She’s Got A Knife And She Knows How To Use It

For all of (two of) you who enjoyed my rant on who’s performing ritual circumcisions these days, you know that I have a uncharacteristically traditional preference for the Orthodox guy in the black hat.

female mohelHowever, after reading this article on female mohelim, I concede that having a lady perform a brit milah isn’t such a big deal, especially if the alternative is having the boy snipped unceremoniously in a hospital.

You may be wondering, But how it can this be kosher? After all, she doesn’t have a penis!

Well, it is — or it’s not not kosher, anyway. Of the two mentions of brit milah in the Torah, one was performed by our man Abraham, but the other? Moses’ wife Zipporah.

Guess it’s not a man’s world after all.

*Photo c/o

Make-Up For Dummies

lipstick babyMy mother’s always been a real knockout and loves to get farpitzed (fancied-up) even to walk the eighteen feet down the driveway to the mailbox. Since the whole make-up gene seems to have skipped a generation (and apparently landed on my son, who won’t let me trim his nails unless I paint them red, but that’s a different post), she’s always after me to glam it up a little. When she comes to visit and we take the kids to play in the mud at the playground, she says to me, “You couldn’t wear a little lipstick?”

The truth is, I’ve tried. I apply the eyeshadow, I look like someone socked me with a bag of oranges. I try to line my lips with pencil and fill them in, I come out like the pill lady from Saturday Night Live. I just don’t have the skills.

But here comes Tamara Gold — gorgeous Jewess, professional make-up artist and the voice of The Red Lipstick Report. I think she just might be able to help me.

Her instruction on foundation was very helpful this month; I tend to goop myself up so badly I appear to have the kind of skin torn off in horror movies.

“Makeup isn’t brain surgery. It’s another form of creative expression,” Tamara writes on her site.

Oy, that’s my problem, Tammy! I get so creative I look I either end up looking like a drag queen or as if Jackson Pollack got whacked on heroin and went off on my face.

I’m looking forward to learning more, and perhaps, one day, my mother won’t be ashamed to be seen with me.

Osama Likes At Least One Jew

osama…or at least his book, anyway. William Blum, the author of “Rogue State: A Guide To The World’s Only Superpower” has seen the sales of his book explode after Osama bin Laden recommended it to Americans in last week’s delirious dispatch from the mountains.

Wait…does this mean Osama is starting his own book club? And if I read it (’cause now I’m interested, just like everyone else, ‘cept I’m not buying it on Amazon; that fabulous independent bookstore haven of mine already stocked five copies) and I find it interesting, does that mean I’m a member?

Oprah’s Book Club Just Got A New Member

I looked at “A Million Little Pieces” (that Oprah’s Book Club memoir about the guy who was such a crackhead drunk that he almost drowned in his own sick on multiple occasions) like, ten million times at my favorite independent bookstore over the past year and never had the urge to read it. Call me prissy like that.

elie weiselApparently, many others did want to read about how he kicked his addictions, and the book outsold everything else last year besides Harry Potter, thanks to Oprah’s testimonial. Now that The Smoking Gun (and everyone else, hence) has broken the story that the author, James Frey, made up the goriest and most dramatic parts of his autobiography, Oprah’s got some ‘splainin’ to do.

Being the mensch that she is, Oprah backed Frey up on Larry King, saying it was the publisher’s shanda that they mismarketed the story as nonfiction rather than fiction. Then, as if she were trying to show Frey and the rest of the world that some people don’t have make sh*t up; that awful, violent, criminal things happen and some authors sit down and write the stark, painful truth about it without needing to exaggerate or embellish, she unearths a humble little book that would probably have been lost in another generation had she not pointed her magic finger at it.

Elie Weisel’s concentration camp survival memoir “Night” has been announced as Oprah’s next book selection. As it was written 45 years ago when Americans were still learning the details of Hitler’s evils in Europe, we can all be pretty sure that Weisel didn’t make up the most horrible parts of his book just so he could get an advance from his publisher.

Here’s a short interview with Weisel; at 77 the Nobel Prize winner is still sharp and passionate about humanity’s capacity to achieve peace.

The Hidden Jews Of New Mexico and Beyond

No time to elaborate today, but the Seattle Times just published this article about DNA testing and how it has revealed an Albquerque reverend to be a descendandant of the Cohanim. The reverend then tested 78 relatives, 30 of whom had the same genetic marker of ancient Jewish priests. Full story.

A reader sent this link, the site of Nan Rubin, who broadcasted a series of radio shows about the secret Jewish history of New Mexico.

davey crockettAnd then there’s Donald N. Panther-Yates of Georgia Southern University and, who published this piece on crypto-Jews in Tennesee, Kentucky and North Carolina, including information on Jewish Native American chiefs (and there were many of them!) It’s a crazy long and at times convoluted read (plus some funky html issues), but there’s some amazing stuff there.

All this should keep all you crypto-philes busy for awhile!

*Photo of American pioneer and Jewish Melungian Davey Crockett c/o

Hindu Britney

britneyI happened upon an US magazine the other day at the library (okay fine, I’ll admit, I was getting my toenails done) and was just thinking how since giving birth, Britney Spears seems to have discovered a deeper skank hole than ever and fallen straight down. Quel embarrassment for the quasi-Jews!

The good news is that we no longer have to (dis)claim her as (not) one of us: MSNBC reports she’s shed the Kabbalah mantle and is now going Hindu.

T-Shirt Of the Week: Not Yo Mama’s Nice Jewish Boy

not yo mamaLooking to change your image? Wear it on your next date to dispel the notion that just ’cause you’re an accountant, you still know how to party.

Also available in “Not Yo Mama’s Nice Jewish Girl” for those ladies who think donning a miniskirt and a pair of slutty heels is too subtle.

From Rotem Gear Shop. Extra points to them for the “yo”.

And a proper English curtsey to DailyJews for the heads up.

Not Your Typical Jewish Supermodel

esti mamoGorgeous Esti Mamo has more than enviable bone structure and amazing gams — she’s got a social conscience. And she’s gonna use it.

The 23-year-old Israeli is originally from Ethiopia and is using her fame and fortune to bring attention to the alienation many of her fellow Falash Mura feel upon immigrating to Israel.

From Loolwa Khazzoom’s article:

Israeli officials acknowledge that Ethiopian immigrants have not integrated as quickly as other communities, blaming it on the cultural gap that these newcomers, who often come from poor villages in Africa, face in dealing with established Israeli society. Poverty, drug abuse and violence have stalked the Ethiopian immigrant community — because the community feels degraded in Israel, Mamo says.

She is unarguably the first Ethiopian Israeli supermodel, and says she tries to educate everyone she meets about her culture and people. Not only that, she may be responsible for the recent increase of modeling work for Israeli women of color.

And unlike other models, she has a plan for after the photography shoots, runway shows and fabulous parties come to an end and the crow’s feet begin to show: “I’ll come back to Israel and run for Knesset.”

View Esti’s portfolio here, but no slobbering, hear? Esti’s a good girl.