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 August 1, 2013/ 25 Menachem-Av, 5773

Dolls can be very scary

By Barry Koltnow

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | (MCT) After my mock interview with the "real" Lone Ranger and Tonto, I heard from a new reader who identified himself as a writer who fashioned himself an expert on the Masked Man.

He took me to task for trying to pull a fast one on my readers by claiming to interview people who were more dead than alive. He said he read the introduction to my interview more than once, thinking that perhaps he missed the clues that would point to a spoof or a tongue-in-cheek article, rather than a fact-based interview.

I responded that I did not think that I had to spell it out when I was offering an interview with two fictional characters who lived only on the printed page, television and in the movies. I never said I was interviewing two actors who played the characters. I was interviewing two people who were not real, so I had to admit that I assumed that readers would realize that it was indeed tongue-in-cheek.

To clear the air before we start today's column — particularly for that Lone Ranger expert, and others who might not be accustomed to my sense of humor — I want to emphasize that the following anecdote is true. It is not tongue-in-cheek, and you can tell that it's not tongue-in-cheek because it doesn't make me look very good. In fact, my distorted self-image of being a tough, virile stud may be irreparably damaged by telling this story.

Once in a while, a movie studio will send packages to my home. The packages usually contain press notes from a movie that I'm about to write about or a trailer of the movie in question or inexpensive promotional trinkets. My wife picked up a package that was delivered recently, and asked if I would mind if she opened it. I nodded and she hastily unwrapped the package. Her eyes lit up. "Oh, look, it's a little doll," she said.

She held up the doll, and I ran out of the room in a panic.

"What's wrong?" she called out to her squeamish husband.

"That's Annabelle," I shouted from behind the safety of a locked door.

"It's just a doll, you chicken," my sensitive and understanding wife replied.

"That's what you think." I said.

After her laughter subsided, I explained that the Annabelle doll plays a significant role in "The Conjuring," a new film that I consider one of the scariest movies ever made in Hollywood. It is a story taken from the archives of famed paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren. Consider this: "The Amityville Horror" was based on one of their cases, and the Warrens insisted that the case that inspired "The Conjuring" was much worse.

Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga play the Warrens, who are approached during the 1970s to expel from a Rhode Island farmhouse the dark spirits that go bump in the night. These are really bad demons, as if there are good demons. They're so bad that even the demon union is afraid of them

Anyway, the movie starts off with the resolution of another case handled by the Warrens, and that's when we meet the Annabelle doll. This movie is not even about the doll, and she still scared me.

I don't know what it is about horror films with evil dolls, but they have creeped me out as long as I can remember. Vampires don't bother me, zombies don't bother me and chainsaw-wielding maniacs don't bother me. But put a creepy doll in a movie and I'm outta here.

For those of us who love movies but suffer from a creepy doll phobia, the genesis of all creepy dolls was a 1962 episode of the classic TV series "Twilight Zone." It was called "The Dummy," and starred Cliff Robertson as a ventriloquist who worked with a doll named Willie. This not only started my fear of movie dolls, but it didn't help the public view of ventriloquists, either.

People love ventriloquist acts, but they harbor deep-seated suspicions about entertainers who juggle multiple personalities for a living.

In 1978, the second shoe dropped on the neck of ventriloquism with the film "Magic." Directed by Richard Attenborough, it starred Anthony Hopkins and his dummy Fats.

I never looked at ventriloquists the same way after that film. I enjoy a good ventriloquist but I wouldn't turn my back on any dummy.

Finally, there is the 1988 horror film "Child's Play," which gave the world Chucky, a young boy's doll possessed by a killer. For many people, the word "creepy" begins and ends with Chucky. The murderous little doll spawned four sequels, and started a cottage industry of psychotic killer dolls on the big screen.

I am a grown man so I am not afraid of Chucky. Chucky is not the boss of me. I wish I could say the same of Annabelle.


Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment on Barry Koltnow's column by clicking here.


The biggest movie surprises of the summer
The Lone Ranger and Tonto vent
Imitation is the sincerest form of filmmaking
Zombie movies you should see before you re-animate
Real Google doesn’t mean real giggles
This summer features a lot of movies with surprise plot twists
Don't let this golden opportunity slip away
Blame the shark for summer-movie madness
Baby boomers still buy tickets
Biopics always have one scene too many
Sneaking into movies not as easy as in old days
Ben Affleck's life is still worth living
The black market for movie raves
The 10 worst movies of 2012
2012's most annoying celebrities
Lindsay Lohan needs to be ignored
Red Dawn' remake reflects China's box-office pull
Fall movie season ends with lessons learned
The 10 best Bond villains ever
Readers weigh in on confusing movies
10 most confusing movies of all time
Do you enjoy going out to the movies?
Sylvester Stallone, the Dalai Lama and me
Watch August movies at your own risk
Nothing new in the new Spider-Man movie
Grading the summer movies . . . so far
Readers are angry about TV network practices, too
TV networks have some explaining to do
The night Johnny Depp made me a star
Summer movies: the dark horses
Lindsay, Ashton, Kim --- are they kidding?
Readers pick their favorite baseball movies
Our 10 favorite baseball movies
The most over-hyped movies of 2012
The 10 worst best pictures ever
The greatest Oscar acceptance speech NEVER given
The worst biopics ... ever
20 celebrity questions that must be answered in 2012
The Golden Globes are meaningless
The 10 Most Annoying Celebrities of 2011
The funniest comedy teams
Fake celebrities ignite real controversy
Hollywood: Stop spoiling our movies
Mob expert reveals his favorite gangster flicks
Good riddance, Harry Potter
The coolest car movies ever made
Our favorite teacher movies
Are women funny?
Our special snarky summer movie guide
The 10 most pressing show biz questions
Readers weigh in on the royal wedding
The royal wedding: I don't get it
Readers reach verdict on lawyer column
Our favorite lawyer movies ever
Readers pick their worst Oscar winners
The 10 worst best pictures ever
25 hit-man movies to die for
The 10 greatest sidekicks ever
The 10 biggest celebrity missteps of 2010
Who's cooler than Steve McQueen? (Answer: nobody)
The best revenge movies ever
The good old days, when celebrities weren't train wrecks
Making sport of celebrities
Youth will be served? Don't give me that trash!
A celebrity answer is no answer at all
Caution: geniuses at work

© 2010, The Orange County Register; Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.