Our childhood, the ‘do-over version:’ Brought to you by my sister and starring my niece & nephew

It wasn’t until my niece and nephew were 10 and 8 that my life was in a logistical and financial place to take a week off and fly from Milwaukee to Edmonton to visit them. My brother-in-law, who travels a lot, was going to be gone even more often that month and my mother had mentioned … Continue reading Our childhood, the ‘do-over version:’ Brought to you by my sister and starring my niece & nephew

Giant erasers, mean girls and shag carpet: A Dispatch from Misfit Hell

“And I never forgot how that year after Dad died and we lost our house, my best friend moved away and the youth group turned its collective back on me felt (picture one of those cartoons where Daffy Duck is standing on a cliff and the giant eraser comes and suddenly there's only duck and … Continue reading Giant erasers, mean girls and shag carpet: A Dispatch from Misfit Hell

Teenage dating bans and skewed ‘benchmark Jewish male’ standards: A Dispatch from Misfit Hell

I don’t remember the exact point when my father announced that dating non-Jewish boys was off the table for my sister and me. It was before I started high school. Dad’s explanation was simple. Refusing to officiate at weddings in which the bride or groom wasn’t Jewish (if the bride or groom converted before the … Continue reading Teenage dating bans and skewed ‘benchmark Jewish male’ standards: A Dispatch from Misfit Hell

The rabbi’s kids and Christmas trees: A tale of forbidden lust

When we were little, my sister and I really wanted a Christmas tree. We did not want Christmas. We had no problem with Christmas, but we were perfectly happy with Hanukkah. We liked being Jewish. We loved potato latkes and we got eight night’s worth of presents. So we never felt as if we were missing out … Continue reading The rabbi’s kids and Christmas trees: A tale of forbidden lust