• Apparently the morbid speculations about Bernie Madoff’s life expectancy before his sentencing were beside the point—word has it the conman is dying of pancreatic cancer in prison, where, strangely, some fellow inmates are “trying to kiss his butt.” [NY Post]
• Giving new meaning to “coming of age,” six women aged 79-100 recently had Bat Mitzvahs in North Carolina. [WCNC]
• Israeli President Shimon Peres’s poetry has been set to music on a new album to benefit charities worldwide; the sounds run an unlikely gamut from Celine Dion-esque melodrama to top-40 country to Euro-dance pop beats. [PRI]
• Architect Daniel Libeskind has squandered his opportunity to design a mezuzah for the Berlin Jewish Museum, creating a “glorified tchotchke.” [Architect’s Newspaper]
• In what may be either a heartening example of economic symbiosis or a sad commentary on the dependency of the occupied on their oppressors, Palestinian women have a flourishing cottage industry making yarmulkes for their Jewish neighbors. [Reuters]
• Authorities in Pittsburgh are throwing down in concern over possible violence during the G-20 summit there, which coincides with the Jewish high holidays: “If protesters show up at synagogues, they will encounter not just worshipers but uniformed police officers too.” [Pittsburgh Channel]