Tuesday, October 20, 2009


The entire country is reeling from the slaughter of the Oshrenko family A'H by some foreign hit man/men. Well, at least I hope they are foreigners. I don't even want to think that these murderers walk amongst us.

Six people were butchered viciously with a knife...
the grandmother/grandfather/mother/father/three year old daughter and four month old son.

I was going to write a blog about that but words escape me. It is just too big to grasp.

Then, we have the water problem...or should I say the LACK of water problem. If it doesn't rain soon and rain a lot we are in deeeeeeep doodoo. The Jerusalem Post today writes that our options include portable desalination plants or importing water from Turkey.

Turkey??? The country we put on the map??? The one we made rich when they opened their doors to Israelis and finally we had a neighbour we could go visit which we did and did and did again. That Turkey? The one when they had that terrible earthquake and we sent in team after team to find the survivors and set up hospital tents to care for the wounded? That Turkey? Or maybe it is the one that is now showing a TV series where IDF soldiers are shooting and killing innocent little Turkish children? We want THEIR WATER?

Do you remember the scene from the movie The Color Purple where Celie is bringing Mister a glass of water? And she spits in it?


Are they nuts?

Then I was going to write a blog about how I am addicted to chocol...I mean books. I buy them. I store them. I stack them in the spare room waiting to be read.

But, when I opened my email this morning and read a post from my friend s.f.plangerl I know what I was going to blog. Here it is folks. From the Canadian Free Press:

First Lady Requires More Than Twenty Attendants July 7, 2009 Dr. Paul L. Williams
"In my own life, in my own small way, I have tried to give back to this country that has given me so much," she said.
"See, that's why I left a job at a big law firm for a career in public service, " Michelle Obama

No, Michele Obama does not get paid to serve as the First Lady and she doesn't perform any official duties. But this hasn't deterred her from hiring an unprecedented number of staffers to cater to her every whim and to satisfy her every request in the midst of the Great Recession.

Just think Mary Lincoln was taken to task for purchasing china for the White House during the Civil War.

And Mamie Eisenhower had to shell out the salary for her personal secretary. How things have changed!

If you're one of the tens of millions of Americans facing certain destitution, earning less than subsistence wages stocking the shelves at Wal-Mart or serving up McDonald cheeseburgers, prepare to scream and then come to realize that the benefit package for these servants of Miz Michelle are the same as members of the national security and defense departments and the bill for these assorted lackeys is paid by John Q. Public:

1. $172,2000 - Sher, Susan (Chief Of Staff)
2. $140,000 - Frye, Jocelyn C. (Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of Policy And Projects For The First Lady)
3. $113,000 - Rogers, Desiree G. (Special Assistant to the President and White House Social Secretary)
4. $102,000 - Johnston, Camille Y. (Special Assistant to the President and Director of Communications for the First Lady)
5. $100,000 - Winter, Melissa E. (Special Assistant to the President and Deputy Chief Of Staff to the First Lady)
6. $90,000 - Medina , David S. (Deputy Chief Of Staff to the First Lady)
7. $84,000 - Lelyveld, Catherine M. (Director and Press Secretary to the First Lady)
8. $75,000 - Starkey, Frances M. (Director of Scheduling and Advance for the First Lady)
9. $70,000 - Sanders, Trooper (Deputy Director of Policy and Projects for the First Lady)
10. $65,000 - Burnough, Erinn J. (Deputy Director and Deputy Social Secretary)
11.. $64,000 - Reinstein, Joseph B. (Deputy Director and Deputy Social Secretary)
12. $62,000 - Goodman, Jennifer R. (Deputy Director of Scheduling and Events Coordinator For The First Lady)
13. $60,000 - Fitts, Alan O. (Deputy Director of Advance and Trip Director for the First Lady)
14. $57,500 - Lewis, Dana M. (Special Assistant and Personal Aide to the First Lady)
15. $52,500 - Mustaphi, Semonti M.. (Associate Director and Deputy Press Secretary To The First Lady)
16. $50,000 - Jarvis, Kristen E. (Special Assistant for Scheduling and Traveling Aide To The First Lady)
17. $45,000 - Lechtenberg, Tyler A. (Associate Director of Correspondence For The First Lady)
18. $43,000 - Tubman, Samantha (Deputy Associate Director, Social Office)
19. $40,000 - Boswell, Joseph J. (Executive Assistant to the Chief Of Staff to the First Lady) 20. $36,000 - Armbruster, Sally M. (Staff Assistant to the Social Secretary)
21. $35,000 - Bookey, Natalie (Staff Assistant)
22. $35,000 - Jackson, Deilia A. (Deputy Associate Director of Correspondence for the First Lady)
This total damm near $1.6 Million Dollars, that’s just sick!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

