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Showing posts from July, 2007

Great Moments In Penology

pe·nol·o·gy also poe·nol·o·gy ( pē-nŏl ' ə-jē ) n. The study, theory, and practice of prison management and criminal rehabilitation. Here at the Shack we're pleased to bring you some great moments in Penology. Sure, we could be serious and cover the 1971 Stanford Prison Experiment , but what fun would that be. Instead we are going to cover great moments in music in prison First there was Johnny Cash at San Quentin and then came the masters from CPDRC. You remember them, the prison where the inmates reenacted Thriller . These fellas are quickly gaining a special place in my heart. They don't just do Michael Jackson. No sir, they also perform songs by Queen and bits from Sister Act and do the Jumbo Hot Dog Dance . Just in case you are interested in learning more about such a progressive institution they have a promotional video that you can watch here . P.S. Technically this post is supposed to deal with real prisons, but just this one time we can adjust the rules to a

It Is Broken Now

This morning was rougher than I could have anticipated. One of the things about being a parent is that even when you are doing your job well you still have moments where you just feel lost and or upset. Some of my children's relatives have decided that the best gift is green in nature. I suppose that one of the benefits of being part of a large and generous family is that in a short time the children have accumulated a nice amount of cash. This provided an opportunity for a good life lesson in which they have begun to learn about the benefits of saving money so that they can buy something nice that they might not otherwise be able to get. This past weekend my son and I were running errands when he spotted a toy that he really wanted. Initially he asked me if I would buy it for him. I declined to do so and explained that we just didn't have the extra cash to buy a toy, and besides he has some really nice stuff at home. He responded by explaining that he thought that he had

The Celtics Still Suck

In theory NBA fans should be pleased to see the hated Celtics gain an opportunity to become a player again. But I just can't get behind that. All I know is that two of the hated Celtics colluded to make this trade happen. Feh. You can't tell me that McHale acted in the best interests of his team. Bill Simmons says as much here: My NBA guide claims that McHale retired from the Celtics in 1993, but apparently that’s a misprint. How else could you explain his decision to trade Kevin Garnett to Boston for the Al Jefferson pu pu platter deluxe? Just five weeks ago, McHale and Minnesota couldn’t close a potential deal in which they received Jefferson and Boston’s No. 5 pick. Now? They’re settling for Jefferson (a potential franchise player), Ryan Gomes (an intangibles guy who’s useless on a bad team), Bassy Telfair (a year away from signing in Italy), Gerald Green (a homeless man’s J.R. Smith), Theo Ratliff’s expiring deal, a 2009 lottery-protected No. 1 pick (congrats on picking

Does Love Last?

After I wrote about my grandparents 73rd wedding anniversary I received some feedback from some bloggers who weren't convinced that people can be madly in love for that long. They said that at some point in time love dies or changes and just becomes friendship. I haven't provided a serious response to any of them because I have been trying to decide how I want to approach this topic. Love is a complicated beast and it deserves something more than throwing mud at the wall to see what sticks. At least my initial thought was to try and compose something that was based upon more than just anecdotal evidence and personal experience. It was a good idea and I even had the beginning of a reference to use. The LA Times is running an article today called This is your brain on love . "When you're attracted to someone, is your gray matter talking sense -- or just hooked? Scientists take a rational look." But like so many things in life the plan has changed, courtesy of

A Long Way to Find A Bathroom

Here is a cheap impression of Paul Harvey . Have you ever heard the expression about being up to your neck in crap? Climbers and walkers can worry less about eating yellow snow in the French Alps, thanks to the installation of two public toilets on the highest mountain in the range . Mont Blanc - Europe's highest mountain - can be saved the nickname of Mont Jaune thanks to the two public toilets that have been set up near the summit of the 4,800 metre high mountain. The latrines will be the highest in Europe, according to mayor of Saint-Gervais-les-Bains Jean-Marc Peillex, standing, or sitting if you will, at an altitude of 4,260 metres. "This move was much needed. Our beautiful mountain's white peak was full of yellow and brown spots in summer. It used to look very dirty and was also wrecking the environment," the Times of India reported Mr Peillex as lamenting. And now you know the rest of the story.

