I have about the most flexible ethics around.
It must be all the yoga.
It’s way too easy for me to justify doing anything that feels good.
Hence, I consistently act like a pig in my own community of Pico-Robertson. I chase women (now that I’m 43, they get away from me pretty easily, oh, to be young and fit). I take way too much pleasure in baiting people. I love to incite arguments. I love to challenge authority. I love to drive my rabbis crazy. I love to do more damage to myself than to anyone else (with the exception of those I’ve written inaccurate and damaging things about, that’s just a horrible example of my character flaws for which I will have to account to the community today and the Almighty tomorrow).
What’s saved me is my friends. They’ve let me know when my zipper was down. They’ve let me know when to let my guard down. They’ve let me know when I’ve needed to lift my game. They’ve sponsored my conversion to Orthodox Judaism. They’ve sheltered me with Sabbath and holiday meals and integrated me with their families. They’ve made me feel human.
I am not an animal!
I feel like a freak much of the time. About the only time I don’t is when I’m at yoga.
It’s really hard for me to connect with people. For one thing, I get antsy when I’m in a group for longer than a couple of hours.
I’m really theoretical about connecting. I write endless blog posts about it. I read books on picking up chicks. I go to therapy. I inflict myself on way too many people and shuls who don’t want me.
I beat up on kindly rabbis.
When I’m rude to you, I’m trying to connect. I’m not trying to blow you off. I’m trying to trigger an interesting discussion, something beyond what is polite. I want to get to the nitty gritty. I want a connection that counts. I want to pour my soul into yours.
It’s almost Rosh Hashanah and I am just so particularly grateful to my Orthodox friends in Pico-Robertson. Most of the people I most admire are Orthodox. It’s a big reason why I affiliate Orthodox. I want to surround myself with people I admire and I become more like them.
The rest of the time I want to hang with writers. That craft is as important to me as Orthodox Judaism.
I want to dazzle you.