Archives for December 2007

Most Popular Posts of 2007

I just realized that I haven’t provided the end of the year roundup of the most popular posts of 2007. In order to provide the most accurate and comprehensive report we had three of the seventeen long time readers review the logs and tabulate the totals,

A couple of ground rules to cover with you. We mulled over whether to include blog carnivals among the totals, After careful consideration we said what the hell.

I have hosted Haveil Havalim about 11 or 12 times now. These posts always are among the most heavily trafficked not only when they are originally posted but long afterwards as well. For the sake of example these all continue to drive traffic here.

Haveil Havalim- The Plain Edition,
Haveil Havalim #106- Terrible Twos Edition
Haveil Havalim #54 Big and Beautiful
Haveil Havalim #61- Call Me Roger Maris
Haveil Havalim #72- Handed Down From the Mountaintop
Haveil Havalim:Number 97 A Sunday Special

And now here is a rundown of some of the most popular posts of 2007 based upon traffic numbers.

  1. What Are Your Favorite Song Lyrics?
  2. The Sopranos Finale
  3. How to Make Hard Boiled Eggs
  4. Saddam Hussein Execution Video
  5. Besheret- The Concept of Meeting the Perfect Mate
  6. Cruising At 34,000 Feet
  7. Today Is Link To Jack Day
  8. Morality Without Religion- A Comment to The Self-Righteous
  9. Name a Song That Makes You Cry
  10. Alone In The Dark
  11. Pressured into Parenthood- A Guest Post
  12. Teach Your Boy to Pee Like a Man
  13. Why The Baal Teshuva World Irritates Me
  14. How Personal Should A Blog Be?
  15. Going Commando
  16. The Day School Dilemma- Paying For Private School
  17. The Ginsu Knife
  18. A Little Digestive Distress- Chicken Vindaloo
  19. The tears that do not fall
  20. I Am Puzzled By Some Things
  21. What do you Call Your Blog?

Also just for the heck of it I am going to include some of my own favorite posts of the past year. They may not have been the most popular, but I like them.

The Golden Age Of The JBlogosphere
A Play In Three Acts
Jack And The Missionary
The Heart Wants What The Heart Wants

Where Babies Come From

When Does A Cow Not Say Moo

Name Five Movies That You Can’t Stand

Who Remembers Richie’s Pizza?

Taking Stock of Life- A General Accounting

Suha Arafat Wants To Share Her Wealth With Me

My Wanderings

Jack Versus The Hacker

It Is Only Two Bucks

The New Coke of Blogging & Random Thoughts
Is Your Life What You Expected It To Be?

What Is The Hardest Thing About Blogging?

Why I Quit Blogging

Ok, I have grown tired of going through the archives. This should do it for now. Happy New Year folks.

Almost Another New Year’s Eve

Sometimes the hardest post to write is the one in which I try the hardest to be the most profound. I am not sure why I bother, ego I suppose. It is nice to feel pride in my creation, to look at it and know that I have produced something beautiful. But that defeats the primary purpose of this blog which is to serve as a record of my thoughts and feelings regarding a particular time or event.

I rather enjoy being able to search the archives to see what I wrote about on this day last year. I mulled over trying to do a similar roundup to the one I did last year but frankly I just didn’t have the time to do it. Maybe I’ll get around to it later, but I doubt it.

It is well after midnight here and I am wide awake. I enjoy this time of night immensely. And now for a musical interlude courtesy of my iTunes shuffle. I’ll let you dear reader identify the song:

I hear the drizzle of the rain
Like a memory it falls
Soft and warm continuing
Tapping on my roof and walls.

And from the shelter of my mind
Through the window of my eyes
I gaze beyond the rain-drenched streets
To England where my heart lies.

My mind’s distracted and diffused
My thoughts are many miles away
They lie with you when you’re asleep
And kiss you when you start your day.

And a song I was writing is left undone
I don’t know why I spend my time
Writing songs I can’t believe
With words that tear and strain to rhyme.

And so you see I have come to doubt
All that I once held as true
I stand alone without beliefs
The only truth I know is you.

And as I watch the drops of rain
Weave their weary paths and die
I know that I am like the rain
There but for the grace of you go I.

