I probably should have taken this picture while the candles were actually burning :)
And how the hell do you spell Hannukah anyway?
By the way, this is one of those "paint your own ceramics" job. Ya like?
Someone thanks you for holding the bus door open for them. Hahahahaha!
I'm going to presume that no one is commenting on my journal because it keeps timing out, rather than thinking that you guys don't like me anymore :(
Anyway, I hope to have all this crap resolved by the end of the holiday, with a new webhost that isn't wonkey.
I'm off to the south on Monday morning, and will be running around like a chicken with my head cut off until then, so I probably won't be updating much until I get to heewig's on New Year's eve.
If I don't post until then, I wish you all a terrific holiday season!
Both Heewig and I are having serious issues with our sites, which is making posting a bitch and a half. Hopefully we'll be able to solve the problem shortly.
I was walking around Nachalat Binyamin, an outdoor artist market in Tel Aviv, when I happened upon this table. The artist embeds various items in wood, and every one of her boxes had something cute inside. She was gracious enough to let me photograph her wares, and this picture happens to be perfect for the subject of childhood.
Edited: Hahaha! You all understood that I was referring to the pacifier INSIDE the box, rather than the Carlsberg caps ON the box, right?
BDI informed me at the end of the day yesterday that she won't be here today. Not that I didn't rejoice, but leading up to that announcement, she spent the entire afternoon engaged in a rather unusual project. I couldn't understand who would give her something like this to do. She had a big bristol board on her desk, and she kept enlarging some sort of map on the photocopier, cutting it out, and pasting it onto the bristol board. (All of this was done using school resouces, in case you're wondering - and not that I don't, but I don't do it using 2 hours of paid work, in plain sight for all to see.) Anyway, it took me a while to figure out what was afoot. Turns out she's taking the day off to go to various day care centres in the hopes of finding a location to place her demon spawn. I then realized, from having seen her computer screen in previous days, that she's been working on this little project for the last three days. I should let you know that BDI's husband is on "paternity leave", and is a "graphic designer", so I'm quite uncertain of why *she* had to spend so much time on this little project. I mean, it's not like this city isn't split into grids and no place is particularly difficult to find. No, BDI must travel in her car with a big ass bristol board to point the way. Idiot.
The truth of the matter, though, is that this doesn't even anger me. It entertains me. The depths of her ineptitude astound me anew with every passing day.
Oh, and also, I'm revamping the textbook she put together the summer before last. It. Is. So. Horrible. I've never seen such a poor job of word processing and design. The sucker will be unrecognizable when I'm done with it. Whee! I get to work on another book!
I'm rather busy at work these days, so to keep you entertained, here's a picture my brother took of Old Jaffa, as seen from his office window.
Look at me! With the categories! And I did it all by myself!
Now if only I can figure out how rachelleb does that nifty photo thing with an entire album in the pop up window...
About bloody time. Let's hope, however, that this isn't what'll get the stupid shrub reelected.
I'm in an odd mood at the moment.
There's a teacher at my school that I really like. She has a really pleasant and friendly disposition, and she kind of lights up the room whenever she walks in. Not in a flashy "I'm here" kind of way, but just in the way that she smiles and laughs.
A while back we had a staff party, and that was really the first time that I spoke with her more than just in passing, and it came up in conversation that I grew up in Sinai. When I told her this, she became very excited and told me that she, too, had lived in Sinai, and knew exactly what it felt like to be ripped away from your home.
A brief and very simplified version of the story of Sinai:
In 1967 Israel was simultaneously attacked by the armies of Egypt, Jordan and Syria. Israel was able not only defend its borders, but also to conquer the Golan Heights from Syria, the West Bank from Jordan, and the Sinai Peninsula from Egypt.
In the early 70s, the Israeli government began to settle these areas. My parents moved to Sinai in 1971. We lived very close to the southern end of what is now known as the Gaza strip.
In 1979, Israel and Egypt began peace talks, and it was decided that Israel would return Sinai to Egypt in return for peace. All Israeli settlements were evacuated in 1982, and razed to the ground prior to being returned to Egypt. My family moved in 1982 to a farming community not too far north from what is the current border.
All settlers who were evacuated were offered both a cash settlement, and easements with respect to land ownership if they moved to a farming community within the new borders. Most people accepted the offer. There was, however, a very strong resistence movement against the withdrawal from Sinai.
The resistence movement included many of the local residents, but it also included many people who moved to Sinai just a few months before the final withdrawal date, and squatted in homes that had been left behind by departed settlers. Near the end, things got really messy, and the Israeli military had to remove many of the people from the area by force. (I should note that my family was not part of the violent protests.)
Anyway, back to the story about the teacher. She told me that she too had experienced the withdrawal from Sinai, and how deeply it scarred and affected her. So here I was, thinking that we really had a lot in common, and how fantastic, blahblahblah. Turns out her parents brought down her and her six siblings to the main town near us (a place called Yamit - not huge by any stretch of the imagination, but a city nonetheless) and they squatted in some of the empty buildings for two months, and were part of the big resistence movement.
When she first told me this a few months ago, I was a little annoyed, because I really don't think she has the slightest clue of what the whole experience meant to other people. She could hardly refer to a place in which she spent two months as a home. She wasn't born there, she didn't have any formative experiences there. Really, she was there for a two month vacation.
My parents built their first home together there, they had their three children there, and they spent a decade there, having taken part of the building of the first community in the entire area. HARDLY the same thing, don't you think?
When people leave a home willingly, be it to move up, or for any other reason, they always have an option to go back and point at a piece of land to say: "this is where I lived". Even if the house is gone, the plot of land remains. My parents don't have this option. They don't have where to go to say: "This is where my children were born". It's as if a decade of their life was erased.