Apparently Disney Loves Me

Not unlike so many other bloggers I know I make no secret of checking my stats. You can find all sorts of interesting information in there. It is fun to see how people find the blog and what they do. Apparently the Big Mouse loves me because I see Disney in my stats virtually every day. Now if only I could figure out a way to have that translate into free passes to Disneyland. My kids would love it and so would my wallet. Do you have any idea just how much it costs to take a family of four to Disneyland. It is about $300.00 for admission. Add gas, parking, food and souvenirs and you have dropped a bundle. All for a one day adventure.

Hit By A Sturgeon

I find this to be pretty funny. Ok, it is probably not all that funny to the people who are being hit, but something about it grabs me. Can you imagine calling your boss to say that you are going to miss work because you were hit by a sturgeon. It is a brilliant excuse. I'll post an excerpt from the story. BTW, I love the graphic that says Sturgeon Zone in big red letters. It reminds me of my room in college. I had a sign on the ceiling that said Men At Work. Caught a lot of grief from that one. ORLANDO, Fla . -- Boaters and other watercraft riders are being hit and injured by giant jumping sturgeons at record pace within a 40-mile stretch of water in Florida. "People and sturgeons are colliding," Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission official Karen Parker said. Sturgeon, which is one of the oldest genera of fish in existence, have been leaping out of the water without warning and striking people. I'd like to see a newscaster say that with a straig

Do You Have An Accent

Yes, it is another recycled post . So here is the question of the moment, Do You Have An Accent? Not clear on what the meaning is, take a look at this link. accent The latter part of the definition is really what we are talking about. The word accent in English is also understood to mean the pronunciation and speech patterns that are typical of a speech community; As a child I never realized that all people have accents, or should I say that it never occurred to me that people would think that my own speech has an accent. I grew up on the West Coast, Los Angeles born and bred. We didn't sound like people from Long Island, Brooklyn, Nashville or Alpharetta. And we certainly didn't sound like we had rolled out of Tel Aviv, JoBurg, Sydney or Mexico City. To be clear, I have always enjoyed accents. It tickled me pink to hear people speak English yet sound so different. In fact, there was a point in time in which I was disappointed that I couldn't speak with an English a

An Alternate Means of Payment

This really should be the symbol at the gas station.

73 Years Of Marriage

Today marks my grandparent's 73rd wedding anniversary. They are both 93 and g-d willing are on track for hitting 100. In the interim we have, rather I have big plans for them. I am trying to convince my grandfather to start training for the 100 yard dash. The idea is that in two years we'll do a world tour in which we will promote him as the fastest 95 year-old man in the world. It will also coincide with their 75th wedding anniversary so we'll plan a big bash to celebrate that as well. My grandfather agreed to this provided that he can still walk. As an extra incentive I told him that I would personally see that anyone who was at their wedding attends the party for their 75th anniversary party. This made my grandfather laugh hard enough that his dentures flew out, which in turn made him laugh even harder. Once he stopped laughing he told me that everyone is dead which either makes me a cheap bastard or a very good businessman. Then he got very serious and told me h

The Harry Potter News You Didn't Read

If you haven't read Deathly Hallows you might want to skip this. Now that the weight of protecting her creation has been lifted JK Rowling has been sharing more information about what happened. Here is a partial excerpt : Harry, Ron and Hermione We know that Harry marries Ginny and has three kids, essentially, as Rowling explains, creating the family and the peace and calm he never had as a child. As for his occupation, Harry, along with Ron, is working at the Auror Department at the Ministry of Magic. After all these years, Harry is now the department head. “Harry and Ron utterly revolutionized the Auror Department,” Rowling said. “They are now the experts. It doesn’t matter how old they are or what else they’ve done.” Meanwhile, Hermione, Ron’s wife, is “pretty high up” in the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, despite laughing at the idea of becoming a lawyer in “Deathly Hallows.” “I would imagine that her brainpower and her knowledge of how the Dark Arts operate would

