web analytics
June 25, 2016 / 19 Sivan, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘building’

Lower East Side in the Eye of the Storm?

Monday, October 29th, 2012

It’s Sunday night, only hours until the super-mega-Frankenstorm Hurricane Sandy descends upon the Lower East Side, reports the Lower East Side’s LowDown website, adding: “It’s a little windy and might rain, but it may be the last time you go out for a while, so by all means — go out!”

Hurricane Sandy wind modeling from the National Weather Service.

Hurricane Sandy wind modeling from the National Weather Service.

This is crazy. For 37 years we lived on the Lower East Side and whenever a hurricane was approaching, it was always somewhere else, hundreds and thousands of miles away. Now it appears that Hurricane Sandy (did they have to pick a Jewish sounding name?) is expected to make landfall smack at the Lower East Side.

Angry Storm Clouds over the LES – photo by Vivienne Gucwa at http://nythroughthelens.com.

Angry Storm Clouds over the LES – photo by Vivienne Gucwa at http://nythroughthelens.com.

I received an email from my State Senator, Daniel Squadron, reporting that as of 7 PM, the MTA subway service stopped running. Elevators, heat and hot water were shut off in NYCHA buildings in Zone A (along the riverfront) at 7 PM. It’s possible elevators will also be shut off in other large buildings in Zone A.

At 9 PM, buses stopped running from Zone A NYCHA developments to evacuation shelters. MTA bus service also stopped running altogether at 9 PM.

The local website, The LowDown, published an image taken at the Fine Fare supermarket on Grand Street, which was packed with shoppers “stocking up before the big storm.” According to the LowDown, “the shelves are still mostly full but water and bread supplies seem to be running a little low.”

I took a look at the mandatory evacuation map and noted that the co-ops on Grand Street near the FDR Drive are not within the red zone. They should be strong enough to withstand a hurricane, with God’s help.

So now we’re sitting and waiting, here, in Netanya, Israel, for news from the old country. Our thoughts are with our family and friends on the LES – stay indoors and obey the Mayor, I suppose.

Monday morning shacharis services should be still held in the various shuls, according to an email I received from the Bialystoker Synagogue, but the weather later on Monday may prohibit people from leaving their homes safely for mincha and maariv. They will play it by ear. There are contact people in each co-op building who will know what’s the score.

The email reminded the locals that Rabbi Dovid Feinstein, the halachic authority of the neighborhood, made a shacharis minyan in his home in 2011, when Tropical Storm Irene was expected to hit the area.

The Bialystoker email thanked all the people for opening their homes for any minyanim that may be needed, and asked residents spread the word, help with chairs, siddurim, figuring out if a minyan is needed and if, should it be necessary, they may safely join a minyan in an adjacent building. Anyone who may not go to his regular minyan is asked to join a building minyan to assist those who need to say kaddish.

According to the LowDown, all day long, officials have been urging residents in New York’s Zone A to evacuate by 7 o’clock this evening. But they have been paying particular attention to the Smith Houses on James Street, near the Brooklyn Bridge. City Council member Margaret Chin and State Senator Daniel Squadron were among those on the scene at this NYCHA building, urging people to heed the evacuation order.

Yori Yanover

Lucky Avraham Didn’t Have the Internet

Sunday, October 28th, 2012

Good thing there wasn’t Internet and Facebook in the days of our forefather Avraham. If there had been, he may never have come to Israel. He may have decided to stay in Ur Kasdeem, and settle with being a vicarious Israeli via the Internet. That way he could have enjoyed the best of both worlds, rubbing shoulders with all of the wealthy and high-ranking idol worshippers in Ur Kasdeem, while at the same time sending in comments to The Jewish Press.com, critical of the way things were being run in the Holy Land.

After all, in Avraham’s time, there were savage Canaanites living in Eretz Yisrael. And there weren’t any kosher supermarkets back then, nor religious neighborhoods, nor Jewish Day Schools and yeshivot for the kids. In fact, there weren’t any Jews living there at all. Avraham would be the first. Who needed the hassle? It made a lot more sense to stay where he was, in Ur America, where everyone knew him, enjoying the good life with the goyim, wait for Moshiach, and pretend, via the Internet, that he was actually involved in building the Jewish State.

Lucky for us that The Jewish Press.com didn’t exist back then. It could have been a test that even Avraham might not have had the strength to overcome.

Tzvi Fishman

Brooklyn Suffers Surge in Anti-Semitic Scrawling

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

A swastika was found painted in the elevator of a building in South Williamsburg, Brooklyn on Tuesday.

