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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

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 Nov. 29, 2013/ 26 Kislev, 5774

Jolly on Hold

By Greg Crosby



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | As much as I hate to go negative at the holiday season, please bear with me while I put my jolly on hold for this week and do a bit of philosophizing. This won't take long, I promise you, and then you can get back to holiday cheer, peace on earth, goodwill toward men, and all that other holly jolly jazz.

Lately I've attended two funerals, which are two more than I would have liked to attend. The last one was just this past week when a long-time friend of my wife's suddenly died while standing at the sink washing dishes in her home. She went fast. She wasn't sick, she didn't have a disease; she just fell over dead. She did have a minor issue with her heart earlier in the year, but she was on medication and everyone thought it had been taken care of. Clearly it wasn't.

The temptation is to say, "Well, thank goodness she didn't suffer a lingering illness," which is true. Unlike what so many other people have to go through, she was spared the agony of a prolonged hospital stay complete with modern medicine's torturous testing, probing, and procedures. Yes, she escaped that and she never knew what hit her. That's the good news.

The bad news is . . . she never knew what hit her. She woke up that morning just as she had all her life, everything was fine, she started her day just as she had for years. It was another nice November morning and thenů.providence cold-cocked her. She never saw it coming. Wham! Here today, gone in an instant. Finished.

It's no good either way. To die in pain over an extended period of time is horrible. To slowly wither away from disease is horrible. But isn't it also rather sad when you die out of a clear blue sky, feeling relatively fine and believing that you have more time left on your parking meter? When you die after having a fatal illness people say "At least he's not suffering any more." But if you die for what seems like no reason at all, then it's kind of like a cruel joke.



For more than 22 years my wife met her friend every Wednesday for lunch or sometimes for breakfast. They'd get together to do a little shopping, a lot of chatting, and occasionally a bit of commiserating. They weren't alike in many ways, but they were very good friends. They both loved reading, plants, and music. They swapped books, they swapped life experiences, and they k'vetshed about the world. They laughed, and they cried. Every week for 22 years.

As usual, my wife saw her friend this past Wednesday and went to breakfast at one of their favorite spots. They loved this place, known for their terrific waffles served with hot syrup and melted butter along with eggs, but they didn't go there as often as they would have liked - much too fattening. "What the heck. Life is too short. Let's just go and do it this week." So they went and ate a wonderful breakfast. Friday morning my wife's friend was gone.

After living for almost 65 years, I've come to the conclusion that being alive is better than being dead. Now, granted, I could be wrong about this, I have been wrong about a whole lot of stuff in the past, so this could be just another case of my not knowing what the heck I'm talking about. I may find out for sure someday one way or the other, but right now, I'll take life.

Life has it over death in so many ways. Take the senses for example. No smelling fresh baked bread when you're dead. No seeing sunsets when you're dead. No hearing beautiful music. No tasting ice cream. No touching the soft skin of a baby. No nothing. Now maybe we get other senses given to us in the next world, senses that are even better than our human ones. Maybe. But until that time, shouldn't we enjoy the humble five we have now?

"Living life to the fullest" is one of those trite expressions that can really mean anything or nothing. In fact, we need to appreciate life first before we can actually enjoy it. Sure, try to eat right, don't abuse your body, guard yourself against disease, drive carefully, wear a coat when it's cold, use sun screen, stay in bed when your sick and drink lots of liquids. Be smart about your health.

But in doing all of the above, don't forget to LIVE, too. It's okay to have a drink now and then if you want it. Stay up late and party now and then. It's fine to be decadent every once in awhile. Don't wait to go somewhere you've always wanted to go to, just go. Do it while you can still do it. Buy that crazy outfit. Go out for dinner more. Smoke a cigar. And eat that waffle with hot syrup and melted butter. You're alive, act like it.

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JWR contributor Greg Crosby, former creative head for Walt Disney publications, has written thousands of comics, hundreds of children's books, dozens of essays, and a letter to his congressman. A freelance writer in Southern California, you may contact him by clicking here.

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© 2008, Greg Crosby

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