Thursday, October 23, 2014 Tishri 29, 5775

Carin M. Smilk

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Who among us isn't mystified by the allure of water? A babbling brook, an ocean wave, a cool pool, a hot shower -- even the fountain in the local mall has a certain appeal. It can give pause to the bustle of everyday life; it can make you stop, stare, even spur you to toss a coin into its midst...
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Eli Wise likes to tell this story -- well, he does and he doesn't. He likes it because it epitomizes the high-tech world in which we live today, and he doesn't like it, because, well ... A friend of his called and said, "My son had a paper to write and I was able to help him get the information...
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And then there were 14. Twenty-six people were supposed to participate in the Philly Pride Mission, the first-ever gay and lesbian mission to Israel sponsored by a local federation -- in this case, the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia. In theory, it was groundbreaking; after all, you'd expect that "first" to go to San Francisco, New York, Miami, even Chicago...
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Elad Fishfeder is your typical Israeli. He's swarthy, thick-haired, lithe, with that hospitable persistence all too common in the Middle East. "Take a paper, take one," he says. "Here, one more even," insists the 30-year-old writer. He's typical, all right, save for an important difference: Fishfeder is religious, and he's also gay. Wearing a kipah and all that it entails...
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Batten down the hatches, and crunch the cash flow
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It's happened to all of us. Or at least, we've heard of it happen to someone we know. It's not the worst thing in the world, but for a time, it sure does pack a punch. Getting laid off -- for any reason -- stinks. It puts a dent in your wallet, your plans, and certainly, in your ego. Even...
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