livers and cornea.

Now, NTD, the New York based Chinese language television network, reports Rav Elyashiv's opposition to organ harvesting, even when the patient's life is in danger.

For giggles, listen to the anchor mispronounce "Elyashiv" and "Sharei Tzedek". Highly amusing- probably the same reaction the anchor would have if she heard me pronounce "moo goo gai pan".

Anyway, my point: China is evil.

H/T The Yeshiva World.


Monday, June 04, 2007

Restaurant Meme (in which I cheat).

It's the restaurant meme, yay!

Add a direct link to the post below the person who tagged you. Include the city/state and country you're in.

Jacob Da Jew

Lakewood, New Jersey, USA

List the top five favorite places to eat at your location.

(Which doesn't parse very well. Maybe "the top five favorite places in your locale." Or perhaps "your five favorite local eateries". See? It's awkward.)

Anyway, Lakewood (Ir Hakodesh) doesn't exactly overflow with restaurants, which is incredibly odd to a person coming from Flatbush, as I am. Nevertheless, I was able to assemble six good places.

In no particular order:

J II Pizza:

This is one of the few places in Lakewood that could survive on its own merits in a more cutthroat restaurant environment, like Brooklyn for example. The pizza is good, New York style pizza- thick, chewy crust, thin dough that gives a satisfying snap! when you fold the slice in half, plenty of cheese, and good sauce. They have an adequate selection of pizza toppings, like green pepper, red pepper, onion, chewy canned tin flavored mushroom-like food product, and onion. You can also get calzones, cheese pretzels, and what is in my opinion the best falafel in Lakewood. The new location is huuuuge (by Lakewood standards) and looks nice. Seven out of ten.

Glatt Bite:

Good old fashioned fast food. Wants to be Kosher Delight when they grow up. They never will be, but it isn't bad. The lunch specials are incredible- a huge amount of food for a reasonable price. Get the Double Delight with Fries and a Small Drink for something like six or seven bucks. Also, try the sesame chicken, the pastrami schnitzel, the hot wings, and the chicken ceasar salad. Stay the hell away from the fung wong guy and the beef ceasar salad. Six point five out of ten.


The first kosher sandwich place located in a gas station in America, to my knowledge. A foot long sub (deli, schnitzel, steak, or grilled chicken) is like eight bucks, and comes with unlimited
toppings. The bread is delicious, not the flavorless meat-and-vegetable container most sandwich places give you. The cholent is flavorless. Never ever order the egg roll. Six point five out of ten.


The morons who run this place looked at Lakewood and saw a town full of hungry snobby Jews desperate for a restaurant where they could see and be seen, and responded with a beautiful, soulless place which is like the Soviet Union's version of Orchidea- whatever you want, they're out of, but LOOK AT THAT DECOR, WILL YOU, I BET IT COSTS A FAWTUNE, IT'S GAWGOUS, GEVALT I FEEL MAMESH LIKE A ROCKEFELLAH!

Then why is Circa on this list? Simple: Their world class sushi bar. Better than Tea for Two. I recommend the Lakewood roll. Eight out of ten.


From it's top secret, highly classified location (in the parking lot behind the jewelery store across from the post office between the refrigerator and the wall), Pittaleh makes the best schwarma in New Jersey, possibly the country. That's right, I said it: it's better than Famous Pita. All pita and lafa is made on -site, and they keep it in a Styrofoam thingy so its warm. Mrs. Chainik is partial to the schnitzel. Nine point two five out of ten (they lose points for not having falafel... in a freaking Yemenite/Israeli restaurant).

Tasty Bite:

Pretentious and annoying women living off their Tatty's money while their husbands drink coffee in the BMG and smoke and shmooze love Tasty Bite. Since firing all the nasty waitresses and hiring all of Uncle Mike's old staff, service has done a 180, going from "worse than a Ben Yehuda coffee shop" all the way to "deserves a higher-than-usual tip". A tip, btw, is added to your bill, because these nasty JAPs do not have the requisite empathy and/or brainpower to understand the concept of tipping. Go on Wednesdays; they have a Couples' Special: two salads, two entrees, two drinks, and two deserts for thirty bucks. For bonus funny points, watch the yeshiva boys come in and try and get the couples special.

Tasty Bite allegedly has sushi but they are always out of sushi whenever we go there. Try the nachos. The teriyaki salmon and the greek salad are both excellent. The cheesecake is less so. Seven out of ten.

Yes, that's actually six restaurants. So sue me. I'm a nonconformist, baby.

