Rabbi Rabbs: “As if the first seven of them within walking distance of that corner and went out of business weren’t a sign that this is not a business to go into. They’ve been working on this building (on Alcott and Robertson, near Pico Blvd) to remodel it and they just put up a sign for a kosher frozen yogurt store.”
I remember a friend of mine moved from a university in Australia to one in California. And he went to work in dress shorts and received an unexpectedly large amount of derision. Dress shorts aren’t acceptable in the U.S.
Dress shorts are the way to go in Australia. Even bank managers wear them with ties.
I was shocked when I came to California from Australia in 1977 and found that it was often impermissible to wear shorts, even on the hottest of days. Long pants were required by many social situations.
In many ways, Australia is a less formal country than America.
Today it is close to 90 degrees in Pico-Robertson but you won’t find many Orthodox Jews walking around in shorts. Particularly not the women. The only Orthodox Jews who wear shorts in America are the modern Orthodox. It is a sure sign of limited Jewish religiosity.
I remember a story in Leon Wieseltier’s book Kaddish about a man coming to shul in the summer and asking whether or not to say a certain bracha (blessing).
* The ritual of the red heifer makes sense to me. The red is for blood. The ritual makes the pure impure and the impure pure kinda like garbagemen and policemen and military. Only contact with dead people is impure (Num. 19:11). Not contact with dead animals. We recoil from dead animals. We recoil from death. As we should.
* Moshe was never getting into the promised land. We all wander in the desert hoping to get into the promised land.
* Moshe’s sin wasn’t hitting the rock. God told Moshe to take his rod. Moshe’s sin was saying to the Jews, “Shall we bring forth water from the rock?”
Exodus 17 has an identical story where Moshe hits the rock.
* Moshe gets in trouble because of something he does in public. I don’t know of any examples of God punishing anyone for doubting.
* As you go through the Tanach, there are increasingly few miracles. In the later books such as Ezra and Nehemiah, there are no miracles.
* Moshe does not argue with God after he’s told he won’t get in. Moshe frequently argued with God but not here. Moshe does not resign as leader. He keeps leading the Jews.
* It bothers the rabbis of the Talmud that Moshe does not get in. There are classic midrashim on this. It is Jewish to get annoyed with God and for God to get annoyed with the Jews.
* Jews are not to conquer Canaan to take booty and to rape. No, you are to take Canaan to create a holy land that will be a light to the world.
* Richard posts to my FB: I ran into a few Jewish girls, in my day, rebelling against their secular Jewish background. Most of them, would sleep with any guy, that had a beard, and looked somewhat orthodox.
I notice very few vacation buildings in Pico-Robertson. But you go a few blocks outside of Pico-Robertson to La Cienega Blvd and east of La Cienega on Pico, and you’ll find some vacancies.
There was that great Hollywood video store on La Cienega and Pico that is now vacant as more of us get our movie entertainment from Netflix.
The Orthodox Jewish community is pushing east of La Cienega and south of Airdrome into the black community, dispossessing African-Americans and reducing the crime rate in Pico-Robertson proper. You’ll find old people walking the streets at night in the hood and that’s always a good sign.
I write about real estate, refinancing, and mortgages here:
Walking past Cashio and Robertson Blvd last night on the way to Torah Talk, I noticed that the Sephardic shul on that north-west corner was no more. The building was empty. It had signs up saying vacant.
Prior to Sephardi shul, there was a Breslover shul at this location.
Who’s moving in next? Will this holy site go for profane purposes?
I’ve also noticed that what used to be a Sephardic day school just north of Cashio, south of Pico, is no more. It has been replaced by a school teaching Spanish and Mandarin immersion.
In 2009, the Los Angeles Times’s “Mapping L.A.” project supplied these “Pico-Robertson” neighborhood statistics: population: 18,019; median household income: $63,356.
Part of the Los Angeles Unified School District, the neighborhood is served by Canfield, Crescent Heights, Shenandoah, and Castle Heights elementary schools and Emerson Middle School. The high school for the South Robertson neighborhood is Hamilton High School. The magnet school Los Angeles Center for Enriched Studies (LACES) is in the nearby Faircrest Heights neighborhood.
The neighborhood features more than thirty Certified Kosher restaurants , including delis, Chinese, Italian and Mexican restaurants, a donut shop, a frozen yogurt shop, bakeries, and butchers. The community features four men’s mikvahs and one woman’s mikvah, the largest known as the Los Angeles Mikvah. There are several Jewish day schools located in the Pico Robertson area. The Chabad community operates four schools, Bais Chaya Mushka and Bais Chana, both of which are on Pico Boulevard, as well as the newly relocated Cheder Menachem on La Cienega. Yeshiva University High School has campuses on both South Robertson Boulevard and West Pico Boulevard, in the heart of the Pico-Robertson Jewish community.
The community overall has a wide variety of Jewish denominational groups. Over the past two decades, the Orthodox community has grown to become the most largest Jewish denomination in the area. This is evident in the growth of the Hasidic community. According to Chabad , the Hasidic movement has eleven centers in the immediate Pico-Robertson area, including the two high schools, boys cheder, day school, six synagogues, and a community center. Minyan Finder reports over twenty synagogues operating in the area.
The Eighth Annual Ariel Avrech ZT’L Memorial Lecture will take place Sunday, June 5, 2011, at 10 AM at the Young Israel of Century City, followed by brunch.
Young Israel of Century City
9317 West Pico Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90035
We are pleased to announce that Yossi Klein Halevi will deliver this year’s lecture: What Is Expected of a Survivor People: Lessons My Father Taught Me.
World-renowned journalist and author Yossi Klein Halevi will address the following questions: What would today’s Jewish world look like from the perspective of a Holocaust survivor? Where have we as a people succeeded and where have we failed? For the first time in his life, Yossi Klein Halevi will confront this challenge from a very personal viewpoint — the worldview of his father, a Holocaust survivor.