Haute Fashion That’s Also Modest & Other Orthodox Jews in the News
College roller hockey teams from across the Northeast, including Pennsylvania State University, competed at an indoor arena here recently, shooting, skating and stickhandling with gusto as they battled to climb the standings and win for their teammates and for school pride. But one team, the Maccabees of Yeshiva University, was playing for something loftier — religious devotion and the quest to bring glory to Orthodox Jews.
Yiddish culture is flourishing, despite being once spoken by over 10m people. The wars of the 20th century changed that; barely a million speakers remain. But for all the catastrophes perpetrated against its speakers, Yiddish has endured. In fact, it is undergoing a renaissance.
An Orthodox Jew, public health expert Barry Pakes will not be sampling the local eskimo delicacies. But he’s helping out in every way that he can.
Yair Shahak was competing in a worldwide Bible competition in Jerusalem that one Jewish news outlet described as “sort of a spelling bee, but with biblical verses rather than words.” Or maybe “Jeopardy!” with often-complicated questions in only one category — the Bible. Specifically, Tanakh, the Hebrew Bible. (For most readers this is the Old Testament, but a couple of books in the Hebrew Bible are not in the King James or the Revised Standard versions.) In that lightning round, Mr. Shahak zipped through the first half-dozen questions. It was the correct answer — one of more than 70 that Mr. Shahak got right on his way to tying for first place. Along the way, he surpassed his wife, Yaelle Frohlich. They were the first married couple to take part at the same time, and Mr. Shahak was the first New Yorker to place first.
To an outsider walking past Chabad Lubavitch world headquarters in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, it might be difficult to distinguish any differences in the way the herds of Hasidic men lingering outside 770 Eastern Parkway are dressed. But not everyone is wearing the same exact white shirt, black suit, and black hat, as feisty and famous Israel Shemtov, a distinguished tailor and Lubavitcher can tell you.
Over the years, the center of gravity of L.A.’s Jewish community, along with that of the city as a whole, has shifted ever westward. Boyle Heights was at the core of Jewish life in Los Angeles during the late 1800s and early 1900s, and the Fairfax District could claim that title until the 1980s, but the spiritual heartland of the Jewish community is now in Pico-Robertson. This bustling neighborhood became a popular destination for Jewish Angelenos after World War II, with its rich history pointing to why it is such a sought-after neighborhood to this day.
Britain’s Got Talent Comes Under Fire From Hoax Artist Who Claims Auditions Are ‘Manipulated to Create a Narrative’
Renowned prankster Simon Brodkin claims that hit ITV show Britain’s Got Talent manipulates contestants to fit their own agenda. Brodkin posed as Orthodox Jewish rapper Steven Goldblatt for a new Channel 4 documentary, secretly recording the eight-hour audition which resulted in him receiving four ‘yes’ verdicts from judges including Simon Cowell.
Laurent Delarbre, former head of the prestigious Parisian restaurant La Tour d’Argent, has teamed up with famous Israeli chef Shalom Kadosh. Together they create kosher cooking with a French flavor at a French gastronomy festival, in which 22 renowned French chefs, some Michelin starred, take part.
It could be New York’s longest schlep: Every Saturday, young rabbis trudge 15 miles from Brooklyn to worship with some of the last Jews left in one Bronx neighborhood. The ultra-Orthodox rabbis lead a small Parkchester synagogue housed in the same ramshackle building as an Islamic school and a mosque. “It takes them four hours and sometimes the weather is terrible,” said synagogue member Harvey Weiner, 82. “But without them, we’d be lost.”
The Orthodox Jews behind The Frock NYC, Mimu Maxi Junee and Undercover Waterwear don’t point to themselves as Orthodox Jews, but they are not trying to assimilate, nor do they advocate it for anyone else. On the contrary, they want to broaden the Orthodox community or at least not lose those practitioners who are turned off by the fashion restrictions.