Dishonorable mentions:

Falafel and Chips

Effin' Chips is actually not that bad, but the place is unbelievably filthy. To walk in there is to contract a minor but annoying GI infection. Try the cholent, but not during summertime.

Summertime is when the bacteria come out to play.

Negative three out of ten.

Kol Tuv Pizza at the Capital Hotel

The Crapital is the worst food vendor to ever exist in Lakewood, and if you've ever eaten at the now-defunct Madison Pizza you'd know that that is one heck of a contest. If you have to choose between eating a falafel from The Crapital or starving to death, go with The Crapital... but think long and hard if its worth it. Negative seventeen out of ten.

Now, I'm supposed to tag five lucky bloggers, but I doubt I have that bug a readership. Five? What am I, Instapundit?

Here goes:

Brooklyn Wolf


Dofun Akuma

Da Litvak

And... oh... I don't know



Speak, computer!

Make Stephen Hawking green with envy by clicking here.

Although I suppose you could make him envious by, ya know, walking, too.


Like taking a six year old to watch Dawn of the Dead.

Caught Knocked Up Saturday night.

Yes, that's right. I took my pregnant wife to watch a movie about pregnancy, including an incredibly graphic birth scene.

Not the most intelligent idea I've ever had. I don't think my right thumb will function in quite the same way ever again.

Very funny, btw. I highly recommend it to all you unpregnant persons out there. be advised, though: this thing earns its R rating, what with the aforementioned birth scene and the filthy, filthy (but very funny!) dialogue.


Friday, June 01, 2007

Eruv Rav to get his day in court.

A Williamsburg rabbi is facing assault charges for his role in a scuffle that started because of a dispute he had with another Jew regarding the issue of an Eruv in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn.

Rabbi Sh. Greenbaum will appear in Brooklyn Criminal Court for allegedly striking 19-year-old E. Klein in the face, when Klein walked down Bedford Avenue with his kippah in his hand, believing that the Eruv in Williamsburg is kosher, but which the rabbi believes it is not. The attackers pummeled Klein while yelling "you are not a Jew!" according to court documents.

Through a translator, Greenbaum, 44, said he notice Kleins head was uncovered so he asked him to put his kippah on, in a nice way. "I would never hurt somebody. I would never return a punch," he said.

Klein was also charged with a lesser assault on another participant in the brawl.

This blogger hopes they hang Greenbaum from the eruv by his peyos. This guy is a rosha gomur.

H/T Vos Iz Neias. Check out the comments. My favorite:

Well, I guess Moshiach won't be coming this week.


Thursday, May 31, 2007

Gunboat Diplomacy!

It's the most efficient kind of diplomacy, after all. Lots quicker than dressing up in striped pans and handing around little bits of chocolate wrapped in gold foil during embassy receptions while that annoying string music they always play in movies during fancy shmancy black tie receptions plays in the background (you know the music... dah dah dah dah DAH! Dah dah... dah dah...)

(Irrelevant tangent: this came up in a Google search for "those songs they always play in movies".)

Look, I'm just some moron with a moronblog, not someone who's opinion actually matters. I don't have the jorb of coming up with a good, solid, workable strategery to deal with that evil little troll in Tehran who is busily trying to get nukes and is crazy enough to use them if he ever got his evil little claws on them. I do know that one good thing, at least, has come out of the Iraq mess.

People know that the current Administration is crazy enough to actually go to war with anyone who pisses them off sufficiently.

They aren't, of course, not really. (Shhhh. Keep that little tidbit to yourself.) But speaking softly and carrying the big stick only works if people think you really might take the big stick and start getting all LAPD on a country. People know the difference between a promise and an empty threat. If Clinton or Carter told someone "behave or I'll bomb your country", no one took them seriously, and for good reason. But when, say, Ray-Gun spit in the eye of the Evil Empire and told them that the United States of gosh-darn America was no longer taking no guff from nobody, people listened, because the crazy senile old whackadoo was really seriously gonna push the button and laugh while he did it.

Is this the ideal way to conduct international intercourse? No, of course not. But if, for example, Denmark began a nuclear program, we could talk to them, reason with them, buy furniture and cellphones from them. You can reason with the sane. The insane sometimes will listen only to a tazer.


Wednesday, May 30, 2007

If you can't be right, be loud.

As we settled into discussion, I discovered to my delight that the students were attentive, respectful, and vocal, and the entire affair flowed in a relatively genial-yet- enthusiastic manner for over an hour.

The teacher then decided she had to open her mouth.
Heh. RTWT.


