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 Jan. 19, 2007 / 29 Teves 5767

Rain — Where Art Thou?

By Greg Crosby

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | No one has been talking about it yet, but I believe we must be heading into severe drought conditions here in Los Angeles. Right now as I sit and type, this particular day is cold and overcast — there is even some minor drizzle, very minor, but we have had really nothing even close to what could be considered normal rainfall for well over a year.

It is an interesting thing, but every time the weather tellers say it will rain, it never does. "Rain coming for Thursday and Friday," translates to "No rain in the foreseeable future, thank you very much." It's about as sure a thing as you could ever get in this here world — you could bet the baby's college fund on it. If the predictors say "rain" you can confidently run out and have your car washed, leave the raincoat at home, and drive through the canyons without a second thought.

I suppose the old adage that one always desires most the thing most unobtainable (or words to that effect) is true in the case of rain for me. I have always liked the rain and living here in L.A. I never get enough of it — or any of it, it seems lately. Sunshine is tiresome and dull, whereas rain is invigorating and interesting. Someone once said that most places in the world have weather, but Los Angeles has climate. I would add to that, the word, "boring."

There is something refreshing and cleansing about rain, a washing away of the previous days' dirt. And there is something particularly warm and comforting about a nice steady rainfall in the middle of the day when one is inside all safe and sound. I don't mean a violent storm which pounds the windows and floods the streets, (although I could make a case for even that, too) but a nice steady, normal, medium rainfall which encourages one to make a fire in the fireplace, curl up with a book, and put up a nice cup of tea (or a good stiff drink, if you prefer).

Which brings me to an observation made recently by my wife that whenever it does rain slightly, it seems to choose the dead of night to do so, thus gypping those of us who enjoy the rain out of any pleasure we might get out of it. What good is it to have a bit of rain if you've slept through the entire thing? It would be like looking forward to seeing the hottest $200 a seat musical show and falling asleep before it even begins. No fair.

Having it rain during the day, if you don't absolutely have to be somewhere, is nature's way of telling you to stay home and take it easy today. Don't go out, slow down and take a deep breath. Without sounding too ethereal or New Age-y, rain can create the proper atmosphere for thought and meditation. It also supplies the right backdrop for old-fashioned conversation. And a rainy day is perfect for a game of cards, Scrabble, Parcheesi, or Monopoly.

When I was in elementary school, the teacher would drag out the old box of comic books to hand out to us on rainy days when we couldn't go out for recess or lunch — it was a special treat for me. Nothing went better with my tuna sandwich then reading a Little Lulu or Dagwood comic at my desk on a rainy day. Now that I think of it, it seems that we had a lot more rainy days back then. I remember walking to school often in my yellow rain slicker and galoshes, stomping in puddles and jumping across flooded street corners. I can still remember those metal latch-snaps on my coat and boots. And I remember sitting at the window at home just watching the rain.

It's been a long time since I just sat at a window and watched it rain. I miss it. Looking out my window now, it appears that the sun is starting to break through the dark clouds and once again, L.A. will be rain-free. Too bad. We could use the rain, and not only for the usual sensible reasons like for the agriculture, or for the water reserves, but for the washing of the soul that a fresh, sweet rain brings with it.

I guess I'll just have to be content with the cold, crisp air, of which I am grateful, and the overcast sky, which is all too rare in the City of Angeles. At least it isn't another hot, sunny day, and that in itself is something. But the weather mavens got it wrong again and they will continue to get it wrong, it seems, no matter how high tech they get. When you say it will rain in Los Angeles, you might as well predict when hell will freeze over. They promised me rain again. No rain today.

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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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