Israel & The Palestinian Authority

Dave at Israel At Level Ground links to an interesting opinion piece that was written by Khaled Abu Toameh the Palestinian Affairs correspondent for the Jerusalem Post . Within a few months after Abbas came to power, Palestinians started realizing that he was not delivering. Instead of fighting corruption, he surrounded himself with the same Arafat cronies. There was a decrease of perhaps 30-40 percent in the level of corruption but an upsurge in internal violence. The January 2006 election that brought Hamas to power was mostly about: "Let's punish these Fatah thieves." Hamas was building schools and kindergartens and clinics, while the PLO was building a casino and villas for its leaders. I believe some 30-35 percent of the Palestinians who voted for Hamas did so as a vote of protest because they were unhappy with the way the Palestinian Authority was running the show. Let Mahmoud Abbas and the PLO and Fatah start rebuilding their institutions, reform themselves, g

Incredible Sandcastles

These are amazing. They come from a contest that was held at Harrison Hot Springs .


I think that I am going to give in and get a pair of Crocs for myself. I keep hearing/reading stories about how comfortable they are and that has my attention. Fads don't interest me and I don't care much about style, but comfort is of major interest. And comfort seems to be the one thing that is always associated with these shoes. Do any of you own Crocs, and if so, what do you think about them?

Barry Bonds

In a past life I had a dream of becoming a sports writer. In part it was due to the influence of Jim Murray . The man could take words and make them sing and dance in such a beautiful way. I am not half the writer he was, not even close to one quarter. But the nice thing about writing is that is one of those skills that can improve with age and with practice. The same is not necessarily true of hitting a 90 MPH fastball. There comes a point in time in which your skills begin to diminish and you are no longer able to do what you once did. Most baseball players begin to see this change some time in their mid to late thirties. Rarely do you see their skills begin to improve. Barry Bonds seems to be the exception to the rule. As a fan of the game I'd like to celebrate this. I'd like to look at Barry with a mix of awe and envy and wish that I could do what he does. The problem is that I cannot. I cannot because he plays for the hated Giants and as a Dodger fan that is not so

Reader Feedback- I Don't Care Edition

It is time to dig out the old mailbag and share some of the feedback that I have received. Dear Jack, You shouldn't write posts about grammatical mistaiks because you make plenty of your own.... Regards, Sheri +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Dear Sheri, I am still wondering if your mistaik was intentional or not. Thanks, Jack +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Dear Jack, You used to provide more original material. What happened? See you, Trina +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Dear Trina, It is probably on the new blog. Thanks, Jack +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Dear Jack, I really don't care what music you listened to Saturday night. Singingly yours, John, +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Dear John, You sound just like a rabbi I know, but funnier. Right now I am listening to an '80s CD. In particular the song is Talk Talk by the band Talk Talk

Thoughts About Cell Phones

Just some random thoughts about cellphones. Is there a proper etiquette for handling a dropped call? That is, if you are having a conversation with someone that is abruptly ended by a dropped call what are you supposed to do? Do you immediately try and call them back or do you wait for them to call you back. Here is a slight variation on that. You're in the middle of a call when someone beeps in for the person you are speaking with. They click over and while you are waiting for them to return the call is dropped. What do you do then? You have probably noticed that some people have a habit of yelling into their cellphones. As you can imagine I have as much interest in their conversation as they do in mine. Sometimes I'll react to their actions by singing quite loudly. Other times I may respond by asking them if they still beat their wife or how do the neighbors feel about living next to a sex offender. I know, it is juvenile behavior and not very nice but sometimes ..

New & Improved Toilet- Fish 'n Flush

In a never ending quest for new and improved toilet The Shack is happy to present you with the Fish 'n Flush aquarium toilet. "Both fresh water and salt water can be added to our 2.2-gallon aquariums, but live coral should not be used. Fish 'n Flush provides a dual-filter system, making it safe for children. It also provides two nine-inch plastic plants, a fill valve, and a complete flushing system. All you need are water, fish and food. These acrylic tanks are fully functional, impact resistant and stronger than china. They are completely separate from the toilet tank and are designed to fit directly against the companion tank reservoir.'

