Friday, September 22, 2006


The Jewish New Year is an extremely introspective time of the year. There's no countdown. There's no champagne bottle. There's no midnight kiss.

There's prayer. And lots of it.

I don't spend many of my waking hours thinking about religion and my role as an observant Jew, but this time of the year never ceases to unnerve me. Especially with the concept of mortality and the passing of my father still weighing heavily on my mind. Rosh Hashanah was the holiday we spent the most time together, sitting next to each other, side-by-side for hours in synagogue. Now I sit alone. And as the years pass, I find myself increasingly conscious of my own place and relevence in the world. Maybe I even have the what-does-it-all-mean moment.

I had dinner with Erin last night. Erin just got back from Minnesota after attending the funeral of her thirty-one year-old ex-boyfriend. Her ex died from a heart-attack when his arteries with a ninety percent blockage couldn't hold anymore. You have no idea how much this shook me. While I only knew her ex peripherally (we met at a show once), it's still incredibly sobering to hear that someone my age died. Even the morning after, it's nearly unfathomable that someone that young (young!) could wake up unbeknownst to him that it's his last day on Earth. Like Alphaville said, forever young.

Now I don't mean to be such a downer here. I realize that no one likes rain and parades and the combination of the two, but as mentioned, introspection is inherently tied to this time of year. As you can tell from a majority of my writing, I hate introspection. I'm all about the ridonk. But, we've just finished a year in the Jewish Calendar and we embark on another. Now what? Looking back at our lives in a fast-rewind fashion like Tivo function, ultimately, what's been accomplished?

I find it so funny (not ha-ha) that in the January 1st-New Year, we do our best to distract ourselves with alcohol and parties. Maybe this is simply to avoid thinking about our time passed (another year?). Maybe we flood our consciousness with beer so as to avoid the cruel reality of our looming and expanding to do-list. Paradoxically, every Jewish New Year, I think about everything and everyone (yes, even you). Frankly, it's overwhelming. But as much as I think about my friends and how much good I want for them, I also think a great deal about myself and my future. And every year, I swear, year after year, that this one will be different. This one will be spectacular. This year will be huge.

Well, here's to huge.

Happy New Year to all. Yes, even to the gentiles.

Part II: Song Of The Day

Considering my serious lack of time today, I am posting Song Of The Day now.
Ben Gibbard says it best, "So this is the new year. And I don't feel any different."

Death Cab For Cutie - "The New Year"


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