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What To Do in 5773

Dr. Ruth, Shmuley Boteach, Mayim Bialik, Shalom Auslander, and 23 more on ensuring a meaningful year

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Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers

This new year as we try to make the world a better place for working families, their kids and their kids’ educators, I want to take a minute to take a deep breath—no, not yoga; just a deep breath—to get some perspective on life and be grateful for the relationships/bonds I have in my life.

***

Deborah E. Lipstadt, Dorot Professor of Modern Jewish and Holocaust Studies at Emory University

Deborah Lipstadt

This past year I read nightly with a 5-year-old. His teachers taught him how to read; I taught him to love it. Every night we read for 15 minutes, the time the school requested. He’d set the timer. Soon he was setting it for 18, then 20, and then 22 minutes. At first we followed reading with a reward: a game of Angry Birds or iPad baseball. Eventually we forgot that and just read. And a few days ago this first-grader was placed in the advanced reading group with second-graders. This coming year, we’ll work on writing. I won’t worry much about spelling, penmanship, or grammar—that’s for his teachers. We are going to let his imagination rip. Some of his stories, I assume, will be fiction or as he says, “things that didn’t happen, like Charlotte’s Web,” and some will concern things that did happen “like dinosaurs, volcanoes, or Chumash.”

If he loves writing as much as reading, I will have had a very good year.

***

Jonathan Goldstein, frequent contributor, This American Life

In my early 20s, I was in a spoken-word band. I performed a piece about a pirate trying to steal my penis, and another about defecating out a racing horse on a first date. That kind of thing.

My best friend Howard was the drummer, and just before our first actual show, standing there on stage about to start, I turned to him and said, off mic, “I love you, man” to which Howard replied, “What’re you, Prince?”

That cured me of the spontaneous I-love-you’s for a good many years, but it’s something I miss and would like to re-instate because, as awkward as it can be to say such a thing, having someone die and never getting to say it at all is worse.

I need to start slipping them in somehow, like insurance. At the end of phone conversations might be a safe bet.

“I love you.”

“What?”

But it’ll be too late. I’ll have already hung up, and they won’t be able to do a thing about it.

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Can Shmuley Boteach go two seconds without promoting one of his books?

Ephraim_K says:

Can Shmuley Boteach go five seconds without promoting one of his books?

gwhepner says:

RESPONDING TO ONE OF EMILY NUSSBAUM’S ROSH HASHANAH
RESOLUTIONS

One of Emily Nussbaum’s Rosh Hashanah resolutions

is responding to the writers she admires.

I consider this to be the best of all solutions

for all the unread and unhappy versifiers

like me, and wonder whether it is possible to garner

from her a note of admiration for this verse.

Even if it isn’t, I wish Emily a shanah

that’s sweet, if she to what is sweet is not averse.

gwhepner@yahoo.com

Very surprised that Shmuely Boteach did beg for campaign money!

LAWINZ COHEN says:

I HOPE LESLIE EPSTEIN ENJOYS FRANCE

just wanted to say this might be my favorite piece on Tablet yet. awesome job, guys

Mr Auslander, hurry up already! but i do think your shrink sounds like a great fellow

He will be welcomed but I guess he won’t have to move

LAWINZ COHEN says:

too bad!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

One of Emily Nussbaum’s Rosh Hashanah resolutions is responding to the writers she admires. I consider this to be the best of all solutions for all the unread and unhappy versifiers like me, and wonder whether it is possible to garner from her a note of admiration for this verse.
I am beautiful woman and I love good
man…..inter racial romance is my dream… so I joined —blackwhitеPlanet.С0M—–it’s where to- connect
with beautiful and excellent people!, I wish Emily a shanah

that’s sweet, if she to what is sweet is not averse.

Miltonb says:

One of the nicest people I have met in my 38 years in book publishing is Dr. Ruth Westheimer. She was warm and empathetic. What more could you ask of an author? A true mensch.

Why does Tablet — or anyone — give space to Shalom Auslander? He has no point to make other than a continuing immersion in his Jewish self-loathing. If he hates being Jewish so much, why does he keep his name? It’s one thing to take issue with aspects of Jewish practice or culture; another thing entirely to wallow in self-indulgent victimhood ad nauseum.
Your readers deserve better.

Joshua Cohen, why be so ridiculous as to suggest resolution making is either “goyisher” or “narrischkeit”??? This only makes me suspicious that you’ve never given serious consideration to the reflective, re-aligning work of Teshuvah…

hash brown says:

See ‘kooloytoyra.blogspot.com’

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What To Do in 5773

Dr. Ruth, Shmuley Boteach, Mayim Bialik, Shalom Auslander, and 23 more on ensuring a meaningful year