Why I Am Not Getting Much Done

Several weeks ago I wrote about the challenge of working out of a home office. Today the challenge is even greater than normal because of a favor. A friend had to drop her children off so that she could attend to some business. The influx of children has raised the terror alert to its highest level. In fact I would argue that I have already survived numerous terror attacks. Let's use the shrieking as an example. Why dear lord must little girls shriek. My ears are ringing and the neighborhood dogs and I are considering the benefits of heading for the hills. The incessant shrieking has shattered three plate glass windows and caused every car alarm within a three mile radius to go off. But the boys are not about to be outdone by the girls. Oh no, they wouldn't consider the advantages of building a clubhouse outside. Instead they have constructed a racetrack inside the house. Since they are too big for a simple oval track they have made sure that it runs around the entire h

Obsessed With the Blogroll

I have a habit of recycling posts. This one just seemed appropriate . If you have been blogging for any length of time you probably have received an email from another blogger asking for you to blogroll them. Sometimes they phrase it differently and offer you a reciprocal link exchange. Either way the question is still the same, "will you blogroll me?" They want a link on your site that can be used by your readers to find their blog. I am a bit of a prickly and at times moody fellow so these requests haven't always fallen upon receptive ears. Sometimes I have just done it and sometimes I don't even bother to consider it. You may recall that in the past I asked the denizens of cyberspace to tell me how many blogs you read . It was a serious question that I asked because I have noticed that many bloggers have blogrolled an exceptional number of blogs and it occurred to me that it would be tough for them to read them all. So I spent a few moments pondering this and c

Things I Have Never Done

Here is a list that I plan on developing 0ver time. Here is a short list of things/places I have never done/seen: I have never seen snowfall. I have never driven in the snow. I have never been to Japan. I have never been skydiving. As mentioned above this list will grow over time as I add to it.

Tisha B'Av- Redemption

We humans are a superstitious lot. If you think about it you can probably come up with a list of ten superstitions that are relatively well known. And if you really concentrate you can probably come up with a list of personal superstitions. I know that I have my own and in spite of what others may claim it has nothing to do with OCD. Some of my fellow MOTs find the three weeks to be terribly distressing. They expect and anticipate that bad things will happen to them during this time. I can think of more than one conversation in which someone explained the real reason behind the car breaking down or a summer cold. It all culminates on Tisha B'Av. On Tisha B'Av we see the end of this cycle and the beginning of a new one. In my mind I always like to think of redemption as being the second and in some ways more important part of the day. I can attribute this attitude to how we observed Tisha B'Av at camp. The evening was always somber. We'd gather on the tennis court

Study Links Diet Soft Drinks With Cardiac Risk

MONDAY, July 23 (HealthDay News) -- Drinking more than one soda a day -- even if it's the sugar-free diet kind -- is associated with an increased incidence of metabolic syndrome, a cluster of risk factors linked to the development of diabetes and cardiovascular disease, a study finds. The link to diet soda found in the study was "striking" but not entirely a surprise, said Dr. Ramachandran Vasan, study senior author and professor of medicine at Boston University School of Medicine . There had been some hints of it in earlier studies, he said. "But this is the first study to show the association in a prospective fashion and in a large population," Vasan said. That population consisted of more than 6,000 participants in the Framingham Heart Study, which has been following residents of a Massachusetts town since 1948. When the soda portion of the study began, all participants were free of metabolic syndrome, a collection of risk factors including high blood pr

I Have To Try This

It looks like it is a hell of a lot of fun . Credit for the photo goes to Zorb .

