Tuesday, February 27, 2007


I'm still alive & kicking but ...panting as I go along. I'm BUSY.

Still posting over here so I haven't been home at "the Drive Thru" too much. Will remedy that tomorrow.

Today was to have been a rest-at-home-catch-up-make-dinner-chill day...HOWEVER...

- My keys went missing
- My son fell and cut his lip
- My son's playdate cried and wanted to go home so we had to backtrack and take him home
- We were locked out of the house (missing keys) for hours
- My sort of hurting ear turned into a full blown, throbbing ear infection
- When we got home at around 7 p.m. (FINALLY) after a long and exhausting day, I was unable to get online to surf or check mails due to technical issues with server

The Upsides:
- To make use of the down time while house keys were in transit, I popped over to visit my veterinarian friend. I've been asking to assist her during pet surgery for some time and it just so happened that a dog needing an operation came in while we were there (!) So I got to assist. Very interesting.
- I'm going to bed early. I'm exhausted
- I was pleased with myself for not freaking over the day's lost, precious time that was to be spent transcribing interviews, sewing my son's Purim costume and writing. Nothing I can do about how it all went down
- I'm off to BED!

Friday, February 23, 2007

Details, Details, Details

Hop on down to your corner newsstand and pick up a copy of the latest Details Magazine...therein you shall find an impressive spread on Tel Aviv and its party-night-life-edgy-trendy-wild-goings-on.

Tel Aviv Parties While Israel Burns - written by David Kaufman and photos by Sasha Bezzubov - paints a live-for-the-moment picture of a crowd ignoring "the sociopolitical reality" while hanging at cafes or grinding to beats at S&M clubs and gay hangouts.

Even at straight clubs, notes a gay army major,
the bathroom floors are covered with condoms by 3 a.m.

my, my, my

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Things You Didn't Know

Noorster tagged me. YEAH! I love being tagged. But then it's only my second time. I guess if I got tagged every day my attitude might alter slightly. Or a lot. In the meantime...

Things you Didn't Know About Me (but did you care? that's what I want to know):

1) My Yiddish name is Sussa Libba (for f**k's sake!)
2) I have three siblings - an older sister who is a teacher a younger brother who writes and engineers music and a younger, younger brother who is a chef
3) My lineage includes Polish, Irish, Scottish & Cherokee
4) I helped form a non-profit in San Francisco that illegally shipped AIDS medications - that would've otherwise been tossed - to Africa
5) While in London in the 90's, I was invited to a private orgy. I attended but DID NOT participate. (i claimed strict voyeurism (!)
6) The two most frightening nights of my life: - When my (then) 4-year-old suffered a fever induced febrile seizure and - The first night of Scud missile hits in Tel Aviv during Gulf War #1
7) When I interned in local news in Cincinnati, Jerry Springer was the station's lead anchor
8) I have never been to Disneyland or Disneyworld
9) My Hebrew name is Sareet
10) I don't believe there will ever be world peace

I tag: Liza & nunbet

And Now for some Intelligent Viewing

Liza over at something something posted this video and after watching it, I had to do the same...It's pretty darned...Well just watch. You'll see what I mean.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

She Hadta Go

Sorry but I had to get rid of 'ol Botox lips Oreet Fuchs. The code in her mini-video went berserko and I couldn't get it to stop playing. But then again, I know NOTHING about html. If, however, you can't live without Ms. Fuchs, then follow this link and gaze to your heart's desire. Poor thing.

Meanwhile, sorry for neglecting the site. Have been busy blogging over at this site and so am semi-consumed w/that at the moment.

Enjoy the images. Funny how in Canada, Europe & a good chunk of North America people're trying to get away from this. In Tel Aviv, a big truck dumped it outside one of the malls so kids who don't take ski vacations or get up north to the Golan can play in it... i love warm weather (gloat gloat)

Tuesday, February 13, 2007


I like my job. I've probably blogged it before but I really do enjoy what I do which is a very lucky thing because were my job filled with tasks I loathe, it would pretty much..um...suck.

One of the reasons I like my job is that I get to learn about all sorts of issues. I also get to meet very very interesting people who have really lived, made history, gone places, influenced the lives of millions...in short, people who have impacted our world in significant ways.

I met one of those people today for a story I'm working on. He was an advisor to the late Prime Minister Rabin, and he effected policy and headed negotiating teams during the Madrid Conference, Oslo II and Camp David.

What was profound about this individual aside from his breadth of knowledge and the wealth of information he offered was his humanness. I would like to believe, based upon my readings, that he is sort of what Yitzhak Rabin must have been like when he was alive. Curious, compassionate, kind and yet decisive, bold and certainly not one to mix words.

Concerning the here and now versus the future vis a vis Israel, the Palestinians and peace my interviewee was doubtful while remaining hopeful. I am for peace. I am always willing to negotiate peace. He shared. I lost my son. So I want peace.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Can't Resist

Okay so regarding yesterday's post - the one down there under this one or linked here - I wrote "no comment" but I am unable to stifle.

White man? What is that? Like... National Geographic Explorer meets The History Channel cereal box episode?