Shock Report: Goyim may actually be human beings, new study suggests. Satmer not convinced.

A Conservative Rabbi from Minnesota has come up with what he calls a "hechsher tzedek", a certification testifying to the company's commitment to social justice issues.

Now, I've said it before and I'll say it again- hearing "justice" from a liberal is like hearing "freedom" from a conservative, a code word meaning you aren't going to get any. And The Forward is the one hyping this, and their beef (ha!) with Rubashkin is well known, as is PETA's.

Now, as an evil neocon, I support the abuse of workers and the torture of animals and burning orphanages and so forth. Also, most if not all of the meat in my freezer is from Rubashkin- they are, after all, the largest kosher meat company in the US. But, as much as I hate hippies (and Rabbi Morris Allen seems like a prime example of the type), he might have a point.

I am an alarm installer, and I do a lot of installations and maintenance work for a lot of Jewish owned businesses in New Jersey and New York. Many if not most employ illegal immigrants, and treat them like dirt. I know they get paid peanuts and get abused constantly.

How do I know this?

I never quite learned the trick of treating certain people differently, I guess. I know you are supposed to treat your social inferiors a certain way, your peers another way, and your social betters yet another way, but I've never been able to pull this off.

That's right. I talk to Mexicans like they're human beings, not like they're horses who have unaccountably learned to talk and wear clothes but are still fit for nothing but drudgery.

I get told things most employers never hear.

This hechsher tzedek may not be a bad idea after all. Maybe a movement in the heimishe velt to learn how to treat other people like human beings btzelem Elokim (see this post) is something that is sorely needed.

H/T Y-Love


Movie Wednesday

Faisal: They call him the Sand Spider.

Trilby: Really? Why?

Faisal: Probably because it sounds scary.

True Lies


Friday, May 25, 2007

The stuffing is the ikur.

There is no such thing as a potato blintz.

There. I said it. I have stated this as a hard, unequivocal fact.

The only real blintzes are cheese blintzes. Cherry, cherry and cheese, strawberry, blueberry, apple-cinnamon (my personal favorite)- all these are pale imitations of the One True Blintz Stuffing, which is cheese.

Grated or mashed potato stuffed in dough is called a knish. So let it be written.

What is the difference, you may ask?

The accompaniments, of course. Blintzes are served with sour cream. Knishes are served with deli style mustard. It doesn't matter if anyone actually eats the sour cream or the mustard- I've happily eaten knishes with no mustard, just like I've eaten falafel with no techina- but it mamesh does not pas to serve blintzes with no sour cream, just like serving latkes with no apple sauce is a booshe despite the fact that it tastes just fine stam.

Ai, you can say that knishes are fried and blintzes are baked, but I can show you Gabilla's knishes (no website), which are both fried and baked and are delicious.

You can tell me that blintzes are rectangular and flat, whereas knishes are either round (pizza shop style) or square (Mom's Knishes)- but I tell you that this is no reiya, because a food is a food even when you change its shape. We learn this out from Italian slices, which everyone holds is still pizza even though it is puffed up and square and not flat and triangular.

And bourekas are no reiya, either, because I hold the same thing by bourekas- stuffing potato into dough makes it a knish whether it is square, round, or in the case of bourekas, triangular.

You can ask me what makes a boureka different from a blintz, and I can answer: you serve a boureka with schug, tomato salad, and a hard boiled egg.

Calzones are clearly the work of the Satan to confuse people, and I have serious doubts on what bracha is appropriate- and in any case, it is part of the pizza family.

If you ever wondered what your husband/ brother/ son does all night in the BM on Shavous night, now you know.


Thursday, May 17, 2007

Music duel: Jewish klezmer vs Gipsy music - Train de vie

From a wonderful, hilarious, heartbreaking movie.

I suggest you watch it. And I suggest you reserve your judgment till the end.


Word to the Wise

I will have to remember this quote the next time I get into a flamewar.

A person who always wants to win the argument is very intolerant of truth. The truth may be staring him in the face, but because he is determined to win at all costs, he ignores it completely. If you want to find the real truth, you must rid yourself of the urge to win. Then you will be able to see the truth if you wish.

(Rebbe Nachman of Breslov)

 blog it


Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Ron Paul found beaten within an inch of his life.

Ron Paul was found bloody and bleeding last night outside John Birch Society headquarters, police say. He was covered in tire iron-like marks. A police source close to the investigation claims that strange markings were embedded in Congressman Paul's forehead and buttocks. According to a forensic report, it appears the words Office of the Mayor of the City of New York were engraved on the tire iron.