She is a Butterfly

"Like the purest light in a darkened world So much hope inside such a lovely girl You should see her fly, it's almost magical It makes you wanna cry, she's so beautiful" She's A Butterfly- Martina McBride (Click to hear the song) This has become one of my favorite songs to listen to. It reminds me of my daughter. Not just because the lyrics do an excellent job of describing her but because every time she hears it she insists that I dance with her. And that is not something that I can refuse. My dark haired beauty will turn three tomorrow. So today we gathered family and friends and celebrated. Yes, I survived a birthday party for a three-year-old. Not only that but I survived the shrieking that seems to be part and parcel of little girls playing together. If I had planned more carefully I would have remembered to bring earplugs. Instead I'll suffer through a temporary case of tinnitus. Her birthdays are always special to me. Not just because of her

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows- A Simple Review

****There are no spoilers in this review*** Now that I have completed the seventh and final book of the Harry Potter series I have a few thoughts to share. Nothing too sophisticated or profound, just a few thoughts that are percolating inside my skull. I enjoyed this book. It was pleasurable and I am happy to have read it, but I feel a bit let down. I haven't decided if that is because I devoured the book, if I am disappointed to see it end or what. I'll give it a little more time to mull it over and digest what I have read. This much I can say with certainty. Rowling didn't catch me with any unusual twists. Nothing happened that surprised me and I was hopeful that something would. But then again some of the things that took place have been building for virtually the entire series so it is hard not to see them coming. Still the story held my attention. At no time did I feel like I wanted to stop reading or flip ahead and that is worth a lot to me. I can also say th

The Answer to Photo Friday

Here are some potential answers to David's Question .


I suppose that among the many reasons I miss my grandfather is that he knew more colorful phrases and expressions than anyone else I can think of. Right now I could use something more descriptive than saying I am having a run of bad luck. Right now I feel as if I have been jinxed. Someone hit me with a hex, a curse, bad juju, that voodoo that you do is quite frankly fucking things up with the kind of regularity that makes me wonder if karma really does exist. Ok, the truth is that I am a bit superstitious. There are some things that I have seen and experienced that I can't quite explain. The good news is that those things encompass both good and bad. I also believe in making my own luck. I know that I can turn it around. I can make things change. But sometimes it is hard to walk through mud that is waist high. Slogging through cold slush isn't fun, there just isn't anything pleasurable about it. So I am doing what I need to do to get through to the other side. I hav

Saudi Summer Marriages

Elder has an interesting story about Saudi Summer Marriages . The more I read about Saudi Arabia the more irritated I become that they are one of our allies. If you spend any time reading about the policies and positions that Saudi Arabia takes on foreign and domestic issues it becomes all too clear that they are given carte blanche to do things that would bring down UN sanctions on most countries. All because of the power of oil. It just disgusts me.

Cleveland Politics

Well here is an interesting story for you. JULY 19--Incensed by the most recent arrest of an alleged drug dealer, a Cleveland politician wrote the perp a scathing, profanity-filled letter that referred to the man as a "crack dealing piece of trash" who should "go to jail or the cemetery soon." In a July 12 letter, a copy of which you'll find below, Councilman Michael Polensek, 57, tore into Arsenio Winston, 18, after learning of the teenager's arrest earlier this month on a felony drug trafficking rap. For the full story click here.

Phillipine Justice

This is a novel punishment. Go to prison at the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center, Cebu, Philippines and dance to Michael Jackson's Thriller. Click here .

Jew Talking To Me

New Orleans — 'DO you have a pioneering spirit?" read the recent ad in the Jewish Week newspaper of New York. "Are you searching for a meaningful community where YOU can make a difference?" To generations of American Jews, the pitch had a familiar ring. But this was not an invitation to settle the Promised Land. It was a call to repopulate New Orleans, a city known less for its Jewish culture than for its shellfish, sin and pre-Lenten carnival. New Orleans' Jewish population, in fact, has long been a subtle but important ingredient in this curious dish of a city. But its numbers, though always small, have declined precipitously since Hurricane Katrina. Of the 10,000 Jews in the area before the storm, 7,000 remain. With fewer dues-paying members, some synagogues and Jewish service agencies have been kept afloat by donations from Jews around the country. But the bulk of that largess, provided by the nonprofit United Jewish Communities, dries up at the end of th