There has NEVER been anyone in the White House at any time who has created such an army of staffers whose sole duties are the facilitation of the First Lady's social life.. One wonders why she needs so much help, at taxpayer expense, when even Hillary, only had three; Jackie Kennedy one; Laura Bush one; and prior to Mamie Eisenhower social help came from the President's own pocket.

Note: This does not include makeup artist Ingrid Grimes-Miles, 49, and "First Hairstylist" Johnny Wright, 31, both of whom traveled aboard Air Force One to Europe .
Copyright 2009 Canada Free Press.Com canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/12652

Have a great day...stay safe...and thanks for dropping in.

Friday, October 09, 2009


I'M SPEECHLESS...........

have a great day...stay safe...thanks for dropping in.

Sunday, October 04, 2009


Wanna hear a nice story? I mean a really nice story? Of course you do!

About a month ago I got an e-mail from a lady named Donna. Now, my very oldest and one of my very best friends is Donna, but she goes by Sydonia. So, it couldn't be her. Besides, the first sentence of the email went something like this: "Hi, Marallyn, my son Lee is coming to Israel..."

God forgive me, but that is where I stopped reading, and thought Oh no! Another teenager on his way for a week or two in the Holy Land and I don't think I even know this kid.

Anyway, I continued to read--and lucky I did. You ready for this? Donna went on to say that her son Lee was being flown into the country to do the sound for the Leonard Cohen concert and was I interested in two tickets if he could get them for me.

Have I got your attention yet?

OHMYGOD! Who is this Donna and how did she find me and is this a prank like 'Guess what Marallyn, this is your lucky day. Your name has been picked from a gazillion people and if you only phone this number in the Netherlands, you will receive a swimming pool filled with money.' You know about those emails. I am ashamed to admit that once I really did phone that number. Sigh.

But, then Donna went on to say that she was really sorry that I couldn't make it a few years ago to the Walkerville Reunion. Walkerville? My high school? I remembered that Guy emailed me from California to tell me about it. And then I remembered that he told me about a 'kid' from his class, Donna somethingorother, who was helping to organize it!

That Donna! Guy's Donna! And she has a kid! And he lives in Nashville ( I forgot to mention that part). And he's being flown in to do the sound for the Leonard Cohen concert in Ramat Gan!

And do I want two tickets? DO I WANT TWO TICKETS?

Let me back up a second. I did not want a ticket to see Madonna...my kid, Joe College went to see her with the cheap ticket of 500 shekels. The Golden Ring tickets went for 2, 500 a seat!!!

I didn't want to see any of those guys. Well, maybe Elton John a few years ago. BUT LEONARD COHEN?

Both my friend Rena and I wanted to go and I did phone the ticket place but was informed that within 24 hours all the tickets were gone.

Friends, we are talking about 50,000 tickets...sold out in 24 hours and now a lady Donna has a son Lee who can get me tickets, if I am interested!!!

I quickly phoned Guy in California and he is still in contact with Donna from ELEMENTARY SCHOOL DAYS...and yes she is real and yes she is an amazing person.

I have not heard her voice in 47 years! Maybe even a year or two longer than that! This is not an old school chum or a family member who I've been in close contact with.

THIS IS A VERY VERY SPECIAL LADY...who, when her son came home to renew his passport and told her where he was going, somehow remembered that she has an old schoolmate who lives in Israel and maybe this woman would be interested in seeing the concert.

