Monthly Archives: July 2010


We don’t need an English editor, right?  I wish I could conquer concur.

More of the Dance Festival

Well, they can’t all be shlaggers: The Festival Ballet of Hungary featured superb dancers and good music, but the choreography was totally lame. The first men’s ensemble (bare chests and leather armbands) looked like a bunch of gay Nazis on speed, and the lead dancer resembled some psychotic version of Richard Simmons.  Audience loved it, though, esp. when the choreographer, the world-famous Iván Markó, came out and made nice with everyone.  La la la.

Karmiel Dance Festival

A glutton for dance: Well, that’s how I feel after seeing three events in one day. Carmen, a one-woman show, combined story telling, dance, film, and music.  Very nice.  An extra surprise was to see Yitzhak Navon (president of Israel about 30 years ago) sitting in front of me. Can you imagine a former US president wandering around with no bodyguards, no entourage, no fanfare?  Very cool indeed.

Second in the lineup was an amazing performance of traditional Indian dance by two young women. The costumes were great, plus they explained the meanings of the moves.  One specialized in dance from the south, the other from the north. The intricate finger movements were mesmerizing.

This evening was the big shmaltz-out with the Israel Ballet.  Tutus, toe shoes, the works. Nicely done. Since the Karmiel Dance Festival usually focuses on modern dance and ethnic (aka “folklorico”) stuff, the traditional ballet choreography was a breath of fresh air.

Organigan to the Rescue!

Thank you, Galil Tzmachim! Kudos to the incredibly patient and knowledgable gardener at Galil Tzmachim (the nursery at Misgav). She recommended a natural material made by Organigan (an Israeli company) that should work on my whitefly infestation. (BTW, turns out that whitefly in Hebrew is ash hatabak.) Ironically, this woman looks a lot like my Seattle friend Megan who is also a whiz with all things green.

Naughty dog alert:  I ran into a friend on our morning walk. She was with one of her grandkids, a little toddler clutching a large pastry. Suddenly, I saw that Terri was chewing and gulping, and that the kid was sans sticky bun. She (the toddler) looked a bit confused, and Terri looked a bit guilty. But only a bit. Problem with most dogs is that they bolt their food, which is one of the reasons that they can get poisoned. They gulp something down before they realize what it is. Dogs also have a very poor sense of taste. Despite their incredibly powerful sense of smell, dogs have very few taste buds compared to humans, which is yet another reason why they can gulp down the most disgusting things.

A global class: My latest class for STC has 32 students spanning 7 countries and 13 time zones. Tres cool. While waiting for class to start, I played some Israeli music for them, and then a classic Turkish song. (The guy in Turkey was very impressed.)  We’ve five students from India, so I’ve promised to play Indian music next week (and yes, I have some). It is probably a major culture shock for some of the more insular American students.

Belated Happy Tu b’Av! It has turned into Israel’s version of Valentine’s Day (the secular name for the holiday is yom ahava, or Love Day). Shmaltzy love songs on the radio, specials on chocolates, adds for flowers, romantic get-aways, etc.  Since our holidays are tied to the lunar calendar, Tu b’Av syncs with a full moon, and last night it was an absolutely magnificent moonrise. Terri and I celebrated with a long walk and extra parmesan on our pasty.

The Money Shot

Say “Milkbone!”  Yes, we’ve got some really cheesy centerfold poses going on this morning.  Not sure why, but Terri arranged herself on a pile of cushions and posed. Tell me you don’t want to rub that belly!

Wild West typography: It isn’t often that two of my passions (typefaces and 1960s American TV westerns) are combined.

A Biblical Garden

It may not be paradise, but…: We enjoy the benefits of a hot climate.  On our morning walk, Terri and I pass fig trees, passiflora (passion fruit), olive trees, dates, and more. This morning, I scoop up one ripe passiflora and one ripe fig.  Lovely.  You can’t do that if you live in Michigan!

There is a lovely hike in Nahal Amud that includes a small bustan (planted garden). It has been lovingly filled with all manner of fruits and herbs that were mentioned in the bible, including figs, dates, pomegranates, grapes, and more.

Rants ‘n Raves

Rave: Best wishes for a happy anniversary to two terrific parents

Rant: So don’t use your turn signal, you selfish, thoughtless, oblivious oaf!  Let me stand here, loaded down with bulging sacks of groceries, waiting for you to pass.  Then go ahead and blithely turn before reaching me. And another big rant for the moron who pulled out from the turnoff to Yuvalim and turned left right in front of me, forcing me to stomp on the brakes.  And you looked right at me before you did it, too, you idiot!

Rave: Dog. Empty peanut butter container.  Do the math.