The more I think about this, the more annoyed I get, because her words really belittle and discount the significance of the experience for my family.
I was able to sort of put these annoyances aside, but yesterday she brought me a book that her sister wrote. It's a memoir of her time there, written through the eyes of a 12 year old girl. I've read through about 4 chapters, and I realize that it's the account of a child, but the more I read the more angry I get.
I'm not saying that if you didn't live there, you didn't have the right to protest. What I am saying, is that she really has no right to compare herself to me in any way, or to refer to herself as someone who was ripped from her home.
And because I like her so much, it's hard for me to tell her this.
So I went to Costco today, to look for some storage solutions. I found none, but somehow left the warehouse with a DVD player and the Alias second season DVD set.
There's a bit of a problem, however.
My TV is 12 years old. Hahahaha! Joke's on me. I guess the DVD player will just have to sit and wait for me to save up enough money to buy a new TV.
Read all about it here.
Dear Bradley Cooper,
Would you like to come over and eat crackers in my bed?
Seriously, though, aside from being fantastically gorgeous, this guy can act better with his eyes than other people can with their whole body. The expression on his face when he first saw Syd was so intense that it burned my retinas. When he found out Alison Doren was alive, his eyes did all the talking, as well. That's some incredible talent, and JJ would be wise to bring him back permanently.
Further in the eye-candy department, Sark could not have looked hotter than when he shot Breslow in the leg and stepped over him into the warehouse. Keep those shades on, Sarkelicious.
Plot-wise, Sloane is my brand spanking new boyfriend, people. Also, this was a blissfully Lauren-free episodel. Thank goodness for small miracles.
Overall, one of the kick-assiest episodes of Alias e-v-e-r.
After a weekend of rather meh baking, in which I made chiveless chive biscuits and a rather sorry attempt at monkey bread, I present to you the weekend's success story:
Dough after rising
Egg wash and sesame
Out of the oven
And it turned out DELICIOUS!
Read more for the recipe...
Prize-Winning Challah Recipe
Source: Second Helpings, Please
1 tsp. sugar
1/2 cup warm water
1 pkg. yeast
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup warm water
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp. salt
4 cups flour
1 egg yolk beaten with
1 tsp. water
Dissolve 1 tsp. of sugar in 1/2 cup warm water in mixer bowl.
Sprinkle yeast on top and let stand 10 minutes. Stir to dissolve.
Add oil, water, sugar, salt, eggs, and half the flour, and beat well.
Mix in remaining flour. Dough will be sticky.
Cover bowl and let stand for 10 minutes.
Turn dough out onto well floured surface and knead for 10 minutes, adding flour as needed.
Round up in a greased bowl. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled in bulk, between 1.5 to 2 hours.
Punch down, cover, and let rise again until double, about 45 minutes.
Divide dough in to 3 equal parts. Shape into strands.
Place on a slightly greased baking sheet and braid loosely.
Fasten ends securely. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise until doubled.
Brush with beaten egg yolk and sprinkle with seeds.
Bake at 400 for about 30 minutes, until golden brown.
In hindsight, I just remembered a much better photo to put up for structure. Grrr. Well, here it is anyway!
This is the Esztergom Basilica outside of Budapest.
The atrium at BCE Place, Toronto
There's something I've learned, now that I work in a high school. Teachers are worse than students. In all possible ways.
They rebel against any type of authority. They whine. They use pathetic excuses, of "the dog ate my homework" vein. They skip classes just as often as the kids do.
It's really fascinating to watch from the other side of the coin. I always thought teachers really had it together and were figures to emulate. I'm glad I was so naive back then, and can only hope our students are the same.
I am seriously at the point of going ape shit on people. In fact, I just did go ape shit on someone, but she's had it coming for a long time, so she can bite me.
Is there any other way to interpret a conversation that starts with, "I'm not blaming you, but...", when the person is talking about something that you, specifically, are responsible for? I mean, they ARE blaming you, right?
My day just got back to shite: I'm being forced to listen to a West Bank settler wax poetic with some right wing rhetoric. *Stabs self in eye with heewig's ice pick.*
And better yet? BDI is in on the discussion. And agreeing with the crap. *Starts digging own grave.*
This little exchange with my brother certainly brightened up my day:
periscopeboy: there's a bunch of computer wizards working here this past week
periscopeboy: for all their technical savvy they haven't caught on to the fact that there's a button that says open door on it, and they keep asking me to open it for them
periscopeboy: fucking retards
raptorgirl: reminds me of that farside cartoon.
raptorgirl: You should find it and paste it to the door.
periscopeboy: I tried explaining to one of them, but he got confused with the plethora of buttons next to the door
periscopeboy: he turned off the light, nearly pressed the fire alarm
periscopeboy: kept pushing at a protruding piece of drywall
periscopeboy: I guess the fact that it says
periscopeboy: open door on the actual button threw him off
raptorgirl: I'm posting this exchange in myblog.
periscopeboy: have fun
periscopeboy: but censor out the retards part
periscopeboy: I wouldn't want to be thought of as insensitive
periscopeboy: at least the real retards have a genetic excuse
Except without the smile. Holy bloody freezing, Batman. I cannot understand how I'll survive this winter. I cried this morning while waiting for the bus.
Enough. With. The. Humming. BDI.
I stumbled upon this photographic scavenger hunt shortly after buying my digital camera. What a fun project! If only they had one every month, I'd have my camera permanently attached to my hand.
You can view the submissions for the November 2003 challenge here.
If you have any questions, or are wondering how in hell my pictures represent the subject, write me a comment. I'd love to get some feedback.
There's more! Click the link to see more pictures.
I'll admit to having an exceptionally short fuse today. I really have no patience for anything. I'm all stuffed up, and if it weren't for the fact that I felt bad about missing work, I'd have stayed home.
Not helping matters: