Shabbat Risk

I haven’t played Risk in years. 


But my daughter and her husband came for Shabbat, and we sat down and had a great game. 


We distributed the countries. 


Placed our enemies. 


And went to battle, army to army. 


By the time it was over, my daughter had conquered Europe, Africa, and North and South Americas.


It was so good to see her taking country after country from my son-in-law and me. 


My son-in-law joked that he had underestimated her. 


We had a good laugh and nice time just sitting down at the kitchen table and playing a board game. 


Afterward, we went down to the pool and relaxed in the deck chairs and then my wife and I took off our shoes and walked in the grass in the garden. 


I laid down on the beautiful green lawn and looked up watching some planes jet over in the clear blue sky. 


It was absolutely beautiful weather and a marvelous day today with my family. 


In the morning we went to Synagogue and the sit-down kiddush with our friends.


I am grateful to G-d for all this and for the peace of the wonderful Shabbat! 


Also, what more can a man ask for Father’s Day. 😉

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Who Says Flying Can’t Be More Enjoyable

This flight attendant is terrific here. 


She delivers the typical hum-drum public service announcements in a whole new way–now (maybe) you’ll actually pay attention.


Smart cookie and fun sense of humor. 


Happy Friday and enjoy!


(Thank you to Itzchak Ochayon for sharing this with me)

When The Wires Get Crossed

So the flight coming back from Israel was technologically challenged. 


I’m sitting toward the front of the plane…more room, that’s good.


But there are a bunch of families with small children and babies…and that ends up being bad. 


The flight attendants bring out this contraption to hook up a crib device to a front wall of the plane for the parents to put the baby in to sleep. 


But there ends up being one small problem.


The overhead lights are seriously messed up.


This passenger with the baby tries to use his button next to his seat to turn the bright reading lights off–this is like row 10 or something. 


But when he hits the lights off button–instead the lights go off in row 22. 


And they stay on in his row keeping his baby awake and crying virtually the whole flight.


The stewardesses are going crazy trying to figure out where the “wires got crossed” here. 


When they go to row 22 and ask them to turn off their lights–thinking maybe that will turn off the lights in row 10 that is keeping the baby up and crying–but instead that turns off the lights further in the back of the plane in row 30-something. 


This was a really bad comedy going on this plane.


The baby keeps crying and crying.


The stewardesses keep running around trying to figure out how to get the lights working where they are supposed to be working.


And the parents are frustrated as hell trying to calm the baby and get some rest on this lengthy, cross-ocean flight. 


Needless-to-say, all the other passengers trying to get some rest weren’t thrilled at this ridiculousness going on.


The plane got us home, but the electrical system didn’t inspire any confidence and kept the baby (and us) up almost the entire flight. 


When you think that this was just the lights–oh boy!  


Because what if the wires had gotten crossed between something important like the accelerator and the brake instead?  😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

DISGRACEFUL United Airlines

To all decent human being out there…


Think twice about United Airlines. 


They overbooked a flight and then forcibly removed passengers that had paid for their seats. 


What right does anyone have to sell something that they in essence don’t have to sell?


And then treating their passengers like animals, smashing them and busting their lips, and dragging from from seats they paid for!


These passengers just wanted to go home. 


On top of it, the joke of a CEO of United Airlines, Mr. Oscar Munoz, defended this abhorrent violence against his paying passengers stating:

“Our employees followed established procedures for dealing with situations like this. While I deeply regret this situation arose [not that he regrets that they oversold seats and then beat the sh*t of this passenger], I also emphatically stand behind all of you, and I want to commend you for continuing to do above and beyond to ensure we fly right [this is what he “commends” and consider going “above and beyond” and doing what’s “right”–what a complete moral disgrace!].”


While Mr. Munoz had a heart transplant last year, apparently he truly has no heart at all–these are subhuman actions whose defense can only be considered to be the vacuum of any decency or morality in the leadership of United Airlines. 

If no passengers took their offer of $400 or even $1,000 to get bumped, then let them offer $10,000 or more–whatever the market price is to get the seat–but they have NO MORAL RIGHT to force this passenger out of a seat he legitimately paid for and was already sitting in. 


Either United Airlines should immediately apologize and extraordinarily compensate this harmed passenger, promise never to do this again, and fire their corrupt CEO or the public should boycott this disgraceful airline.


Where is the Federal Aviation Administration? 


Where is the board of directors of United Airlines?


Where is justice for this passenger and protection for airline customers?


Please G-d, justice will be done. 😉

Living In A Big F-cking Interconnected World

on-and-off

So I can hardly remember a world without the Internet, television, or travel. 


Yet if the world, as created, is just under 6,000 years old, then we only have these critical interconnections with each other for the last 100 years…that’s only a tiny fraction of world history or less than 2%!


Pervasive and invasive communications and travel like the Internet (1990), television (1927), commercial airplane (1914), and mass produced automobile (1908) have expanded our personal universes. 


Hearing stories as a kid about how people rarely traveled more than 25 miles from their villages and barely got news from far beyond that, it is very hard for me to imagine such a small world to be confined to. 


Yes, some people look back with nostalgia yearning for the simpler times and “the good ‘ol days,” but they forget how on one hand, mundane it was and on the other, how unstable and violent it tended to be. 


Now with social media, smartphones, 24/7 news coverage, and world travel, connecting with people and events irrespective of distance or even language is taken for granted, and we are always on and expected to be (the last part is one downside for sure). 


Still yet to be conquered, but I am sure not that far away, is connecting outside of our own world and irregardless of time…reach forward or back and across the vastness of the stars–it’s all one. 


Frankly, I do not know what I would do in a world limited to just 25 miles and not being able to get connected online, anytime, anywhere…what a boring and small world that must’ve been.


In the same way, once we reach beyond our own world and routinely travel to and settle on other worlds, and can reach beyond the present into the past and the future, I think the next generations will be astonished at how small we too have lived. 


25 miles…what the heck!  😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Popcorn Delight

Popcorn.jpeg

So we made it to Florida, but the plane ride was horrible.

Spent an hour and a half on the tarmac waiting to take off because of “low clouds.”

Is that for real?  

It was raining outside and the damp air and smell on the plane was sickening.

But we made it, and in Florida, it’s always happy and nice–air was warm, the sun was out, and the people were in holiday party spirits. 

Headed straight to the pool and had a great swim–pushed myself even though still woosy from the turbulent flight.

We had a nice dinner and then stopped in this store with amazing popcorn–covered in caramel drizzle and milk chocolate. 

Only in Florida (these were no Cracker Jacks)!

The lady gave me a sample and I passed it off to my daughter and wife–oops, the one with the big chocolate gob fell on the floor.

Then we passed this tattoo place and watched this guy in the widow getting a huge tattoo on his calf of this fantastical women’s face. The lady proprietor tried to convince us to come in–ah, no thanks. 

Next was a bottle of wine for the night and back to the hotel. 

Looking forward to more adventures this week. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)