I wrote Donna and told her that, whether or not the tickets come through, the gift had already been given. I mean that. I am still breathless from this story.

I phoned Rena and told her to keep Sept. 24th open as we may have tickets to the...You could hear her shout in Tel Aviv!

In the meantime, Donna and I began exchanging emails and bringing each other up-to-date on what has been going on in our lives the past nearly fifty years! She still lives in Windsor, and I am planning to be back this summer. I cannot wait to meet her again in person.

The day before the concert I got an email from Lee that two tickets would be waiting for me and that the concert starts at 7:45 but we should be there a bit early.

Rena and I left at 3 in the afternoon. She has no sense of direction...I have no sense of direction. She called people...I phoned people...and we sort of knew how to get there.

Now you should know it is less than an hour's drive from Jerusalem, but we were going to hit rush hour traffic, get lost, and have to find a place to park along with 49,998 people!

We did get lost. A nice lady said, 'Follow me' and like the Jews wandering around in the desert, her headlights were like a pillar of fire escorting us to the Ramat Gan Stadium.

We got there! Now we had to park. Right next to the stadium is a mall and we started serpentining through the lanes looking for an open space. I didn't know if those parked were already at the stadium or shoppers getting in some last minute shopping before Yom Kippur on Sunday.

Finally we found a space and were about to move in when a lady with a cell phone at her ear informed us that she had this space and was calling her husband to direct him to where she was standing. Then, I noticed a bunch of other women with open cell phones running after people holding keys and walking to their cars. Within moments I saw a family walk to a car in front of us and before I had a chance to say anything to Rena, I jumped out of the car and stood my ground in front of this new space.

Ok. So, now we are in the right place...we have parked the car...we have almost three hours till the concert. The next question was, do we go inside the mall and use the facilities and maybe grab something quick to eat...or do we figure out how to get to the stadium and find our tickets.

Hands down we went to the stadium. I phoned Lee and he sounded like such a nice man. He had little time as they were doing all the last minute things that have to be done before a huge concert like this and the sound is the most important element. He phoned me back a few minutes later and told me where to wait for the tickets.

Just before the performance, the COMPLIMENTARY V.I.P. TICKETS arrived. While we were waiting we saw a sign that was posted informing late comers that there were still a few seats available on the grass from rows 100 till 200 and were going for a thousand shekels a seat!!!

Our tickets came. WE WERE IN ROW 31!!!

We made our way up into the stadium and Lee called to find out if we had the tickets and where we were seated. Ten minutes later there he was!!! What a very handsome, young man with eyes that sparkled and a smile that came from his heart. I couldn't stop hugging him and thanking him. His answer was, 'My pleasure. After all, you're family!'

That was the first time my eyes filled with tears that evening. But, not the last.

I do not know if I have the vocabulary to tell you what happened during the next three and a half hours. Nothing fancy. No fireworks, no people flying through the sky, no tricks.

Just a 75 year old man, wearing a dark suit and a hat. And a voice. And the sound that Lee had perfected which travelled over the 50,000 people in such a way that we could hear every strum of each guitar...every whispered note...as if he was sitting next to us in our living room.

One of the banks, Discount Bank put a zippered bag on each chair. Inside were a pillow and a flare. For the next three and a half hour those flares didn't stop moving. The stadium was alive.

I must stop here for one second, to say that Israeli audiences are wonderful audiences. I've been to many concerts and plays and I've always been amazed at just how receptive, responsive and intelligent the Israeli audience is.

But nothing was like what happened that night. Israel welcomed one if her own back and he thanked us by blessing us...with his voice...his songs...his love...and finally the Priestly Blessing that only a Cohen(priest) can perform.

I will never ever forget that evening. It was perfect. Just simply perfect. And I was lucky enough to be sitting there sharing and participating in one of the most exciting evenings this country has ever witnessed.

All because of a lady who remembered that she once went to school with a girl who now lives in Jerusalem!

The world can't be a bad place if people like Donna and Lee are part of it.

Thank you. Thank you so very very very much.

Have a great day...stay safe...and thanks for dropping in.