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September 22, 2014 / 27 Elul, 5774
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘gold’

Aly Raisman Wins Gold and Bronze

Wednesday, August 8th, 2012

The Israeli Olympic team will go home without any medals for the first time since the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, Korea, but Jewish-American gymnast Aly Raisman has done us proud, winning a gold medal in the floor exercise as well as a bronze on the balance beam at the London Olympics.

Raisman, 18, of Needham, Mass., took the gold Tuesday with a score of 15.6 to edge Catalina Ponor of Romania and Aliya Mustafina of Russia, the silver and bronze medalists.

Earlier in the day, Raisman won the bronze on the balance beam after the U.S. lodged a protest against the original result. She had finished fourth behind Ponor. Following the Americans’ protest, the rescoring put the two gymnasts in a tie. Under the tie-breaking procedure, Raisman took the bronze with a higher execution score. She had lost a bronze in the all-around on the same tie-breaker.

China took the gold and silver in the event. American Gabby Douglas, who won the all-around, also fell off the apparatus and finished seventh among the eight competitors.

Raisman had helped Team USA take the women’s team gold — the first Olympic gold medal for the U.S. gymnastics squad since the 1996 Games in Atlanta. Raisman won the floor exercise in the team competition while performing her routine to a string-heavy version of “Hava Nagila.”

Also Tuesday, Israeli windsurfer Lee Korzits had problems in the final and finished in sixth place after entering the medal race in second. She was ninth in the medal round.

Korzits, 28, won world windsurfing titles in 2011 and 2012. She did not qualify to represent Israel at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and considered retiring.

The following year she suffered a near-fatal surfing accident while working on the Professional Windsurfers Association’s tour in Hawaii. She was told by doctors that she would never surf again but she rededicated herself to the sport.

Aly Raisman Leads US to Gymnastics Team Gold

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

Aly Raisman, a Jewish American, won the floor exercise in helping the U.S. women’s team to the gold medal in the gymnastics competition at the London Olympics.

Earlier this week, Raisman’s parents became part of You Tube lore with their clip of performance anxiety (Aly’s performance, that is).

The Americans on Tuesday won their first team gold medal in women’s gymnastics since the Atlanta Games in 1996, finishing with 183.596 points to defeat Russia (178.530) and Romania (176.414).

Raisman, 18, of Needham, Mass., scored 15.300 in the floor exercise to win the event, performing her routine to a string-heavy version of “Hava Nagila” as she did on Sunday. Raisman also had performed to “Hava Nagila” when she gained a berth on the U.S. team last year.

Raisman is favored to win the all-around individual competition on Thursday, as well as the floor exercise on Aug. 7, when she also will be competing in the balance beam final. She and Gabby Douglas are representing the U.S. in the individual finals.

Raisman is a recipient of the Pearl D. Mazor Outstanding Female Jewish High School Scholar-Athlete of the Year Award given out by the Jewish Sports Hall of Fame in New York.

Should You Sell Your Inheritance?

Friday, July 27th, 2012

 Just because someone else owned them, it doesn’t mean they’re good investments.

What did you do when you received a purple vase decorated with green stripes and gold roses as an inheritance from your late Aunt Minnie? Did you give it a place of honor in your breakfront, hide it away in the attic, or did you follow your spouse’s instructions and “sell that hideous thing because at least you might get some money for it”? Chances are that you wouldn’t dare sell the vase, simply because of its sentimental value.

When it comes to a financial inheritance, such as stocks or bonds, you would be surprised how many people keep holding onto these positions for sentimental reasons.

If you do inherit some money in the form of stocks or bonds, you have two possible options:

1. You could sell the positions and start from scratch.

2. You could keep them and try to maintain the portfolio.

Under the right conditions, either decision could work for you.

For example, if the original owner didn’t have a solid reason for holding them, but did so anyway because at the end of his life he really wasn’t thinking so clearly about money anymore, why do you need to keep them? If these investments aren’t doing so well, do you really need them?  Even if these investments were suitable and worked well for the person who left them to you, consider if they are appropriate for you and fit in with your overall financial plan. You may well be better off selling them and investing the money into something else that would be a lot more suitable for your personal situation and aspirations. And last, but by no means least, an investment is not an old vase. Whereas the worst thing that could happen to you by holding onto Aunt Minnie’s vase is that you have another dust collector in your living room, holding onto an investment for sentimental reasons can have a negative impact on your portfolio.

On the other hand, this doesn’t mean that you should automatically sell the investment just because you have inherited it. Take a look at it (preferably with the help of your financial adviser) and ask yourself whether you would have invested in this particular position if you didn’t inherit it. If the answer is positive, then keep it.

