Saturday, September 27, 2008

Rosh Hashannah A Year in Review

So Rosh Hashannah begins tomorrow night, Monday night. I am going to be with my family here in Maale Adummim, as well as visiting a Moroccan family that lives near me. So to all my readers I say Shannah Tovah (Good Year), and may you all be written in the book of the living and remembrance. For those who want to know what Rosh Hashannah is all about, here is an excerpt from the Encyclopedia Judaica pages 254 to 258.
"In the earliest times the Hebrew year began in autumn with the opening of the economic year. There followed in regular succession the seasons of seed-sowing, growth and ripening of the corn under the influence of the former and the latter rains, harvest and ingathering of the fruits. In harmony with this was the order of the great agricultural festivals, according to the oldest legislation, namely, the feast of unleavened bread at the beginning of the barley harvest, in the month of Aviv; the feast of harvest, seven weeks later; and the feast of ingathering at the going out or turn of the year (Ex. 23:14-17; 34:18, 22-23; Deut. 16:1-16).

This system of dating the New-Year is that which was adopted by the Semites generally, while other peoples, as the Greeks and Persians, began the year in spring, both methods of reckoning being primarily agricultural and based on the seasons of seed-time and harvest. Josephus asserts (l.c. i. 3, § 3) that while Moses appointed Nisan to be the first month for the sacred festivals and other solemnities, he preserved the original order of the months for buying and selling and for the transaction of other business.

It is altogether probable that the beginning of the year was celebrated from ancient times in some special way, like the New Moon festival. The earliest reference, however, to such a custom is, probably, in the account of the vision of Ezekiel (Ezek. 40:1) which, as stated above, took place at the beginning of the year, on the tenth day of the month (Tishri). On the same day the beginning of the year of jubilee was to be proclaimed by the blowing of trumpets (Lev. 25:9). According to the Septuagint rendering of Ezek. 45:20-25, special sacrifices were to be offered on the first day of the seventh month as well as on the first day of the first month. This first day of the seventh month was appointed by the Law to be "a day of blowing of trumpets." There was to be a holy convocation; no servile work was to be done; and special sacrifices were to be offered (Lev. 23:23-25; Num. 29:1-6; comp. ib. 10:1-10). This day was not expressly called New-Year's Day, but it was evidently so regarded by the Jews at a very early period.

The observance of the 1st of Tishri as Rosh ha-Shanah, the most solemn day next to Yom Kippur, is based principally on the traditional law to which the mention of "Zikkaron" (= "memorial day"; Lev. 23:24) and the reference of Ezra to the day as one "holy to Hashem" (Neh. 8:9) seem to point. The passage in Psalms (81:1-5) referring to the solemn feast which is held on New Moon Day, when the shofar is sounded, as a day of "mishpat" (judgment) of "the G-d of Jacob" is taken to indicate the character of Rosh ha-Shanah.
So much has changed for me in this past year, and I expect so much more to change. I have twice contemplated ending this blogging, and twice I have been convinced to continue. I have been challenged at work, and I will continue to be challenged. I have been put to the test physically in martial arts, and I will continue to meet each challenge. I have fallen in and out of love, and I expect to continue to learn what love really is. I have lost weight, and I have gotten in better shape. I have made mistakes, and I have mended fences. I have fallen flat on my face, and I have gotten back up stronger than before. I have been lost in Hebrew conversations, and I have gained better understanding.

As a whole, here in Israel we have experienced terrorism and we have felt peace. We have been betrayed, and we have been inspired. We have been left with questions, and we have sought out the answers. In the end the struggle for our purpose continues, and our search for the real path of Israel continues.

אדם צובר זכרונות - אברהם טל

Yet, this is not the end, it is only the beginning. So with that........

The Chornicles of Ehav Ever wishes you all a Shannah Tovah
Read Entire Post!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Yemenite Music and Dance Break

So I am a bit busy right now with work, martial arts, and also getting ready for Rosh Hashannah. It is hard to believe that this will be my second Rosh Hashannah here in Israel. Where does the time go? Either before or after Rosh Hashannah I will have a year's review in pictures. I am waiting for my mother send the photos from her visit here.

Until I have time to post something new, enjoy the following videos of Yemenite Jewish dancing here in Israel. I hope this will hold you over until I do my next post.

ריקוד חבני

ריקוד תימני

Though I have posted this song a few times, it is one of my favorites so I will do it again. It is one of my favorite Yemenite Jewish love songs.

Zion Golan, Ya Mahije ציון גולן - יא מחיג'ה

Of course I could not forget a classic by Ofra Haza, one of the most well known Yemenite Israeli singers.

עפרה חזה בריקוד יהודי תימני - צור מנתי
Read Entire Post!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Mixed Chicks Chat Interview: Part 2

As some of you know I keep up with the Mixed Chicks Chat (נשים מערובים)on Talk Shoe. Mixed Chicks Chat is the only live weekly show about being racially and culturally mixed. It is hosted LIVE every week by Fanshen Cox and Heidi Durrow.

I recently made my second appearance on the show concerning how being mixed affects where and how I live here in Israel. As always, it was a really good discussion, and I often learn so much about myself by simply being interviewed.

Further, congratulations to both Fanshen and Heidi on winning the coveted 2008 Black Weblog Award for Best Podcast. It goes without saying that both Fanshen and Heidi are doing wonders to advance the issues concerning people of mixed ancestry, and its affects worldwide. They are truly trailblazers in both their diversity in topics, as well as their efforts which bring together people of so many different types of mixes.

You can find my second appearance on the show here. It is under Episode #67 title Location, Location, Location (מקום מקום מקום). You can also hear my first appearance on Mixed Chicks Chat on the same page under Episode 43: Black and Jewish.