The hate symbol appeared on a building on Clymer street near Wythe avenue.  Some reports stated that the scrawling is the fourth such incident in the last few months.

Earlier this month, during the Jewish holidays, a Brooklyn subway station was marred with graffiti in red capital letters stating “THE WORLD WOULD BE MUCH BETTER OFF IF ALL THE JEWS WERE LAMPSHADES” and “HitlER (sic) WAS RIGHT RE THE JEWS”.

Malkah Fleisher

Investing In Your Relationship

Wednesday, October 24th, 2012

I often share with my clients a simple yet powerful analogy: think about your relationship as you do about your bank account. That’s because investing in your relationship is similar to saving money; the more you put into your bank account or relationship, the more you can take out when necessary.

The way to develop your emotional wealth is to invest as much equity as possible, so when the going gets tough, you can dig into your savings and avoid going into the red.

Investing in your relationship takes time and effort and is a challenge for all couples. In my own life, for example, I believe my relationship is so important that my wife and I try to schedule time alone together at least once a week to focus on our relationship. Despite the pressures of our busy lives, we try to creatively make sure we are investing in our marriage. Sometimes we go out to a restaurant to eat or just take a walk down the block together. Other times, we go grocery shopping or head to the local convenience store in order to enjoy a few minutes alone just schmoozing about our day. When life goes into overdrive and time is limited, we take a “time out” for ourselves, and spend a few minutes in a quiet and secluded room in the home just talking to one another.

It really doesn’t matter what you do or what you talk about during your private times together. What matters most is to give your spouse the feeling that he or she is the most important person in the world.

Of course, the way to build emotional equity in a marriage is to make as many deposits as possible. In general, positive statements like complimenting one another, sharing appreciations and speaking kind words are “deposits.” Every time you tell your spouse that you appreciate them, or their actions, you are building more emotional wealth. You can even think of a compliment as a dollar. Imagine how rich you could become if you increase the amount of times per hour you compliment your spouse!

And it’s not just complimenting that works; actions speak louder than words. Helping each other with daily tasks such as shopping for food or just cleaning the house are ways in which couples can increase their emotional equity. The point is that it doesn’t take a large budget, or a lot of time, to build a relationship. Even the simplest gestures can make a difference.

The opposite is also true. Couples will deplete their emotional savings by criticizing and exercising external control. Trying to force one another via manipulation or by insulting each other decreases emotional wealth, and can even put some relationships into bankruptcy.

At the end of each month, I suggest that couples take a look and see how their emotional savings account is developing. They should check how many deposits they’ve made and how much was withdrawn. The goal is to become aware of the overall growth of the relationship and to see if it is getting stronger, or needs more nurturing.

The Miraculous Bamboo Tree

One way to illustrate the need to invest in the long-term sustainability of your marriage is to look at the miraculous growth pattern of the Chinese bamboo tree.

It seems that this tree when planted, watered, and nurtured for an entire growing season doesn’t outwardly grow as much as an inch. Then, after the second growing season, a season in which the farmer takes extra care to water, fertilize and care for the bamboo tree, the tree still hasn’t sprouted. So it goes as the sun rises and sets for four solid years. The farmer and his wife have nothing tangible to show for all of their labor.

Then, along comes year five.

In the fifth year that Chinese bamboo tree seed finally sprouts and the bamboo tree grows up to eighty feet in just one growing season! Or so it seems….

Did the little tree lie dormant for four years only to grow exponentially in the fifth? Or, was the little tree growing underground, developing a root system strong enough to support its potential for outward growth in the fifth year and beyond? The answer, of course, is obvious. Had the tree not developed a strong unseen foundation it could not have sustained its life as it grew. The same principle is true for people.

Rabbi Daniel Schonbuch

Contemplating the Divine Together

Wednesday, October 24th, 2012

We live on the first floor of a Netanya apartment building, which means that our living room panorama window overlooking the street below is about 15 feet high.

Our girl cat, Lightening, sits in the window much of the day, basking in our Mediterranean sun. She wasn’t for the move to Israel initially, but by now she’s very happy, grooms regularly and even put on some weight.

When I come home from shul Shabbat morning, around 10:30-11:00, I walk up the paved path from the street and whistle at Lightening and she recognizes me. She stiffens up, shocked at the notion that someone who is usually inside the house is now, by some unexplained miracle of science, on the other side of things.

