San Francisco’s J. newspaper catches up with the Jewish veterans of the “Summer of Love” 40 years later. Chabad of San Francisco Rabbi Yosef Langer recalls the influence that the era’s music had on him in the days before he turned on to Orthodox Judaism. “My entry to self-realization was through music,” he tells J. “I saw Hendrix, Janis Joplin, the Grateful Dead. There was a special vibe in the air. Everyone was on the magical mystery tour.” The organized Jewish community also took note of the then-burgeoning counterculture: In September 1967, J.’s predecessor, the Jewish Bulletin, ran a story on the Orthodox Union’s Torah Guide on Sex, published to keep “abreast of the contemporary ‘love generation.’”
A friendship that began at Temple Israel in West Bloomfield, Mich., led to a miraculous – and life-saving – kidney match. The Detroit Jewish News has the story.
Move over 50 Cent and Gwen Stefani: The iPod isn’t the sole province of pop idols anymore. The L.A. Jewish Journal informs us of some more worshipful audio alternatives: iDaven and the ShasPod.
Jason Maoz, the resident sports fanatic at Brooklyn’s Orthodox Jewish Press, takes a fascinating look at professional basketball’s forgotten Jewish past: “Mention the names Leo Gottlieb, Sid Hertzberg, Ossie Schectman, Ralph Kaplowitz, Nat Milotzok and Hank Rosenstein, and the image that probably comes to mind is that of the board of directors of a Florida retirement village rather than half the roster of the 1946-47 New York Knickerbockers basketball team.”
The New York Jewish Week reports on the Israeli invasion – of Manhattan’s jazz scene.
Tracking down kosher food and a minyan during a busy workday can be a challenge for observant Jews. But that’s not the case in the Wi-Fi Professional Building in Skokie. The building’s name, The Chicago Jewish News reports, “doesn’t refer only to the fact that wireless Internet is available there (although it is). Rather it’s a contraction of the names of the owners, Rabbi Tzvi Feiner and Yitzy Weiss.” The building is home to some 25 Orthodox-owned firms and includes a Jewish study hall, synagogue and kosher deli. “We have a beautiful building that really sanctifies the name of G-d,” Feiner tells the newspaper. “Gentiles come in and they’re extremely impressed that you can be an observant Jew and not sacrifice the business and professional world.”
Some New Jersey lawmakers are up in arms over a proposal to give $100,000 in state funds to a nonprofit group that has honored Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan and incendiary Newark poet Amiri Baraka, The New Jersey Jewish News reports. Editor Andrew Silow-Carroll patiently explains to the leader of Women in Support of the Million Man March why Jews feel that Farrakhan and Baraka are more zeros than heroes.