The Shmooze

Why is Rachel Weisz Wearing a Cross Pendant?

By Renee Ghert-Zand

Getty Images

We’ve noted the recent trend of non-Jewish celebrities and public figures wearing Jewish jewelry. Remember Sarah Palin’s big Magen David pendant and Elijah Wood’s ring inscribed with a quote from Pirkei Avot? Now the Shmooze wonders why Jewish actress Rachel Weisz has started the reverse trend by wearing a cross — and one that costs $6,400.

Weisz, whose full name is Rachel Hannah Weisz and who refused to change her identifiably Jewish name for the sake of her career, can be seen in the Wall Street Journal’s latest glossy fashion supplement modeling menswear-inspired ensembles. The attractive actress looks great in all those tailored pants and jackets, including one outfit comprised of a jacket by Michael Kors, a The Row t-shirt from Barneys and trousers by Pringle of Scotland. The text with that photo also mentions that her bra (noticeable through the sheer t-shirt) is by Dolce & Gabbana and her pendant (that would be the aforementioned cross) is by De Beers.

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Up For Grabs: Bernie Madoff's Monogrammed Velveteen Slippers

By Dana Shay Ipri

Want to walk a day in Bernie Madoff’s shoes? Now you can. The Wall Street Journal reports that over 400 pieces of Madoff’s personal property will be sold at auction next month, including Madoff’s monogrammed velveteen slippers. Other auction items include the desk where he did business, a diamond engagement ring (reportedly 10.5 carats) and a Steinway grand piano. All of the items will be sold during a live and online auction, held in New York on November 13 by the U.S. Marshals Service.

These high-priced items were seized from Bernard Madoff’s New York City and Montauk, Long Island, homes, following his criminal prosecution last year. The first government auction of Madoff’s possessions took place one year ago; expected to bring in $500,000, it raised more than twice that amount.

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Mosque Debate Focuses Attention on Bloomberg’s Judaism

By Nathan Burstein

Leave it to a debate over a mosque to refocus attention on Michael Bloomberg’s Judaism.

New York City’s mayor has returned to the national spotlight in recent weeks, as controversy has escalated over the so-called “Ground Zero mosque,” the proposed Islamic cultural center that would be built two blocks from the former site of the World Trade Center. Bloomberg, raised in a kosher home in Medford, Mass., has prominently defended the project, declaring in an August 24 speech that “[t]here is nowhere in the five boroughs of New York City that is off limits to any religion.”

While Bloomberg’s religious background isn’t exactly a secret, his outspoken support for the center has renewed interest in his beliefs. An August 28 article in the Wall Street Journal examined the mayor’s upbringing and observance in adult life, noting his childhood Hebrew school attendance but reporting that Bloomberg is now “more likely to show up in church” for a political event “than be spotted at Temple Emanu-El, the Upper East Side reform synagogue to which he belongs.”

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RIP, Heeb Magazine

By Karen Granit

Another magazine bites the dust.

This time it’s Heeb, which announced today that it will move to an online-only format.

In a statement on its website titled “So Much for Controlling the Media,” Heeb’s publisher and editor-in-chief, Joshua Neuman, wrote:

I have some good news and some bad news.

The good news is that Heebmagazine.com will continue to provide trenchant analysis of world events, cultural critique of all that is Jewish and Goyish and countless photos of scantily-clad Israeli models. …

The bad news is that we are suspending the print edition of Heeb Magazine.

Heeb was launched in 2001 by Jennifer Bleyer. Its covers have featured comedian Sarah Silverman posing nude behind a sheet with a hole in it, Roseanne Barr dressed as Hitler baking “Jew” cookies, and Jonah Hill putting KY Jelly on his morning bagel.

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