Then she calls back, arches her back and rushes to the door to greet me. When I open the door, she’s there, demanding a thorough back scratch (and tummy).

She’s a lot like a dog that way.

But while dogs worship their masters, I believe Lightening sees me as an equal, who is sometimes frustrating when he doesn’t get what she’s asking for.

And I believe that this picture, of a cat davening alongside his co-equal, proves my point.

Yori Yanover

New Yorkers Get Together to Save a Distinctly Jewish Architectural Gem

Monday, October 22nd, 2012

The Bialystoker Nursing Home, with its distinctive orange brick and Art Deco façade, has been shut down for a year after its nonprofit operators has been unable to keep the institution in business.

Now city preservationists want to declare the building a landmark before somebody turns it into condominiums.

Indeed, the board of what used to be the nursing home wants to sell the home and adjacent properties “as quickly as possible,” as a spokeswoman told the NY Post, adding there was “significant interest” in the site.

The closed home is encumbered with serious financial debt, including $3 million which is owed to its unionized workers.

Councilwoman Margaret Chin, who represents the area, came out in support of landmarking in July. But so far Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, the most powerful man in the state and, of course, the Lower East Side, his home district, has not exactly endorsed the idea, although he did state that if the city’s Landmarks Preservation Commission decides to declare the building a landmark, he would support their decision.

“This was an important place,” Sam Solasz, 85, chairman of the nursing home’s board for 24 years, told the Post. “I will fight no matter how much it costs.”

I turned to my good friend, City historian Joyce Mendelsohn, who is among the founders of Friends of the Bialystoker Home (FBH) for a little more information about the Bialystoker Home and Center, at 228 East Broadway (designed by architect Harry Hurwit in 1931). She sent me the following email:

Friends of the Bialystoker Home (FBH) is a grass roots group formed in September, 2011, out of concern for the future of the building, after it was announced that the home would be closed and patients relocated to other facilities outside the Lower East Side.

FBH organized a campaign to save the building through landmark designation after the Home was listed by Grubb and Ellis, a real estate firm, as a tear-down, or, as they put it: “a highly desirable development site.”

A landmark designation would protect the building from demolition and would require approval from the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission of all proposals by the new owner for additions or alteration to the building.

The sale of the building is imminent to a developer who would demolish this precious remnant of the Jewish legacy on the Lower East Side and replace it with luxury condos.

Neighborhood residents, concerned individuals, local groups and citywide organizations rallied to save this rare surviving building that reflects the history and culture of caring for generations of Jewish immigrants and their descendants on the Lower East Side. Sixteen Sponsoring Organizations signed on in support of landmark designation. They include the Lower East Side Tenement Museum, the Museum at Eldridge Street, Congregation Kehila Kedosha Janina, the Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy, Historic Districts Council, NYC Landmarks Conservancy, Art Deco Society of New York and the Gotham Center for NYC History, CUNY/Graduate Center.

The founders of the Home were immigrant Jews from Bialystok, Poland, who established a federation of landsmanshaftn and erected the Bialystoker Home for the Aged for their headquarters and as a sizable facility to care for the elderly and infirm. In announcing plans for this endeavor, they declared, “Our Home will combine modernity with compassion – a Home with a Heart that will stand as a monument for succeeding generations.”

Harry Hurwit – who grew up on the LES and was the architect of several smaller buildings in the neighborhood – designed the striking ten-story structure with ornament expressing its Jewish heritage. The distinctive entrance arch displays two menorahs and twelve stone medallions each representing the Twelve Tribes of Israel, surmounted by the name, “BIALYSTOKER” in Hebraic-style lettering. The building exhibits a unique combination of Jewish symbolism and deco design that signifies a community firmly rooted in traditions of their homeland and, at the same time, proclaiming their rightful place in America.

For further information and photos, go to: friendsofthelowereastside.org

Yori Yanover

Three Rockets Hit Sderot. IAF Strikes Back (updated)

Wednesday, October 17th, 2012

At 1:04 AM Wednesday morning, the red alert siren went off in multiple towns and cities in the south.

Three rockets were launched at Sederot. One rocket landed near a building, but there were no injuries. The rest landed in open areas.

The IAF responded a few minutes after, hitting a target in Gaza.

Update/Correction: Following reports from Palestinian sources that Hamas affiliated Ahmed Jabari was killed in the IAF strike, Palestinian radio announced that Jabari was not killed in the attack.

 

Jewish Press News Briefs

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/three-rockets-hit-sderot/2012/10/17/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: