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Ask Shifra

Something Different... Answering questions and making curious observations (online) since 2005.

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Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The Unemployment Chronicles - Week 2

Stop me before I bake again!!!

Well, week one of being unemployed went pretty well.
My kids were off from school and I needed some time to just relax so we went places, did projects, wrote book reports, watched movies and had fun. I also baked quite a bit. Chavi Kaufman likes to bake and so do I so there are now plenty of treats around the house for week two and I am home alone with all of them!

For months I'd been craving really gooey caramel-y cinnamon buns and I've been working on perfecting the recipe - I'm getting close - another batch or two and I should be there!
Job hunting is hard, and often depressing. Baking is easy and satisfying.

The trouble is I'm not quite fitting into my interview suit as it is and all of these baked good are not helping. Maybe tomorrow I'll start jogging... and working a little harder at this whole job search thing... or maybe both, but that's DEFINITELY going to require another batch of cinnamon buns, and of course a cup of coffee.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Axe Shifra (Part 2)

On Thursday morning I was laid off.

There had been rumors, of course, but you never really know until you get the call to go down to HR. I was pretty shaken, but I was given a very respectable severance package (unlike LAST TIME) so I will not have to worry for a few months and maybe I can find something that won't have me driving three hours a day.

For now I'll be doing some freelance writing (some for free, as tzedaka, and some paid) getting myself together, collecting unemployment, spending more time with the kids, and looking for work.

It times out well, with this being the kids' vacation week. Now we can have some fun together, instead of my working most of the time. Today I'll be out on a little adventure with them all day but leave me a message at the tone and I'll get back to you as soon as I can.


Thursday, January 10, 2008

A Herculean Act of Cowardice

This week a Jewish Cemetery in New Jersey was desecrated in a way I'd never seen.
90 percent of the headstones (nearly 500!) were knocked down and many smashed into pieces as they were pushed into one another.

Although this was front page news locally, it didn't even make it into the paper 30 miles away. I sent the link to Dov Bear who posted on it instantly, but popular as he, he's no CNN. Read about the 90 year old man who buried his family there. It will break your heart. My own dear friend CB has family there as well it's very upsetting. One would hope that when our loved ones are laid to rest we do not need to worry about them any longer. That they are safe and protected. The added stress of something like this is just cruel.

I don't know why I feel the need for more people to know about this.
To me this seems just huge somehow - clearly there were people pushing over headstones all night, hundreds of headstones falling and smashing, and no one called the cops.

Unable to resist, I actually drove by the cemetary myself to say some tehillim and check things out for myself. Out of respect for the families that were there to check on their loved ones I stayed in my car. Still I was able to scope out the surrounding area pretty well. Based on the location in which I found the cemetary (in a populated, formerly Jewish area- adjacent to a well traveled street, right next door to a supermarket) I found it unbelievable that all the damage was only found by grave diggers who had come to work the following morning!

To me this means, people knew and just didn't care.

I was so upset I called my father. "Why would someone do something like that" I said.
"Because they are cowards" my father replied "the dead don't fight back."

Perhaps the dead don't fight back, but we should.