* Rabbi Kalman Topp is off to a great start at Beth Jacob. He seems warm, sincere. He gave an excellent sermon. He has big shoes to fill — previous rabbis of Beth Jacob include Steven Weil, Abner Weiss, Maurice Lamm.
* The Robertson Blvd front of YULA girls school has been a filthy trash-strewn mess all summer. Don’t they have any pride? In front of the ashrams, it is clean. In front of the Jewish school, it is filthy. (PS. All cleaned up now!)
* A few years ago, Orthodox synagogue Bnai David-Judea was lucky enough to have a billboard for "The 40 Year Old Virgin" across the street. Now the billboard is for Hustler Apparel.
* How loud are you allowed to bang on a wall or table on Shabbos before such banging is considered forbidden (and akin to playing a musical instrument)?
* Why do we say in the Aleinu prayer, "we bend our knees before you," but in doing the prayer, we bow without bending our knees?
* I asked a bloke on Shabbos, "What work do you do?" He replied that he doesn’t talk business on Shabbos. I find this pretentious. There’s no better question for locating a person than inquiring about his line of work. If I then proceeded to try to do a business deal with him, then I could understand the response, "I don’t talk business on Shabbos."
* Many of the smartest unmarried men I know take the worst care of themselves. Intellectual bachelors are a menace. Unintellectual bachelors are a menace too. Rabbi Steven Weil is right.
* The last time I got meaningful mail on my MySpace account was March 2. By contrast, my Facebook account is a constant source of stimulation for me.