Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Crazy hours

I was speaking to someone I know who recently left Lakewood. She had been living there for about 9 years and has recently moved out.

She was telling me the typical day of the average kollel guy or Rabbi (her husband) in kollel community...
- Wakes up early, runs to catch minyan.
- comes home, has breakfast, runs to morning shuir.
- comes home for dinner time, stays for about an hour, and then goes for maariv and night shuir.
- comes home about 11 (depending on who he speaks with etc)

She gave me exact hours, but I'd be lying if I told you I remembered them (which is why I didnt post them). But I do remember that she pretty much just sees her husband that one hour for dinner, and then from 11 till they go to bed (which varies on the night of the week), and then fully on shabbos.

This lady who was telling me, has spent her entire married life, seeing her husband with these teeny amount of hours... meaning their first year of marraige.

I cannot fathom how a marraige can possibly function properly, if the couple sees each other soooo seldomly. Especially the first year of marraige... how in the hell can they possibly get to know each other, with hours like that? Can one even say they're living with each other, or just AROUND each other like roommates?

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Normal Frummy

I was given a ride home from a coworker of mine. He's a very nice, succesful frummy. He's your typical do-gooder (and I mean this in a good way).

In the car he was telling me about how his first year of marraige he was in kollel. He said he couldn't handle it. He was unable to bear the burden, knowing his (and her) parents were supporting him. He said he couldn't handle it for more than one year. He wasn't able to go out to eat, or buy a soda from a local bodega knowing that it was a luxury his parents had to work hard to provide for. So he didn't do things like that. He said rent he was able to accept because he told himself they were providing for the Torah Learning. But he couldn't bear anything other than that. He couldn't justify it to himself.

Imagine if all learners (and many non-full-time learners as well) had that kind of regard for other people's money... Maybe the economic crisis wouldn't have hit as hard as it did in the community...

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

The Fountainhead

So far, after Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell- The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand is my favorite book of all time.

The Fountainhead was written by a woman who was so anti-communism, she became a liberatarian. Ayn Rand was like the Liberatarian. Her views on everything (in my opinion) are quite awesome, but so extreme that most of them cannot be feasable. (fun fact: Alan Greenspan was one of her friends/followers, attended her funeral and used her philosophy in alot of his work).

Anyway, the book is full of incredible quotes. The first "quote" is probably my favorite of all time, and describes the vast majority of frum people quite well- I'm going to copy the dialogue:

person 1- "...but I guess thats what the public wants."

person 2- "Why do you suppose they want it?"

person 1- "I don't know."

person 2- "Then why should you care what they want?"

person 1- "You've got to consider the public.:

person 2- "Don't you know that most people take most things because that's what's given them, and they have no opinion whatever? Do you wish to be guided by what they expect you to think they think or by your own judgment?"

If you're reading this and cannot fathom why I think person 1 is a typical frummy, while person 2 has a brain (and is not so typical), then you're probably just like person 1.


The following is a quote that I just adore, because it describes how I feel about frum people everytime I'm surrounded by to many of them (at various events or at shul and the women only talk about their hair, make-up and diets). As you read it, please substitute Peter for "Frummy" (I didnt wanna kill the quote so I left it original).

"You- Peter, you're everything I despise in the world and I don't want to remember how much I despise it. If I let myself remember- I'll return to it. this is not an insult to you, Peter. Try to understand that. You're not the worst of the world. You're its best. That's what's frightening."