In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review July 15, 2005 / 8 Taamuz, 5765

Reining in the dog days of summer

By Garrison Keillor

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | When it comes to the summer doldrums, a person's brain shrinks to pea-size and one forgets about lofty moral values and takes the short view, and so I turn on the air conditioning and burn up precious non-renewable resources for my own comfort and pleasure even if it does mean that glaciers shrink and the Arctic tern is threatened, I just want cool air to blow on me as I sip a cool drink.

I like licorice herbal tea, iced. It's better than beer because you can drink 10 or 15 glasses and still remember your name and address and you don't emit all that gas.

Perhaps the licorice comes from an endangered plant whose demise will mean curtains for the great auk, but it's too hot to worry about that now. I bought the tea at my local co-op which is run by people who wear clothing made entirely from broccoli and I shop there because everything is organic, which is my version of kosher — it means that someone else has worked out the moral arithmetic so I don't have to worry about it. Which it's too hot to do anyway. I don't think about morality, I read trashy magazines about the excesses of the rich and famous.

How did the graduate of a liberal arts college who attended class in a building with Greek columns and an inscription that said men are ennobled by understanding come to this sorry state, sitting in shorts and T-shirt in a stream of cold air, consuming ice, reading trash, looking forward to his second shower of the day? What happened to the nobility?

We have a new shower gizmo that lets you regulate water temperature precisely, not like the old shower knob, which was a joke knob from a novelty store and produced a shower that went suddenly from warm to arctic waterfall and then to the scalding brimstone of hell. You showered quickly and toweled off with a burlap bag and lashed yourself with birch boughs and were, I suppose, a better person for it. But now you can turn the control to, say, 101.5 degrees, and water of that precise temperature shoots on you, the spray adjusted to Needle Sharp or Scattered Showers or Wistful Mist. I remember a time in my childhood when we bathed in a washtub on the kitchen floor on Saturday nights and in warm weather, during the week, we dipped in the Mississippi River. This does help a person appreciate advancements in plumbing.

How the gizmo works, I don't know. Probably good fairies are involved. But it is gratifying for the older naked gentleman lumbering into the shower, catching a glimpse of rococo belly and haunches in the mirror, thinking of men his age who slipped on bathroom floors and jarred a vertebra and began a long odyssey through orthopedics and chiropractics and faith healing and the administration of sacred hankies, to step into a cascade of 101.5-degree water. It's not what I went to college for but it feels good and it cools you off. I know that a man ennobled by understanding should not think about such trivialities, he should be in search of truth, but I am comforted by the flow of water over me. And that's the truth, Ruth.

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Give me iced tea, air conditioning, three showers a day, and I could spend August in Texas, no problem. Happiness is in the details. People who study the Larger Picture are bound to get depressed. Environmentalists are a gloomy bunch, not so different from the fundamentalists I grew up among. They were never so interested in the beauty of lilies or kindness to strangers as they were fascinated by visions of The Tribulation, Armageddon, the Last Judgment. The world was about to end — they alone were privy to this information — and the imminence of it excited them, as if they were in a darkened theater watching the opening titles of a movie in which all hell breaks loose.

But small-minded people like me, we wake up in the morning and think, "Coffee. Hot toast with butter. The crossword puzzle. Thank you, L-rd." And we feel happy. Comfort has weakened us and we are not the men our ancestors were. They would be out in the field bucking hay bales on a hot day and not feel ill-used, whereas we sit in air-conditioned cubicles and diddle with memos and plan to attend our Victims of Circumcision meeting tonight where we help each other deal with the grief and anger — but it's hot out, too hot to be noble. Time enough for that in September when school starts.

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Garrison Keillorís "A Prairie Home Companion" can be heard Saturday nights on public radio stations across the country. Comment by clicking here.

07/01/05: The Land of the Free and the Home of the Berries

© 2005 by Garrison Keillor. All rights reserved. Distributed by Tribune Media Services, INC.