I thought I was going to be single forever, I’m not talking about cowering in an overcrowded apartment in Washington heights making small talk with girls half my age and wondering if I was making a good impression – forever. I’m talking tree hugging in Yosemite, mountain biking road trips, and hitchhiking up and down the California coast – forever. I was doing perfectly fine, living on a borrowed Ikea futon in an old office in an old shul in San Francisco, sneaking downstairs in my underwear to use the bathroom and taking showers at friends houses. I was paying off my loans, working 30 hours a week and wondering whether to backpack in the Sierra or the Southern Cascades each week. Then, when I least expected it, wasn’t necessarily looking, the Lord plopped the love of life down into my midst and everything changed. [click to continue…]


The things that lead to mixed dancing

what leads to mixed dancing
Thank you to Rachmuna Litzlon for providing this helige piece of teirah.
Find out more on 4torah.com


charedi boys looking at girlsI’ve come to realize that most of the shocking commentary that I read about goings on in the frum community doesn’t really effect most people on a day to day basis. Unfortunately or not this includes me as well, I just worked 70 hours in 5 days and in that time I obviously didn’t have much time to be shocked about the latest frum guy to molest some kid or not give a get to his wife. I didn’t “hear” or think about any scandals, IDF draft/civil wars with the charedim, or about how some Rabbi said some racist thing that we all need to act shocked about. In fact, I didn’t even have the time to formulate a contrarian opinion that would stir the pot and piss people off and make them laugh. In the end, I came to realize that I’m only really “shocked” by what’s going on far away from my little shtetl when I log on the internet and read about it on Facebook or in the Blogging world. [click to continue…]


On this episode of Up Close, we hear directly from a woman “chained” in her marriage and whose husband is now marrying someone else. Lonna Kin has been trying for ten years to get a Jewish divorce, or get, from her now-ex-husband. She separated from her husband, (Israel) Meir Kin, in January 2005, and their civil divorce was finalized in May 2007. Yet Meir Kin has yet to give her the Jewish divorce document that would free her from her Jewish marriage and allow her to perhaps remarry and move on with her life — even though as this interview airs he is scheduled to marry another woman. Lonna is known as an agunah, or “chained woman,” stuck in her Jewish marriage. She shares her story, for the first time, in this episode of Up Close.

Because of the importance of the topic, we are making the complete interview with Lonna Kin available online in the special extended webcast of the episode above.

And then, what do we mean when speak about “evil?” Why do we act immorally, and why do some of us do so more than others? Author Andrew Michael Flescher offers some answers to these questions in his new book Moral Evil and on this episode of Up Close.

Watch highlights from the episode in the video above, listen to the complete audio of this episode at the very top of this post, or subscribe to our weekly audio podcast at http://feeds.feedburner.com/tjcupclose or on iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/tjcs-up-close/id807702211.


Can porn save shabbos?

shomer shabbosHey Hesh,

I have an interesting situation I thought I’d share with you. A friend of mine recently admitted to me that he breaks shabbos to look at porn on the internet. I was a bit shocked that someone could be so addicted to porn that he would break shabbos to fill his needs, but I looked around the web and apparently this addiction is no joke. I remember a few months ago when you wrote about how frum Jews were keeping the print porn industry alive and I was wondering if you think that it would be muttar to buy my friend porn magazines so that he doesn’t break shabbos. [click to continue…]


Do you have megillah attention deficit disorder?

Everyone does…but in this rant I also go through the lack of homemade hamentaschen and the fact that when they are homemade, the dough to jelly ration is too high. All along the secret to good hamentaschen was butter, but I wasn’t working in the food industry in 2008.


The world of casinos is one of entertainment and creating experiences for people that they will never forget, however this definitely comes at a price that many casinos have been ignoring for a long time. With large casinos being very opulent in the way that they run this means that they are not very environmentally friendly and so are being criticised in many of their practices. This is something an online casino like Jackpot City does not have to worry about as they can provide casino games to people around the world with very little impact on the environment due to the casino being run from a single server. However there are many casinos now trying to improve their image by changing the ways that they use energy as well is the ways that they can gain energy in a more economically friendly way. [click to continue…]