My Personality Test

Call me a narcissist, but I love these personality tests. Wandered, bumped and stumbled my way into the bar to check out the ActualMe personality assessment and was pleasantly surprised with the results. Here is the abbreviated version, which is almost way too long to share. You are a Motivational Visionary Your Communication Style A Natural People Person When you are walking down a corridor or a street, you like to greet or stop to speak to someone. People just love to talk with you about anything. That's because the positive energy that you give off during conversations develops an instant bond with everyone. You love to interact with people. It doesn't matter how many people there are or at what level you're communicating; you do it effortlessly. Conversation has been extremely natural to you your whole life. You have a wonderful sense of humor. When people are with you, they smile and laugh a lot. Whether it's telling a joke you heard before or shari

Glorifying Terrorists

Seraphic Secret has a story which is quite distressing. Recently The New York Times carried a review of a film called Hot House that goes inside Israeli prisons and examines the lives of Palestinian prisoners. We're not recommending the film or the review. But we do want to share our feelings with you about the beaming female face that adorns the article. You can see it here . The film is produced by HBO . So it's presumably HBO's publicity department that was responsible for creating and distributing a glamor-style photograph of a smiling, contented-looking young woman in her twenties to promote the movie. That female is our child's murderer. She was sentenced to sixteen life sentences or 320 years which she is serving in an Israeli jail. Fifteen people were killed and more than a hundred maimed and injured by the actions of this attractive person and her associates. Click here to read the full story . And please click here to read more about Malka Chana Roth ,

Harry Potter- Deathly Hallows Thoughts and More

Last night I finished re-reading Harry Potter and The Half Blood Prince . It was a lot of fun. In some ways I enjoyed reading it more the second time around. This time there wasn't any concern or worry about someone spoiling the ending for me. Rowling did an excellent job of creating all sorts of excitement and anticipation about the coming book. It doesn't hurt that there is an immense amount of hype surrounding the release of Deathly Hallows . If you are a fan of the series it is hard not to get caught up in it all. Not to mention that the media and Scholastic public relations department are working hard to generate more. That is part of why Rowling is asking the public to 'Help preserve the secrecy' of Potter . "As launch night looms, let's all, please, ignore the misinformation popping up on the web and in the press on the plot of 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows,"' Rowling wrote in a message posted Wednesday on her Web site, http://w

Posts That Lack Substance

I try not to waste my time complaining about other bloggers. Some of this is because of the old saw about people who live in glass houses should not throw stones and some of it is because I don't expect that my words are going to affect any sort of change so I might as well focus my energy elsewhere. Every now and then I break this rule. The most recent example is The Yeshiva Owes Your Parents a Refund in which I complained about some of the horrible writing I found on various Jblogs. The crimes against grammar and spelling are amongst my biggest complaints. I suppose that second on my list are those posts that seem to be completely devoid of logic and reason. They're usually political posts in which the author has gone on some sort of a rant about a topic. The problem isn't just that the logic and and reason are missing or questionable, it is that they haven't any factual support. There is not a grain of empirical evidence, not one shred of proof of their positi

What Is My Purpose Part 2

About 18 months ago I wrote a post called What Is My Purpose? This ties into that post because I am still searching. It is a search that began decades ago. I don't say that for dramatic effect but because it is the truth. It is one of the things that I love about blogging. I don't have just one chevrusa but many . In truth the list is abridged. I hesitate to share that because it is incomplete and I search for a complete picture. My children ask for answers and I feel obligated to provide them. Often I turn the question back on my son. What do you think? I do it because when you deal with abstract concepts it is hard to provide concrete answers. Sometimes the child's perspective is more honest. They haven't had years of life experience to prove that something has to be a certain way. It is much easier for them to just accept. I don't do that easily. I don't just accept. I fight. I fight. I fight. I battle and I fight. Wrestling is a way of life. The

Come Play Quidditch With Me

I thought that this was interesting. Dewey, a student at Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania , organizes the campus Quidditch club of about 40 Potter devotees imitating the aerial game of the book series. Although Bucknell has not played its first official game -- that is expected in September -- Dewey's club has received $150 from the college to buy supplies, including hula hoops and a volleyball that stands in for the fictional "quaffle." Also on the equipment list are the brooms on which J.K. Rowling's Quidditch players fly around during games and which Bucknell players are required to hold between their legs. Clearly there are a few things that make this game more challenging than in the book, such as the inability to fly. Each team consists of 12 to 15 players, seven of whom are on the field at a time. They include a "keeper" to defend the hoops through which scores are made; "chasers" whose job it is to put the quaffle throug

