Category Archives: Friends

A Poignant Evening With Jews Fleeing France

Last Shabbat, my wife Karen was out of town. Close friends, unwilling to let yours truly endure a Shabbat dinner alone, invited me for the Friday night meal. Also present was a family from Los Angeles: a physician, his mother and his two daughters. The physician, Dr. M., was born on the Tunisian island of […]

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Larry Elder Lecture Huge Success

Yesterday, Sunday June 7, was the Twelfth Annual Ariel Avrech memorial Lecture. Larry Elder, the Sage of L.A., spoke about the New Black Anti-Smitism. But Larry’s talk was far more personal than standard politics. Larry spoke lovingly of the Jewish State, a trip he took to Israel in his youth, and a rather unique, if […]

Also posted in Ariel Avrech Memorial Lecture, Family, Israel, Jerusalem, Larry Elder | Tagged , , , , | 28 Responses

Prayers for David

David Rottenstreich , a young man from the Hillcrest community in Queens, is critically ill. The family have asked that I link to their blog so my readers can be informed and recite the appropriate Tehillim, Psalms. Please click here.

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Seraphic Secret’s Secret Sofer

The secret sofer, scribe, working on a Torah. And you shall write [the words that I command you today] on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. —Deuteronomy 6:9, 11:19 So Karen says that it’s time to check the mezuzahs in the house. The halacha, Jewish law, teaches us that the lettering of […]

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The Battle of Algiers Never Ends

Synagogue in Algiers. “What year were you expelled from Algeria?” “In 1956, the F.L.N. told us that we were not really true Algerians.” “What were you?” My luncheon companion, a handsome man in his late 60’s, smiles broadly: “Filthy Jews.” “How long did your family live in Algeria?” My friend sits back and ponders a […]

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Passover 2008

Amsterdam Hagadah, 1695. “A few years ago, my father was in surgery for ten hours. It was an extremely complex operation for a very serious tumor.” Karen and I are paying a shiva (condolence) call to a friend in the community, a prominent physician, and as he speaks about his father his voice drops a […]

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The Son of Stranger Among Us

Lee Richardson as The Rebbe in A Stranger Among Us, 1992. “Excuse me sir, I was wondering if you would mind changing your seat?”“Um, what’s the problem?” The flight attendant glances nervously over her shoulder. I follow her gaze to a rather beautiful young woman who just might qualify as a contestant for America’s Next […]

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Baby Jake Arrives!

Mazal Tov to Seraphic Friends Jake and Adar Novak, proud parents to Yael Amira, which means to rise with strength. This beautiful name lovingly compliments her sister, Jordan Ahava, which means flowing with love. Baby Yael Amira weighs 7 lbs. and is 20 inches. Mother and child are doing just fine. Dad is floating in […]

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Merry Christmas, 2007

Karen and I wish all our Christian friends a very Merry Christmas. We thank you for your friendship and for your support. And here’s a wonderful blog post about why Jews should all be saying Merry Christmas and not Happy Holidays. I have come to see quite clearly that even if there are politically correct, […]

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The Battle of Be’er Sheva: Once Again

This wonderful post from my good friend Treppenwitz. Treppenwitz recounts a proud day for Australia, an observance of the 90th anniversary of the Battle of Be’er Sheva and the magnificent charge of the Australian Light Horse. By the way, Treppenwitz is too modest a man to tell you this, but you should all be aware […]

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Fire: Up Close and Personal

This from Seraphic friend Karen, who has been a faithful reader and commenter for several years. Karen is a firefighter and is now with thousands of other heroic firefighters battling the hellish Southern California blazes. We thank Karen for her hard work and for taking the time to report on the situation from the front. […]

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Shut-up, Shut-up, Shut-up!

“What seems to be the problem?”“The spinning soccer ball is showing up way too often, and the computer is just generally sluggish.”“Okay, open her up, let me take a look.” I’m sitting at the Genius Bar of the Apple Store. My life depends on my Powerbook and I’m worried that maybe some sectors of the […]

Posted in Friends | 32 Responses


“My favorite thing in your blog is the How I Married Karen series.”“Oh, thanks so much.““Which is why I’d like to ask your advice about my girlfriend.” Karen and I are attending a wedding and a Young Man has just introduced himself to me, tells me how much he enjoys Seraphic Secret. “I’m not a […]

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Seraphic Secret, Jake Novak , Rupert Murdoch: The Untold Story

We’ve been waiting to let you in on Seraphic Secret’s secret connection to the Rupert Murdoch takeover of the Wall Street Journal. Here it is: Jake Novak, frequent Seraphic Secret contributor and commenter has accepted a position as an Senior Producer at the FOX Business Network. There, he looks forward to helping Rupert take over […]

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Call for Community Prayer

I have just been informed that a very young child from our community nearly drowned on Thursday. She is now on life support at Cedars-Sinai Hospital. Obviously, her medical condition is dire. Please daven, pray, for Batya Rafaela bat Hadassah. Thank you.

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Jake Wins!

Mazal Tov to Seraphic Friend Jake Novak for winning the LA Press Club Award for his comic strip “Shmooze or Lose.” Click here for the link, scroll down to “D$ Editorial Cartoon” for the citation and comments. Jake is a frequent Seraphic Secret commenter and contributor; his words always provide a unique perspective on all […]

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The Kesher with Kesher

Honestly, I expected her to be John Wayne tall. Reading her posts all these years I’ve been really, really, really intimidated by her incandescent intelligence and serene ability to cut to the heart of the matter in all things. “This is one smart woman,” Karen said after reading a Kesher post that dealt with Israel […]

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Bollywood in Shul

“Robert, what are you doing?”“Copying the source sheets?” Rebekah, office manager of my shul, looks in horror at the neat piles of paper at my feet. Originally from India, Rebekah speaks the King’s English; she sounds very BBC. In fact, I’m so intimidated by Rebekah’s sophisticated speech that my Brooklyn accent mysteriously grows thicker, my […]

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Jake Gets Some Respect

Seraphic Secret would like to extend a huge mazal tov to Jake Novak for being a finalist in the Los Angeles Press Club Awards for his wonderful weekly cartoon, “Shmooze or Lose: The Misadventures of a Hollywood Studio Executive.” Jake has been a good friend to Seraphic Secret from the time this blog went on-line […]

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Memorial Day

Karen and I wish to thank Seraphic readers who are members of the armed forces, or who have been members of our armed services. We also wish to thank all the family members of those who serve for they too sacrifice on a scale that is unimaginable to civilians. We cannot imagine the charnal house […]

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