Joe Jacobi's pain as he prepares for the Olympics is more emotional than physical.
The canoeist/kayaker, 34, told JTA by e-mail that as he prepares for the Olympics in Athens, he misses his 3-year-old daughter, Seu Jane -- named for the Spanish village that hosted some rowing competitions in the 1992 Summer Games -- who is at home with his wife in Tennessee.
The pursuit of an Olympic medal usually conjures up a youthful single-mindedness, but like Jacobi, many of the 15 Jewish athletes competing for the U.S. team at the Athens Games are veteran athletes who competed in previous Olympics.
It may be the season for planting trees, but Yosef Abramowitz is pushing for sundae-making this Tu B'Shevat. In what he calls a "revamped" and "recast" seder in honor of the New Year of Trees, Abramowitz and the staff of BabagaNewz, an educational magazine for Jewish kids, are teaching would-be arborists to plant "seeds of hope" in the form of nuts and candy, using cookie crumbs instead of dirt, and wishes instead of water.
Spiritually devoid? Downright ridiculous?
Jewish groups are pleased with President Bush's initiative to give illegal immigrants temporary legal status in the United States, but they are withholding accolades until they see how Congress fills in the details.
Benjamin Brown found out a master's degree in Jewish history didn't help him much in finding a job. So a few years ago, Brown, 29, launched an employment Web site for the Jewish community, which he named JewishJobs.com. The initiative seems to have been a success: Brown not only secured a job at the now-defunct United Jewish Communities' (UJC) Trust for Jewish Philanthropy, he has attracted more than 6,000 job seekers to his service, which boasts a testimonials page of happily matched employees and employers.