These milestone posts are kind of fun, even when I feel like I have got nothing left in the tank. I am privileged to have some of the finest friends anyone could ask for. For years we gathered every New Year’s Eve and celebrated. The first official party was twenty years ago. We were in college. Those of us who went to school out of state made a point of coming home for the party. It was important. It was special. It was needed. It was where we reconnected and reaffirmed our friendship.

Perhaps that sounds goofy, or strange or melodramatic. But it is accurate. Through the years the party grew in size. We met new girlfriends/boyfriends and shared our lives. There was laughter and there were tears. Over time the girlfriends/boyfriends morphed into husbands and wives. Some of the marriages ended in divorce. Cancer took one of us, suicide took another. Some of us lost parents and we held their hands and later we cheered when their children appeared.

Twenty years later the party is no longer a given. It survived a good 15 or sixteen years of uninterrupted celebration, but eventually things got in the way and we failed to keep it going. Ok, that is not entirely true. The streak was broken but we did bring it back a time or two and we’ll do it again.

The party is not dead, it is just waiting for someone to take charge of it and make it happen.

And that ties into something I told my son today. We had a long conversation about life. I told him that it is important to remember to take control of life or it will take control of you. I didn’t say that we can control everything. I told him that there are a lot of things that happen that you can’t control, but you can control how you react to them.

I explained that we can do our best to try and guide our lives and do the things that we want to do, that make us happy and that is why school is important. Learning is a tool. It is something that we can use forever to help us do things that make us feel alive and involved.

Just before the kids went to sleep I took an extra moment to give them another kiss and another blessing. I told them that you can make your dreams come true, even if you have to go to Texas, Kalamazoo or Kathmandu. All you need to do is believe, make a plan and execute it.

I should add that in the morning I promised to help the big kid look up the word execute in the dictionary. And I should also add that the little genius asked me if the rabbi knows what it means.

I may manage to come up with another post or two before the new year comes, but if I don’t let me say Happy New Year. May 2008 be a better year for all of us and the one in which we see the fulfillment of our dreams.

Jews- The Interdenominational Melee

Sometimes I wish that I could spend my day blogging because there is just too much to blog about. Unfortunately I haven’t won the lottery yet so I have to limit the amount of time in which I sit here.

Not to mention that I intend to watch my Lakers take on the hated Celtics so this post is going to be shorter and a bit rougher than I would like it to be. On a side note this is one of the things that I like about blogging. I like to do kind of a free flowing, thought association, compose at the keyboard kind of a thing. It may not be as elegant, eloquent or as pretty as I’d like, but it has its own advantages. More on that later. You can find some insight on my thoughts about this at Why I Blog.

Three recent posts caught my eye:

All JBloggers are not the same
Interdenominational smackdown
Exploding Myths

All three of these posts touch upon differences in opinion, some of them quite severe. As I read through them and the comments I wondered how many people just reacted. Did they mean what they said. Did their choice of words convey an accurate portrayal of their opinion.

Sometimes it is hard to tell. Maybe they did mean it exactly as I understood it. And in some cases that was tinged with disappointment. But my purpose is not to point fingers or chastise, rather it is to say that it is this interaction with others that I appreciate. Especially from shall we say, a religious perspective. It is not uncommon or unusual to have persons of differing political opinions gather and speak upon a topic.

Religion, er, Jewish denominations is a different bag altogether. RWAC’s comment serves as a good example as to why you rarely see interdenominational gatherings.

But the cost is high: Either the integrity of Orthodoxy or the unity of the Jewish community will pay the price. I will either sell out Orthodoxy or bash everyone else.

To be clear, I am not bashing RWAC. As the 17 readers of this blog know the good Rav not only provides good blog fodder, he has good taste in film and I like him. I think that we could be friends. Pause for the cyberhug of friendship. Oy, does that sound cheesy or what.

Anyway, the Jblogosphere provides an excellent forum for us to gather and exchange ideas, especially for those people who are hesitant to engage in these types of discussions. It is the Marketplace of Ideas at work and that I think is a very good thing for all of us.

Family Pictures

Want to see some great family photos? Click here. If you haven’t been to cleveland these will help give you a feel for the place. 😉

Hat Tip to R.R.

Abandoned By The Jblogosphere?

Smooth Stone has a post that is worth a read. What do you think?