Sometimes, a person receives an inheritance and doesn’t know what to do, simply because they have never invested before.  The world of stocks, bonds, and mutual funds may not be familiar territory for everyone. If this is the case for you, consider taking the free course on “3 Tips to Dealing with Inheritances.”  If you anticipate receiving, or giving, an inheritance one day, this is knowledge you must have.

Zionist Olympic Gold Moment

Friday, July 27th, 2012

Windsurfer Gal Fridman from kibbutz Sdot Yam has won a bronze medal in the Atlanta 1996 Summer Olympics, and a gold medal in the Athens 2004 Summer Olympics.

In 2007 he won the Men’s Windsurfer New Year International Regatta in Limassol, Cyprus.

He is the only Israeli athlete to have won two Olympic medals, and the first (and only, to date) Olympic gold medallist in Israeli history.

His first name, Gal, means “wave” in Hebrew.

And he really spells his last name “Fridman.”

In 2008, Fridman switched to coaching, and guided Nimrod Mashiach to the silver medal in the 2009 World Championship.

Nimrod means “We shall rebel” in Hebrew. Mashiach means “Anointed.”

In 2005 he married Michal Peleg, his girlfriend of ten years.

Her maiden name, Peleg, means “little stream” in Hebrew.

In 2005, Fridman’s medals were stolen from his parents’ home in a robbery, but the gold medal was not taken.

In July, 2009, his wife gave birth to baby girl Ella.

Her name means both a kind of tree (Pistacia palaestina) and “Goddess.”

Sdot Yam means “Sea Fields” in Hebrew. The kibbutz was established as a fishing village just north of Hadera.

Back in 1936, it was only officially a fishing village, but in reality served as a base for the Palyam, the naval branch of the Haganah underground, for smuggling in then-illegal immigrants. Yossi Harel, famous for commanding the Exodus and three other illegal ships, is buried at Sdot Yam.

Harel means “God’s Mountain” in Hebrew.

Exodus is what we’ve been doing here for 150 years now.

Agnes Keleti: The Foundation Stone Of Gymnastics In Israel

Sunday, July 22nd, 2012

“I felt here that I was at home,” remarks Agnes Keleti about her arrival in Israel in 1957. An Israeli emissary had invited this leading Hungarian Jewish female athlete to participate in the fifth Maccabiah Games that year, and that’s when she discovered that Israel was “home.” Soon after arriving she decided to settle in the Jewish state and become an integral part of its life. Riding the high wave of athletic success – Agnes Keleti, the most successful Jewish female athlete in Olympic history with ten Olympic medals – decided to put aside fame and fortune and contribute her talent to her people.

She became a coach of the Israeli national gymnastics team and a physical education teacher at Tel Aviv University and at the Wingate Institute for Physical Education and Sport, imparting her enormous knowledge and experience to admiring young gymnasts. She also purchased sporting and gymnastic equipment that had never been used before in Israel.

Born on January 9, 1921 in Budapest, Hungary, Aggie Klein began her gymnastics training when she was four at Budapest’s Jewish club and by the age of sixteen had won the first of her ten national titles. With the German invasion of Hungary in 1944 the talented teen’s training came to an abrupt halt. To survive World War II she bought the papers of a Christian girl and worked as a maid for a pro-Nazi family in a small Hungarian village.

During the battle for Budapest in the winter of 1944–1945, she did morning rounds to collect the bodies of those who had died the previous day and place them in a mass grave. Her mother and sister went into hiding and were saved by the Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg. Her father, however, was sent to Auschwitz where, together with the rest of the Klein/Keleti family he was killed.

At the end of the war Agnes Keleti returned to her gymnastics career. Between 1947 and 1955 she was the dominant force on the national scene and was equally impressive in international competitions where she represented Hungary twenty-four times between 1947 and 1956.

At the World University Games of 1949 Agnes Keleti won a silver, a bronze and four gold medals! Three years later, at the 1952 Helsinki Olympic Games thirty-one year old Agnes won four medals — a gold, a silver and two bronze medals.

If her performance was remarkable in 1952, it was overshadowed by an even more formidable display of talent, determination and ability in the 1954 World Championship. She finished first on the uneven bars and the hand apparatus team, second in the combined team and third on the balance beam. This performance was still not the high point of her career, which came at the Melbourne Olympics in 1956: the thirty-five-year-old Agnes Keleti scored an astounding triumph, winning four gold and two silver medals.

The following year, Agnes came to Israel and a new chapter began in her life. Here she met and married Robert Biro, a fellow Hungarian physical education teacher, and, although by now in her forties, became a happy mother of two sons: Daniel, born in 1963, a university lecturer in finance, and Rafael, born a year later, a fashion designer. Mrs. Keleti Biro’s family joy was shared by her mother and sister who have also settled in Israel.

