When I'm at events, I'm often taking notes even if I don't have an assignment to write a story for a particular venue. It's possible that, as a freelancer, I'll find a home for any emergent stories, and I know I can always find a home for it here...So here are some musings I wrote as I attended an awards ceremony from the National Jewish Book Council last month.
"So, read any good books lately?" is probably not the best pickup line to use here. Someone might think it's clever, but would I really want to be with someone with such low standards for humor?
I couldn't be an academic because I am not well-behaved. I mean, I know better than to make fun of speakers, and I'm decently behaved initially, until you peel back a layer with a joke or a person who raises an eyebrow in sarcasm and then I'm gone.
Are we people of the book, or the word? Is the word different from the book, and are books by definition limited by covers? Do the kids today, of USY conventions, of blogs and Facebook, and of Holy Land hookups, relate to Jewish literature? Who will be the bridge between the old and new guard of what passes for Jewish literature in the modern age?
Karaoke+Prayer=Jewish a cappella. Discuss.
When you honor someone with an award, they always say "I never expected to be honored." But in their heart of hearts, many artists do want recognition for their work even if they don't actively court it. I am a writer who thrives on comments. I write because it helps me cope with life's travails, or such as they are in my particular life, but I still want publication. I don't want words to exist only in a vacuum. I want success. And if I am ever lucky enough to garner honors, will I be honest enough to admit that I didn't expect to be honored, but that I definitely wanted to be.
But where does this quest for validation come from? Is this why I like LA, because validation--if only for parking--is available everywhere?
Is love for Israel a substitute for real love? Perhaps there's something called "relative Zionism," in which you're in love with Israel as long as you're in love with something else, whether it's a person, a job, or yourself. Maybe spirituality and ideology are contingent, to an extent, on pheromones.
Nuns love God instead of men. Priests (at least those living above the law) love God instead of women. It's a completely understandable cop-out, but it is a cop-out, nonetheless.