For more information about what those Mixed Chicks are about you can visit their blog at Mixed Chicks Chat Blog. Check them out, and most important join the discussion.
Read Entire Post!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Internationally known, locally reconized, and publicly accepted

When I lived in America, I used to tell people this as I traveled the world. I have always loved to travel and see interesting places and meet interesting people. This is one of the beauties of blogging, since it has put me on track to areas of the world I have yet to visit and areas that I more than likely will never be able to visit.

During my attendance of the Jewish Bloggers Convention in Jerusalem a few weeks ago, there was a suggestion that was made that adding a counter helps let you know how many people actually visit your site. Though I prefer the comments of visitors, since it lets me know what they think about my posts, I decided that I would look into adding a counter of some type.

Instead I found something better and that is the Feedjit that you see on the right side. The Feedjit allows me to see where in the world people are viewing my blog from. Though I get a lot of hits from here in Israel, from America, and London, I now see that I am getting hits from over the world. After the first week of adding the Feedjit, I noticed that I was getting hits from Europe, Asia, Australia, India, and I even got a hit from Iran.

I have been Japan, Ethiopia, Switzerland, Italy, Mexico, and some day Senegal, Mali, and maybe Brazil. So to all the people who visit my blog from various parts of the world. Hello from Israel, and welcome to my blog. Please, sign in and let me know your thoughts. You never know I may someday visit your home, and we may just pass each other on the streets in your local town.

A Tribe Called Quest - Award Tour

So hello world here I am. Because now I see that I am living up that statement that I used to tell people. I am truly am Internationally known, locally recognized, and publicly accepted.

The Chronicles of Ehav Ever will continue!
Read Entire Post!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Living with Addiction: Part 1

I have a confession to make. I have an addiction that I have been trying to hide. It is a problem, and I know I have to deal with it if I am going to go on with my life. They say that the first step to dealing with addiction is to admit that there is a problem. What is my addiction, you ask? I hold back because I am afraid to tell people of my shortcomings. Yet, because you are all my readers and my friends I will share it only with you.

Yes, I am addicted to cooking and cooking shows, specifically Iron Chef and Iron Chef America.

The First Taste

I remember how it all began, on that sunny afternoon while I was living in Union City, CA. The year was 1999 and Ioved watching Japanese shows on the International Channel. It was on that fateful day in 1999 that I got my first glimpse such a glorious show for those of us who love to cook and that show was Iron Chef. Forget Tony Stark and Iron Man, he holds nothing to the fame, glory, and honor of being an Iron Chef.

As time went on I found myself long to hear those beautifully spoken by the Chairman, Hai Cousine. Thus when I moved to NYC, I was thrilled to find out that Iron Chef was now a show in America as well. Yet, I had to hide my addiction from those close to me. Some of them more than likely knew of my addiction, because I was always inviting them over for lunch or dinner. A few of them I invited over for breakfast. I found myself dreaming of becoming the first Kosher Iron Chef, and I would day dream of lentals and cous cous.

I also found that I was not alone in my addiction for Iron Chef. There were others who aspired to learn whose cousine reigns supreme. We were a hearty lot, and we found comfort in each others weakness. My particular weak spot was that as I watched Iron Chef I found myself having to cook something and eat during the show. Side Note: for those who don't know I have a condition I inherited from my father. When I eat and I hear someone talking or I am watching something whatever I hear and see becomes 40% more interesting to me.

Iron Chef America - Battle Mango

The Change

When you become addicted to something it changes you inside and out. You may think everything is okay, but in reality you are not the same. You may start avoiding people in fear that they will know your secret. Once my friends found out about my addiction to cooking, and they were appalled, yet starving so not a word was said. Yet, I could feel their eyes rolling in contempt. Wait, that's not why their eyes were rolling. Their eyes were rolling in delight of my mastery of Moroccan cuisine and juices mixed with ginger.

You may feel fear that someone is watching you, and you may feel guilt. I no longer feel anything, for as I have said before I am man and I am hungry. I now accept my addiction to cooking and that comes with it.

I am not afraid to admit that I caramelize some of my sauces.

I am not afraid to admit that I carefully choose and dice my ingreadiants.

I am not afraid to admit that I use Yemenite Hwaj for certain dishes.

I am not afraid to admit that I use rice milk.

I am not afraid to admit that I add honey to some of my dishes.

In the end I am the one who has to live with my culinary creations and if I am fed and fed well, there is nothing any of you can do to stop my fall into cooking madness. I am a man of faith, and I am a man of the kitchen. Ask anyone who has known me, I am well versed in the ways of the knife, the blender, and the sauce pan. Laugh if you will, but my thirst for freshly squeezed juices will not be denied. It is a thirst that must be quenched day and night.

You can think what you like about me, but until you have cooked a mile in my kitchen you cannot judge me.

The Final Analysis

So here I sit in my apartment in Maale Adummim, Israel. Waiting, watching, and hoping that someone will download another video of Iron Chef and Iron Chef America. I sit by my computer with a special You Tube button, shaking at the thought that there will be a new video for me to savor and later imitate.

Is it wrong that for years I desired to be a place where the Jacknun and the Malawach runs free? Is it a crime to dream of Falafal and Lachuch running freely down the mountainside? Is it a sin to have enjoyed both Ethiopian and Turkish coffee, even though I am not a coffee drinker? Well, if it is a sin then I am a sinner I admit it, are you happy?

My addiction to cooking and to the Iron Chef could cost me everything; my job, my home, my family, and my friends. Okay, I am being a bit dramatic that won't actually happen, but play along with me here.

I know that you all now hate me for my addiction, and I stand to lose your friendship. So I beg of you, while you still can. Please, look away...............I'm hideous.

The Chronicles of Ehav Ever will continue, unless I can find something else to cook.

Read Entire Post!