Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Bar Mitzvah Blues

Today marks the 41st anniversary of my Bar Mitzvah at the original Carondelet Street location of Congregation Beth Israel in New Orleans. Both my son and I happend to share the same Parsha (Torah portion) and Haftorah (Prophets reading). That portion is known as Vayikra, the first chapter of the Third Book of Moses also known as Leviticus. My son will celebrate his anniversary on March 20, just two days from now. It is interesting having that Torah portion because the name appears along the walls of many Jewish houses of worship that identify the Five Books of Moses by their Hebrew names. Beyond that, though, there's nothing much more special about Vayikra or Beresheit (Genesis), Shemot (Exodus), Bamidbar (Numbers) and Devarim (Deuteronomy) other than those are the first words in those books of the Torah. When I became a Bar Mitzvah, the biggest joke (which I didn't really get) was the one about the little Jewish boy making his speech and thinking about all of his gifts when he ascended the bimah (pulpit). "Today I am a fountain pen," the joke went. It was hilarious back then, but today, I am afraid, no one really knows what a fountain pen is anymore. Perhaps an update would be "Today I am an Ipod."
Republicans Poll: Don't forget to vote at the lower right for whom you feel would make the best running mate for John McCain. There's only a couple of days left. (Democrats can vote, but you should vote like a Republican. That means you should try to come up with the best (not worst) running mate.

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