Ron Paul most recently had a run in with Rudy Giuliani at the debate. Mr. Paul stated that 911 was America's fault, and Mr. Giuliani asked him to recant the statement. In video from the debate, Mr. Giuliani's left eye can be seen twitching. Mr. Giuliani was recently the Mayor of the City of New York, and frequently carries the ceremonial tire iron of his former office. When asked for a comment on the frequent assault, Mr. Giuliani said "I beat that moron like a rented mule. I beat him so hard I think the tire iron has a new dent. I'll do the same to any moron who wants to tell me 911 was America's fault. And if he doesn't apologize, I'll do it again. Rudy smash! Graaaaaah!"

Police are continuing to investigate. Anyone who has information on the case should call 555-TIPS.


With great power comes great responsibility

We're Thinking of Going on the Road

Teen girl #1: Lauren! What is the name of the movie I saw that one time? You know -- there was a guy in it. He had, um... hair? He was sad and stuff?
Lauren: Johnny Depp in Edward Scissorhands.
Teen girl #1: Yes! Exactly! Him! He was in another movie. I swear... Um... His hair was different, though, and he had that hat. We should rent that movie.
Lauren: The movie Secret Window will scare you. Your mind can't take in something like that.
Teen girl #1: Hey! Well, yeah, maybe you're right.
Teen girl #2, to Lauren: How can you ever tell what she's talking about?!
Lauren: I can read the minds of idiots. It's a sad and useless power. Except, of course, in cases like this.

--Central Park

via Overheard in New York, May 15, 2007


Monday, May 14, 2007

Candidate number 368923560: Mike Bloomberg

Mayor Mike is planning on spending a cool one billion- $1,000,000,000- to guarantee a Democratic win, by running as a third party independent. Chuck Hagel is cheering him on. That's not my joke, it's Ace's. And Newt Gingrich is mulling his candidacy.

At this point, is there a white, Christian, middle aged male with (as Dave Barry sez) two dark suits who has not been indicted recently not running? At this pace I may just throw my hat intot he ring myself.

Heh. There's a thought. Our first blogger-President. With an all blogger Cabinet. Tee hee.

Well, for Secretary of State, I'd get Mark Steyn- he knows how to talk to those furriners, being one himself. Glenn Reynolds will be Attorney General and Frank J will be Secretary of War (one of my platforms will be to rename the Department of Defense, because everyone knows that the best defense is a good offense).

Secretary of Education will be Ahitoricality. Secretary of the Interior will be Lileks. Rubin can be the Secretary of Commerce- he's in advertising, he must know how to get the furriners to buy our stuff, which is what the Secretary of commerce does as far as I can tell. Secretary of the Treasury will be whoever runs AdSense.

Did I leave anyone out? Want to nominate a blogger to fill a position? Comments!


Ye Olde Security System

I have a professional interest in crime, being a security systems specialist. So it was with great and geeky joy that I found these examples of early CCTV systems, which were so expensive that only banks and other high risk targets could afford them. Now, of course, you can get a top of the line hardcore security system for your business or home for less than five grand.

Price is not the only thing that has changed. I liked the people who, after a robbery, picked up cash dropped by the perps and put it back on the counter.

Video One
Video Two


Sunday, May 13, 2007

Buzzwords a go go!

What, exactly, does Web 2.o mean?

I tried Wikipedia, which is never incorrect, and they say that "Web 2.0 is the business revolution in the computer industry caused by the move to the internet as platform, and an attempt to understand the rules for success on that new platform."

Which means precisely bupkis.

I think that Web 2.0 is one of those marketing buzzwords that have no real meaning, like paradigm, or synergy, or fair trade. These words are the prostitutes of the English language, willing to work for anyone at all. Words like these have no definitions, just connotations. You don't know what it means, but you know what it implies, and you know if some slick Rick in a Hugo Boss suit mentions two or more of these words in a single paragraph you are going to be paying about 20% more than you thought.

Here's a cute little viral video about Supermarket 2.0. Enjoy!

Full disclosure: as I wrote this post, I realized that I'm probably going to up my Google hits quite a bit. X Box 360. IPhone. Paris Hilton.

Tee hee.


Thursday, May 10, 2007

Jewish KosKid Quits Kos Over Anti Jewish, I Mean Anti Zionist Moonbatism

In Ye Olden Dayes TM, Jews voted Democratic for the most part. There is a very good reason for that: Republicans were crazy scary antisemites. Right up until the second when Pat Buchanan was a mainstream Republican, Jews voted for the people who reminded them of Nazis the least.

But now (i.e. for the past 25 years or so) that the Neocons have decided to support Israel (because its a democracy, not for any moral reason), the Left has embraced antizionism as a policy... and this leads to rhetoric that sounds, to Jews, indistinguishable from the most violent rabid strains of antisemitism.

This is interesting:
clipped from newsbusters.org

The goal is the same, and the reason is not people's concern for Human rights, of even Palestinian rights. Its just plain old Israel Bashing as a way to clear people's conscience by finding a scapegoat and a target for their pacifist post-modernist views.

People here are advancing ideology that leads directly to Israel being destroyed as a Jewish and democratic, and me dying - since the two are one and the same…The TV ethics employed by some members of this site here is a mirror of misguided ideology and theory. Reading this site for the past few months has me feeling like I was reading the writings of West European communists in the 1970's : Confidant, just, well written, scientific, moral (remember the "evils" of capitalism?) . Yet - in the view of history - utter garbage.

I came to this site with Leftist Zionist Environmentalist Pro-Peace ideology (Meretz style).

I leave it with a heavy doubt of the entire "Progressive" ideology, morals and goals.

blog it


A deep moral and philosophical question of great import.

If I told you I found Waiting for Godot amusing and interesting, would you think less of me?

I saw it on PBS a few years back, and I actually liked it. I found it interesting and full of fascinating imagery. Plus its full of my favorite form of humor, the non sequitur. But I grew up in Boro Park and learned long ago not to show any signs of intellectualism. Also I'm pretty sure that admitting to like Beckett is a sign of snobbishness.

Anyhoo, here is Waiting for Woody Alan. The beards are badly pasted on, and the accents silly, but the dialogue is dead on- you could hear it on Thirteenth Avenue in any conversation.

That's probably why I liked Waiting for Godot so much- besides for the Oirish brogues, boyo, the dialogue was straight out of Shomrei Shabbos after 11:00.


The Simpsons Movie Trailer #3

I want to see this now. Now!!!


Chasydzi w Leżajsku- 2007

This is Lizhensk, right?


Lag B'omer in Meron 2007

Chaos... confusion... cigarette smoke... crowds... singing... makes me want to hop a plane to E"Y.


Wednesday, May 09, 2007

The Lion in Winter

Later this summer, Tony Blair will resign as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and his beleaguered Labor Party will be inherited by Gordon Brown, a current financial chancellor in the Blair government and in all likelihood, Blair’s successor as Prime Minister as well. The end of Blair’s decade in office seems an appropriate time to reflect upon the lasting significance of the man who brought Labor in from the wilderness and proved to be perhaps the most enduring champion of the trans-Atlantic alliance since Dwight Eisenhower.

Tony Blair entered office in 1997 with a sweeping public mandate to reform the British welfare state and restore Britain’s faltering economy. Blair’s vision was to transform Labor (and consequently Britain itself) from a demoralized socialist wreck into a genuinely pro-American party which stood for justice abroad and economic freedom at home. Blair’s domestic agenda was a resounding success. “New Labor,” as Blair calls his party, is here to stay and the days of former party leader Ramsey McDonald advocating the socialization of the means of production are gone for good. Blair’s legacy, however, will ultimately be judged on the success or failure of his support for nation building in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Heart-wrenchingly, the British public has turned against its former champion. With his nation discontented with slow progress in Iraq, the Prime Minister has become the object of vitriolic scorn and animosity on a scale not even paralleled in the United States with the current administration. As Blair’s approval ratings have plummeted, so have Labor’s, and the opposition Conservatives stand poised to assume control after the next election cycle. The only chance for Labor seems to be an early exit for Blair followed by frantic action from presumably Gordon Brown to win back over former Labor supporters who left the party because of Mr. Blair.

The resurgence of David Cameron’s Conservatives is disenchanting from an American perspective principally because Cameron’s party is not conservative in any sense of the word. Cameron is a slick politician who has forsaken the traditional Tory policy of pro-Americanism and moved towards a generic anything-but-Labor platform. Cameron has gone as far as to indicate that he would move the U.K. away from the United States politically and his support for American action in the Middle East is unreliable to say the least.

The best chance for the trans-Atlantic alliance to be preserved is probably for Gordon Brown and Labor to retain power. While Brown is certainly not as vocal about his American sympathies as Mr. Blair, Mr. Brown is a reliable ally and is a moderate supporter of a continued British presence in Iraq. Unfortunately, this muted position is the best America can help for out of its long-time strongest and most important ally.