Recently, Agnes Keleti, dubbed “the most successful female athlete,”
celebrated her 91st birthday at her home in Herzliah where a former student described her as “the foundation stone of gymnastics in Israel.”

$100,000 in Gold Found in Israel Crusader Fortress

Sunday, July 8th, 2012

One of the largest-ever gold caches located in Israel was discovered by Tel Aviv University and the Nature and Parks Authority in a dig in the Apollonia National Park near Herzliya.

400 grams of gold – 108 gold coins minted around the year 1,000 in Egypt and valued at over $100,000 – was found last week in  by a TAU student in a potsherd under the tiles of one room of a Crusader fortress conquered by the Mamluks.

The find is part of a three-year excavation in which hundreds of arrow heads and catapult stones have been found, evidence of the mighty battle between the Crusaders and the Mamluks.

Rare glass utensils and Italian shards have also been found.

The coastal fortress and adjacent city were part of the Knights Hospitaller’s most important strongholds.  In 1265, Mamluk Sultan Baybars attacked the city and captured it in a 40 day siege.

Researchers believe the gold was hidden by a Crusader leader, in hopes that the fortress would be ultimately be retaken from the Muslim invaders and the treasure restored to its Christian owners.

So Different Yet Similar

Wednesday, June 27th, 2012

Music played loudly while the men danced. On the women’s side of the mechitzah, we tried to speak over the sounds. I leaned over the table to hear what my co-worker’s wife was saying.

“Well, because we are both Belz, it just made sense,” Zeldy said with a smile, then continued picking at the chicken on her plate.

“The Belzer Rebbe even had a hand in our shidduch; he told both of our parents that it was a good idea.”

“By the time a young couple meets,” another woman, Toby, piped in, “the families know so much about each other. All that remains is for the couple to meet. They sometimes even get engaged that night. I remember when my brother was about to meet a girl for the first time, I caught my mother buying candy for a party, and I said, ‘Ma! You’ve already decided they’re getting engaged?’ But they actually did. They got engaged that night!” Toby said with a laugh.

Wow, I thought to myself. We come from such different worlds.

When I arrived home that night after the bar mitzvah of my boss’s son, I thought to myself how interesting it had been to interact with other Jews – but how strange it was not knowing much at all about their lifestyle.

Growing up as a second-generation Lubavitcher in Houston, the only chassidim to whom I had been exposed were the Chabad rabbis in my community. (And I never met the Lubavitcher Rebbe, who lived in New York from 1941 until his passing in 1994.)

My hometown community is an eclectic mix of observant Jews from various backgrounds, and as a child I was exposed to secular ideas and curriculums. Then, while attending a Lubavitch seminary in Israel, I observed other chassidim from afar.

I soon moved to Crown Heights to live near friends while attending university, and picked up the concentrated Lubavitch culture fairly quickly.

It was only four years later, when working alongside Belz, Satmar, and Bobov chassidim for a magazine based in Boro Park, that I developed an intense curiosity about the customs and lifestyle of these chassidim that seemed so different from my own.

Everything from their pronunciation of the holidays to the different ways they each curled their peyos to the mayonnaise-packed dishes for sale every few shops made me dizzy.

The chassidim around me at work periodically gave me a glimpse into their culture, but all I could see was how vastly theirs differed from mine. Still, I continued to observe them from a distance, figuring they valued their privacy.

Earlier that week I had attended a Satmar wedding. Everything seemed so new and exciting to me, but there was something that bothered me. These are my fellow Jews, I thought. Why do their ways seem so foreign to me?

Separate seating I was used to. The chuppah was traditionally Jewish. The fathers swayed back and forth in deep concentration as the bride approached the groom, stepping to the side as she encircled him seven times. The women looked radiant, angelic.

But some of the customs were, well, different. The mothers walked the bride down to the chuppah with an extra covering on their heads. The bride came down to the wedding reception with a wig on, her hair nowhere to be seen.

I had seen some of the customs before, of course. But there was a certain innocence, a purity I sensed, that made me yearn to know these people better. I looked at the girls around me and I ached inside; I didn’t quite know my own sisters, whom I loved nonetheless.

I decided to spend a Shabbos in Boro Park.

* * * * *

After lighting candles on Friday night, I left the house where I was staying to walk quickly through the raindrops to my co-worker’s house. Every person I passed rushed by me, looking in the other direction.

Soon I realized they were all men, so I should not expect a greeting nor should I offer one – of any kind. Men and women keep to their own gender in this neighborhood, I reminded myself. Greetings cannot be called out like in my hometown. Finally I spotted a woman and called out, “Good Shabbos,” to which she smiled and wished me the same.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/front-page/so-different-yet-similar/2012/06/27/

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