Trust me, there are no rules about bar or bat mitzvah speeches. As a b’nai mitzvah teacher who has spent 25 patient years coaxing, wheedling and threatening his lovable students, I promise you there are no rules about that post-haftarah speech. In fact, there are few rules about the...
Boston bombing jury hears of grisly deaths, defense calls first witness
Producer Harvey Weinstein investigated for alleged sexual assault
One dead, one hurt as two try to ram U.S. spy agency gates
The Republican road to the White House runs through Israel
Germanwings crash pilot previously had suicidal tendencies
‘The Daily Show’ chooses Jon Stewart’s successor
Is U.S.-Israel crisis a speed bump or sign of a long-term conflict?
Netanyahu to visiting senators: Proposed deal ‘paves way’ for Iranian bomb
July 9, 2008 | 9:44 pm
March 13, 2008 | 6:00 pmBar mitzvah audiences are no longer what they used to be. No more the simple Saturday morning minyan -- a tight cluster of worshippers -- who halfway through the service are thinking of the pickled herring and egg salad to follow. Today in many synagogues, the ceremony has all the...
September 27, 2007 | 8:00 pm
Listen my children, and you shall hearThe purpose of this speech is to prepare you for your bar mitzvah. And to let you know -- as Noah thought when he received the blueprints from the Master Shipbuilder -- this ain't gonna be easy....
The bar mitzvah course that we shall steer.
May 12, 2005 | 8:00 pm
"Come to New Jersey," my grandaughter said, "we're having a simcha!"
A wedding? A lottery win? She doesn't explain. Then I think, airfare $240, motel $220 and then there's expenses for my lovely wife -- hair, nails, Louie XVth gown. This will run me $962!
I ask a dozen probing...
September 2, 2004 | 8:00 pm
Miss Smith, my third-grade teacher at Vollentine Grammar School, stood facing the class with her arm around my shoulders. She was a large woman the size of two or three of today's fashion models, with gray hair pulled back from a ruddy, round face. All I knew of her personal life was...
August 12, 2004 | 8:00 pm
Since, as the Torah says, "Confession is good for the soul," let's begin with a confession. I am a bar mitzvah teacher. My avocation -- my hobby -- is the navigation of Jewish girls and boys through the tangled web of the bar mitzvah ceremony.
It is a job that demands a great deal...