Or a lunatic, extremist or just someone whose opinion you would dismiss were you really to know him. Like the famous 1993 New Yorker cartoon, where one dog explains to the other that "On the Internet, nobody knows you are a dog," we are inundated today with information from sources we know nothing about. So though it is unlikely that the blog or column that you are reading actually was written by a dog, it is more than possible that it was written by someone with a personal or political agenda.
Three years ago, we were sitting around our offices dreaming up an end-of-the-year issue, inundated with examples from other magazines: The Ten Best Movies, The Ten Richest Angelenos, The Ten Most Powerful Hollywood Players, The Ten Top Restaurants, The Ten Hottest Bars and et cetera.
Since these lists are both celebration and statement, we decided we wanted to promote something a little different. What if a list championed a Jewish value, not people, things or bars (not that there's anything wrong with them....)?
Hoping to raise money for a three-day bike ride over Labor Day to benefit the Jewish environmental organization Hazon, Ariela Pelaia turned to her blog.
This speech, by writer/editor/blogger Esther D. Kustanowitz, was delivered at the 2007 General Assembly convened in Nashville by United Jewish Communities as part of the "Next Generation" plenary. At the plenary, a range of young Jewish and Israeli activists, bloggers, an Oscar-winning filmmaker and others described their visions of community building and the power of the collective.
My poor handwriting quickly morphed into a sans serif, size-10 font and postage became obsolete. What had gone into my diary, I started blogging; what I used to hold inside, I'm e-mailing; and when I used to call to say "hi" and plan, I'm texting. Enter the almighty Smartphone and high-speed Internet and suddenly, I'm compelled to my QWERTY.