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Monday, September 27, 2004

No Regrets

My father told me a story that has some relevance to Yom Kippur. A while ago, a TV show featured an interview with an ex-con. This ex-con was a well known bank robber who had been in an out of jail many times. (Apparently, he knew how to "work the system".) At the time of the interview, he was "turning over a new leaf" and had recently written a book about his experiences in and out of jail. During the entire interview, he lodged many a complaint about the system. It seems that being in jail was not exactly a pleasant experience. (Big surprise there.) My father noticed something interesting about the interview. During the entire interview, not once did he express regret for what he did. My father commented at the time that they should keep their eye on him. Sure enough, the ex-con who supposedly turned over a new leaf, was back robbing banks and found himself incarcerated again. One of the first steps towards teshuvah is to express regret over one's actions. A repeat offender who does not even do this basic step is almost guarenteed to continue in their old ways.

Sunday, September 26, 2004

Quite Rightly

I went this moring with my father to do my yearly purchase of a lulav and esrog. Is it just me, or is it that this year they are of a more pale yellow than usual? I also noticed that most of them had a lopsided pitom.

Two Yom Kippur Jokes

Hope everyone had a great and rewarding Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur. I have for you two Yom Kippur jokes, the first courtesy of Protocols. A big Red Sox fan comes running to his rabbi before Yom Kippur. "Rabbi, I have a dillema. The Sox are playing their big game on Yom Kippur. What do I do?" The rabbi replies, "Well, what do you think they invented VCRs for?" And the person replies, "Rabbi, that's a great idea! But... I didn't know Yom Kippur services were on cable?!" The second joke I heard from my rabbi a long time ago. One time an ignorant country bumpkin comes to shul on Yom Kippur and sees everyone bending over putting their tallis (prayer shawl) over their heads (standard part of the Yom Kippur service). He asks someone, "Why is everyone doing this?" The guy, being a big joker, says to the guy, "Well, when we bend over and cover ourselves with the talis, we like to grab a quick snack." The next year, the bumpkin was prepared and brought along a small bag containing a chicken drumstick. When the congragation bent over covering themselves with their talleisim, he did likewise, and started eating his chicken. Everyone had already come up from bending over and still noticed that one guy was still bowing down with his tallis over his head. The rabbi comes over to inquire, thinking the person is some sort of saint. The person looks up and rather impatiently replies, "Well, rabbi, some people are fast eaters and some people are slow eaters!"

Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Another Shot Heard Around The World

Mihhail Kalashnikov, the inventor of the Kalashnikov machine gun, which Guiness World Records lists as the most widely used automatic weapon, not to mention the terrorists' weapon of choice, has now started his own line of vodka.