Death Is Not Good Enough For Them

I stumbled onto two articles that infuriated me today: Man guilty of abducting mom, leaving daughter to alligators MIAMI, Florida (AP) -- A man who had been released from prison early for good behavior was convicted Tuesday of trying to kill a young mother and leaving her 5-year-old daughter to be eaten alive by alligators in the Everglades. Harrel Franklin Braddy had befriended Shandelle Maycock and her daughter Quatisha. Maycock testified that Braddy went to her home in November 1998 and grew enraged when she asked him to leave. He choked Maycock until she was unconscious and then forced her and Quatisha into his car, the woman testified. At one point, Maycock gained consciousness, grabbed the child and jumped out of the moving vehicle. Braddy stopped, choked the woman again and put her in the trunk, she testified. Maycock never saw her daughter again. Prosecutors said Braddy then drove to a section of Interstate 75 in the Everglades known as Alligator Alley and dropped Quati

Things I am Thinking About

I have a number of different thoughts flowing around my mind. It is well after midnight and I really should be going to sleep. Instead I have been mulling over posts about the Nine Days, Minhagim and a half dozen other ideas. Since I haven't finished thinking things through I am going to provide some links to old posts that tie into some of these thoughts. I'll take a look at it all in the morning and we'll see if I come up with anything brilliant. Morality Without Religion- A Comment to The Self-Righteous The Future of Judaism My Brother- A Lesson in Simple Physics Twenty Five Years of Torah Reading Frum & Gay Moments When I feel Closest To G-d What is My Purpose? If things go well I'll figure out how to put all these thoughts together into a coherent and thoughtful post. Lately that has been a task. Wish me luck.

What I Listened to Today

I had planned on going to bed well before the witching hour but a double dose of the news has left me wired so here I sit. I made the mistake of reading about people who murdered children and that upset me so I am trying to just mellow out. So as a bonus you get another post to read. Here is an incomplete list of the music I listened to today. Faithfully Journey Porcelain Moby Cat's In The Cradle Harry Chapin Drive On Johnny Cash & Willie Nelson King for a Day The Thompson Twins The Other Side Aerosmith Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band The Beatles Once In A Lifetime Talking Heads Greenbacks Ray Charles Are You Lonesome Tonight? Elvis Presley All Along The Watchtower Jimi Hendrix Who Wants To Live Forever Queen Rapture Blondie So What Miles Davis

Shopping Carts

When I was a boy I used to love it when my father would ask me to "take a ride" with him. It usually meant that he had some kind of errand to run and wanted a little company. In a house full of a zillion sisters and a mother it was important for the boys to stick together, or so I thought. More importantly it was a chance to engage in what my son now calls special daddy and Little Jack time. I have vivid memories of climbing into the car and looking out the window as my dad drove. When I thought that he wasn't looking I would stare at him and try to imitate his gestures. Decades later I have them all down. When the family gathers I can bring down the house with a five minute impression of him, but I digress. Usually these errands found us in one of three places, Builders Emporium, Gemco or the supermarket and that brings me to the heart of the matter; shopping carts. Yes, that is right the ubiquitous shopping cart. The four wheeled dolly that we all use to transpor

He Is Not Really Dead

The latest issue of Newsweek has an interesting article called Back From the Dead . Some of you may be aware that I spent seven years working as a CPR and First Aid Instructor so these sorts of articles are of interest to me. This is a story about what happens when your heart stops: about new research into how brain cells die and how something as simple as lowering body temperature may keep them alive—research that could ultimately save as many as 100,000 lives a year. And it's about the mind as well, the visions people report from their deathbeds and the age-old questions about what, if anything, outlives the body. It begins with a challenge to something doctors have always been taught in medical school: that after about five minutes without a pulse, the brain starts dying, followed by heart muscle—the two most voracious consumers of oxygen in the body, victims of their own appetites. The emerging view is that oxygen deprivation is merely the start of a cascade of reactions within