Memo to Netzarim: If you don't live within a Jewish community, you'll have a hard time gaining access to kosher meat, with the possible exception of poultry. Try ordering online. Best prices I've found are at Kohn's Kosher Market in St. Louis. You'll have to pay for overnight or two-day shipping, which is a bite, but ordering online is more convenient and may be cheaper than driving 100-200 miles to the nearest kosher market. Email me with your comments.
Thai One On: A good substitute for milk in some meat recipes is coconut milk. In fact, this has led us to explore some wonderful Thai recipes. Kosher versions of the canned stuff can be hard to find. No matter, you make your own from, surprise, a coconut. Coconut milk for cooking is not the clear stuff you get when you first open a coconut. Save that for your Mai Tai. It's the cocunut meat, ground up, soaked with boiling water, and run through cheesecloth and/or a sieve. There are more detailed recipes on the web, but the process is reasonably simple. Email me with your comments.
The Responsible Schizophrenic: Yesterday, Texas executed a man convicted of killing a businessman and his secretary in his hometown of Palestine, Texas. The man, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia, once said a plate of beans spoke to him and accused his sisters of spying on him. After the shooting, he went home, took off all his clothes except for his socks and stood in the middle of the street until police came. The execution of a schizophrenic person seems harsh. On the other hand, the legal system has tended to treat schizophrenics as if they have free choice and are capable of making informed decisions about whether to take their meds, where to live, and so forth. This is sometimes to the consternation of families trying to control the often considerable damage done to property and lives by schizophrenics. So, in this case, the legal system is being consistent if not wise. Email your comments to me.
Women who look like lizards: At least it's not just me. In their newspaper column, Style Matters, radio personalities Judie Schwartz and Evelinda Urman hold forth against tattoos on people who should know better. We're not talking about bikers, teenagers, and sailors either. "It's upper middle-class women between 20 and 40 years old--especially those that dread mutating into soccer moms--who fuel most of the growth, according to the tattoo parlors," says Judie. And Evelinda, noting that the phenomenon seems to be about a mid-life crisis, adds, "If you're having a mid-life crisis, go out and buy some jewelry. Or better yet, forget about your privileged life and volunteer your time." Hooray for them. In case you were wondering, the Bible (specifically written Torah) associates various kinds of bodily mutilation with pagan practices, which makes me wonder why the "tat fad" has spread to so many Christians, especially women. Apparently, though, Jewish halakha does not forbid nose rings and pierced ears. But I've got to check on that. In the meantime, see this explanation of Jewish Law from a Conservative Rabbi. Please email me with your comments. And see Schueller House for more info.