Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Another Upsherin

An upsherin is usually a gathering of friends and family, so it's almost always rather informal - and a bit chaotic. Makes for some interesting situations, but very spontaneous and difficult photo ops. Kids running all over, parents walking in front of the camera, that kind of stuff. And very informal lighting, so at this occasion flash was necessary. This is one of those events that is going to take a great deal of trial and error, and practice to get right.

Sunday, November 13, 2016


The great American pastime is a game that's played for about six months and culminates in a contest between two teams, one from each league, who play a series of up to seven games to determine who is the world champion. This year the two teams were the Chicago Cubs and the Cleveland Indians.

The Chicago Cubs won the world series because they beat the Cleveland Indians in four out of the possible seven games. The Cleveland Indians scored 33 runs over the course of the seven games while the Chicago Cubs scored only 27.

Does it seem reasonable that because the Indians scored more runs than the Cubs that the world series title should be stripped from the Cubs and awarded to the Indians?

Just sayin'............

Thursday, November 10, 2016

The Vote

I took walk this afternoon by Trump Tower on Fifth Ave in NYC. I usually try to stay away from politically opinionated rants. But this past election and the resultant reaction is just too much. Even so, I don't have much patience. The  uneducated seem to think that because Hillary won a small percentage advantage in the popular vote, she deserves to be called President, and that not to do so would be a perversion of our democracy. Of course, if it had been the other way around and Trump had won that advantage in the popular vote but lost the electoral college vote, these selfsame righteous liberals would be totally mute.

So for the great unwashed, here's a video to explain why our founding fathers (that would be Washington, Jefferson, Hamilton, and Madison) set up the Constitutional system of elections the way they did. And grow up!

Monday, November 7, 2016


Yesterday's post was the event.

Another young lad today. His upsherin is later this month. I had the opportunity this past weekend to photograph him with long hair. I'll post the 'after' shots at a later date.

Sunday, November 6, 2016


A Jewish boy's third birthday is the first milestone of his life. For the first three years he takes in all the sights and sounds around him, and his parent's loving care. He's a receiver. But at age three, he becomes a producer and becomes ready to share his unique gifts. For the first three years, his hair is allowed to grow without cutting. On his third birthday, friends and family are invited to a hair cutting ceremony, in Yiddish it's called an upsherin. From here on, the boy wears a kippah and tzitzit (ritual fringes) and is slowly trained to recite blessings and the Shema (the most important words in Judaism). He begins his Jewish education and the world begins to benefit from him.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Sukkoth - Part 3 Hashanah Rabbah

The festival of Sukkoth comes to a close today with the celebration of Hashanah Rabbah. During Sukkoth celebrants circle around the torah once while holding the lulav and esrog, but on the last day we do it seven times.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Sukkoth - Part 2

There are three common symbols of the Sukkoth holiday: the Sukkoth, the Lulav, and Esrog. What they mean and how they are used can be explored here. Very observant Jews try to find the most perfect components with which to make up the Lulav. The Esrog is a citrus fruit, much like a lemon, the most beautiful examples of which are grown in Calabria, Italy.

Before the holiday, the main thoroughfare of Borough Park, Brooklyn is lined with tables selling all the components, and people examine in the minutest detail to her sure of no imperfections.