Thursday, April 30, 2009

Spring, Euphoria

Thank you dear friend
for sharing as much
on this most glorious of days
A poem, like the sun,
that reaches to our touch

Of all the countless gifts
G-d has bestowed
There is nothing quite like Spring
The world awakens!

On a day like today
(still) having radio is a gift
albeit near antiquated,
for it lets your eyes, mind open,
'llows imagination to drift

(A Prairie Home Companion
is just the right muse
Be it with a cozy winter beverage,
a rain-soaked Autumn reflection
Happy days or blues)

As a child I'd lay
on a Spring afternoon
The bedsheets are crisp, the house glimmers,
aromas of Pesach, swiftly approaching;
Soon, soon!

Yet the clatter in the kitchen
seems miles away
My world is my clock radio, the azure blue sky
the voice of the Yankees;
It's opening day!

Through the crack in the window
I can almost smell the game,
as if through the air we share, the scent of Spring
I can almost see the sell-out crowd
shouting for Bernie! Tino! O'Niel!
Soon will come the crack
now comes the swing


Sunday, April 26, 2009

R.I.P. Baseball

Empty luxury seats at the opening series of the new Yankees Stadium

(Blogger's Note: Please excuse the overly bitter tone; it just came out this way and I lack the "hey-scheck" to change it)

Serves you right, you stupid, stupid people. You built a stadium for millionaires. Forever your approach has been single-minded; revenue, revenue, revenue. Even when you make your B.S. statements about how you’ve made some of the seats more affordable then they were before, it’s all with one thing in mind; keep the little guy happy as well, after all... someone needs to sit in the upper deck.
It’s all very logical, less seats in higher demand equals more dough then the other way around. And of course if you’re paying $2,000 to watch an overpaid, overrated team you shouldn’t have to sit next to a guy who doesn’t quite fit in his seat, doesn’t quite know when to stop buying $8 beers, and doesn’t quite know how to keep his dirty mouth shut. Purely logical. So build them a stadium within a stadium, guarded by ushers who will make sure no one who can’t afford to, won’t even pass in front of you. After all, why pay $2000 for a view just to have it obscured. Purely logical.

You forgot one thing though. You forgot how baseball was built, from the bottom up. The game was where the factory worker could leave his harsh world behind for a few hours of entertainment, excitement and a hope for victory. Where the kid who slaved all week hawking newspapers to buy a ticket for a buck twenty five came to dream. Why did he come? Because no matter how destitute the reality at home was, he could leave it behind at the majestic gates. Gazing upon the green field of his dreams, it was just him and his heroes. True, he wished he could afford a better seat, but it was still worth it. He may be too far away to see who was up to bat, but there was one thing he and the guy sitting in the box seat had in common, they both shared the same fence. Together they shared the joy, the sighs, the cheers, the tears, laughter, heartache. Together they prayed, hoped, swore, and knew that this year, this year would be different.

Baseball didn’t survive the depression because they raised the prices on the luxury boxes; it survived because everyone knew they were always welcome; at home. Where any kid could feel like a million bucks because he got The Mick’s autograph. (Today you can still get an autograph, if your parents are rich enough to buy The Mick so you can get close enough to the field) The field was a haven, an escape. But even baseball can’t escape greed. We loved the game so much, we allowed it to outgrow itself; greed feeding it like a drug. Like an artificially ballooned 70 home run hitter, the sport has spun out of control.

It's no wonder all across America baseball playing fields sit vacant, while the game prospers in third world countries. For a passionate player you need passionate fans who dream of becoming that player. And to attract those fans you need passionate players, not millionaires of whom you spend most of your time worrying about whether they will get injured or not.

R.I.P. baseball, I’ll miss you so much.

p.s. On a lighter note:


Why Do We Eat?

Cute, very well done

How Jews Eat from on Vimeo.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Nigun ShVY"T (AKA "Tatenyu") ~ Cello

Chabad niggunim on the cello... why didn't anyone think of this before??

The haunting sound of the cello so perfectly captures the mood and character of the old-country niggun. Yet, the manner in which it has been recorded would have offended it's composers.

Perhaps it is symbolic of how the the movement has evolved. Although we pride ourselves in practices that Chabad'a founders may have considered sacreligious, it is still nice to know that the more things change, certain thing stay the same; just like the eternal purity of a niggun.

What do you think?

Friday, April 03, 2009

Ach... So Simple...

Signs of the Times

The only music I pay for these days is in the subway, go figure

Metropolitan Diary: You Coulda Fooled Me

Dear Diary:

My husband, Daniel, works on the 41st floor of an office building in Times Square, overlooking the Hudson River.

When US Airways Flight 1549 made an emergency landing in the water in January, Daniel and some of his colleagues gathered by his window. A co-worker walked by and asked, “What’s everyone looking at?”

“A plane just landed in the river,” Daniel answered.

“Oh, I saw that a few minutes ago,” said the co-worker, who had just moved to New York from California. “I thought it looked a bit weird, but then I told myself, ‘This is New York,’ and I just went back to work.”

-Rebecca Wolf

Metropolitan Diary: Uptown, Downtown


Recently I was standing on the corner of Prince and Mercer Streets in SoHo, not far from where I work, enjoying the lunchtime ambience. A gentleman came up to me and asked me if we were in TriBeCa. “No, this is SoHo,” I responded. “TriBeCa is south and west of here,” pointing in that direction.

He thanked me and asked which way it would be to Greenwich Village. I pointed north and showed him where he could find the East and West Village neighborhoods. Lastly, he asked me which way he would have to go to find Chinatown. I pointed south and east of where we were standing. I was happy to be able to offer a little help to a visitor.

“I’m not from around here,” he explained. “I’m from the Upper East Side.”

-Steve Cytryn