What Blair’s exit demonstrates more clearly than anything is that Britain is no longer the rock of Europe. After three and a half centuries of leading the Western world, Great Britain has finally settled into a long slumber. While after the Victorians Great Britain had seemingly found a balance between projecting power and shunning colonialism, the Second World War caused Great Britain to fully retreat from its imperial past and settle into its role as a second rate world power. The status quo of the Thatcher-Blair era was a waning Britain struggling to exercise what influence it had left as it sought to support Washington in strategic areas across the globe. However, even this minimized approach seems likely to meet its own end as the trans-Atlantic alliance’s last great champion makes his exit.

With Britain now seemingly in perpetual retreat, it is more important than ever for American policy makers to look elsewhere to forge lasting and meaningful alliances. While Europe has always dominated global politics, the strategic scene has, for the past quarter century, been shifting towards the Orient and in particular the Pacific Rim. Japan is the most likely candidate to replace Great Britain as our foremost ally, and so long as we finally liberate Japan from the burdensome post-WWII restrictions placed upon its military, the Japanese will be able to project power deep into Asia and safeguard a liberal order on the high seas just as Great Britain did throughout its history. Coupled with a strong bi-lateral alliance with Japan, a strategic partnership with India would not only balance a growing China, but provide a reliable trading partner without the double-edged sword of doing business with the Devil. In short, a new Pacific entente is in order, fully integrating growing Japanese self-confidence, India’s immense population and economic potential, and of course the hard power of an American Carrier Battle Group.

As American policymakers look towards the brave new world of the future, they would do well to keep in mind the strategic implications of the Blair administration’s fall from power. With Great Britain on the defensive, new strategic partnerships will have to be forged and while Great Britain will always remain a sentimental and ideological ally of the United States, hard power has shifted decisively to the Pacific Rim. The future of the world rests with the burgeoning powers of Japan and India, and perhaps if we are less fortunate, with China as well. While the twilight of British power is surely lamentable, if history teaches us anything, it is that self-delusion in the face of unpleasant facts is folly. We as a people cannot meet the challenges of the 21st century with the strategic partnerships of the 20th.


Just got a beter view of the chopper (scroll down). Its spraying... Somethig, hopefully not chemtrails.


There is a small helicopter buzzing buzzily around south Lakewood right now at barely treetop height. I feel like I'm in M*A*S*H. How bizarre.


Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Falafel Chicken

Last night we had falafel chicken, which recipe I got from Kosher by Design: Short on Time by Susie Fishbein. And behold, for it was goooooood.

I was pretty simple to make, and it was delicious.

You need:

One and a half chicken breasts, split and cut into strips.
One box of dry falafel mix.
Extra Virgin olive oil.
One tomato.
One cucumber.
Tehina (I prefer the new Salatim brand. They don't seem to have a website, but I first saw the brand in Lakewood supermarkets around Chanukah time.)
A deep skillet.
Two bowls.
A wooden spatula.
Metal tongs.
A fork.


Pour one third of your dry falafel mix into one bowl and the other two thirds in the other one. Split your chicken breasts and cut into strips. Roll the chicken pieces in the bowl with less falafel mix. Pour some warm water into the bowl with more falafel mix and stir until you have a spreadable paste. Mix well and set aside. Make sure it stands for about ten minutes. Pour olive oil into the skillet until it is filled up about half way and heat it to medium. While it is heating up, finely dice the tomato and the cucumber.

When the oil is hot, dip the chicken pieces into the wet falafel mixture so that it is evenly coated on both sides. Place the chicken into the skillet carefully, not touching any other piece. Let it cook evenly on both sides, turning them over with the spatula. When a piece is stiff enough not to bend when you squeeze it with the tongs, take it out of the pan and put it on a plate covered in paper towel.

Serve in a pita with tehina and diced vegetables. Serves 2.

Status: Meat
Time: 40 minutes (taking the ingredients out of the fridge to serving)
Difficulty: Beginner
Cleanup: not bad. Only used a few utensils, though washing a skillet with an inch of oil in it is a bit of a challenge. Keep the heat on medium and the serving dish close to the pan so oil does't splatter everywhere.
Overall: a keeper. Serve informal guests on a Sunday night when barbecue is not an option and you have enough advance warning to air out the apartment after cooking but not enough warning to go shopping. Frying falafel mix makes your apartment smelling like the 415 bus to Yerushalayim. Then again, your guests might not mind that.