Or maybe it's a morning breakfast version of a Daktari rerun?

Who in the heck uses the term White Man anyhow?

Thanks. I feel better.

Over & out from a thin strip of land adjacent to the African continent

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Cereal, Jah Mon

A Saturday morning ritual at Chez Raph & Steph is sugar coated cereal. Raphael gets it once a week - on Saturday mornings - and each time the box runs out (average every two months), he chooses a new variety.

This week was purchase time and young Rapha opted for an Israeli brand - Telma's "Cocoa-Man" Chocolate Puffs. (gee, sound familiar?) The picture on the front of the box is of a Rasta looking guy playing an electric keyboard; on the back a graffiti-tagged brick wall is accented by an African man breakdancing in the fore.

Bubbled excerpts for reading while munching include information on "Breakdance" "Graffiti" and "Hip Hop". I share:

(Hip Hop) is an entire culture that was born on the streets of New York and started by African Americans who came to America. It had a rhythm unknown to the white man until that point.

Huh? Okay. Never mind. Get on with eating Cocoaman and I won't comment.

On a COMPLETELY different track, a link to a piece I wrote in today's San Fran Chronicle..

peace out all you Rasta, Hip Hop Rhythm fans!

Friday, February 09, 2007


En route to meet a friend for coffee earlier this week, I spotted an extremely large hooded crow cawing noisily atop a trash can.

Cycling past, I put on my best crow voice and cawed back at him/her in a jovial manner. But apparently crows don't know from jovial.

Seconds later, I was dive bombed. The crow took flight after my communication and then swooped down into my hair with its talons, attempting to embed and lift. It gave up - I ate a heavy breakfast that morning - and flew ahead of me to land on a tree branch.

I was gobsmacked. I stopped my bicycle and stared up into the tree.

Did that..? Was that...? OMG! Then I cursed at the thing in Hebrew because - just between us - I was frightened of riding away lest 'ol humorless dive bomb me again. Eventually I collected myself and left.

I couldn't help but remember an excerpt from Robyn Davidson's Tracks describing a wild crow that played with her during her Australian camp-out by swooping down from a tree branch each morning and stealing her toothbrush just as she was about to pick it up.

Clever these fowl are. But not all that nice.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

You're It~

Liza over at Something Something e-mailed yesterday to let me know she had tagged me on a meme. I was happy. Excited. All this time I felt like the wallflower at the school dance waiting on the sidelines to be picked. FINALLY someone tagged me!

Then I saw the meme. Specifically geared towards writers, it requires that the taggee make a contract with him/herself a la....

".... I will make serious attempts to market my work, and do my best to create opportunities in pursuit of my dream to be a "real" writer. I will continue to use my skills to help others, and will continue to use my writing to promote ideas and issues about which I am passionate. . . "

This is all very noble and good and you go girrrrllll Liza! But where are the questions about my favorite ice cream flavor? Or my greatest all time summer vacation? Or how many donuts I can down at one sitting? You mean I got tagged and I actually have to think and write and make promises? Okay:

I promise not to plagiarise or pay other people to write my stories.

I quit. I don't care if I stand on the wall for eternity. I want a meme that will, once and for all, afford me the opportunity to admit to the world my once upon a time wish to hang out with Tony Danza. There!

Your friend, Stefanella

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Kiddie Korner

My five-year-old was playing with his 5-year-old friend - of the girl persuasion - and I overheard her say:

Let's get married
Why? he asked
Because I love you she said, hugging him around the neck
And he ran out of the room in a panic

Schoingemacht. The head-start program

Apropo children, a gem of a cartoon sent by a friend in Denmark...

Monday, February 05, 2007

"Dear Officer"

On numerous occasions while traversing Tel Aviv, I have noticed cars or trucks or vans illegally parked on sidewalks, double parked in bus zones, standing in tow away zones or blocking driveways. Invariably, the offending vehicle will have a wee note stuck behind a wiper blade on the windshield.

Being of curious nature, I generally approach and read. Often, the notes go something like this:

Dear Kind and Benevolent Traffic Officer: (how's that for pathetic?)
I am merely inside for a few moments while transporting a heavy load of groceries to my sick, invalid and housebound mother. I am certain you love your mother as I love mine and will find it in your heart to refrain from issuing a ticket.

Yours truly...a tax paying, hard working citizen of this fine country we both share. P.S. Where did you serve in the army? I was in the Paratroopers Unit in the north in '92. Maybe we were in the same unit? Your friend, Yossi.


But I laugh each and every time I see one of these notes and I wonder how the patrolling DMV guys react...

Sunday, February 04, 2007

Daily Duality

The longer you stick around in one place, the more you become de-sensitized to its unique characteristics. What once grabbed your attention, evoked laughter or raised the hairs on your nape becomes the daily daily. What, there was a tremor today? 4.5 you say? Didn't feel it. OR Well sure it takes 3 hours to open a checking account at the bank. Isn't that the way it is everywhere?

Occasionally, the odd visitor will point out something unusual he/she has noticed thereby pulling you out of your cynical fog.

Today I coffee'd with such a person - It was our first meeting; she's in Holy Land Central (HLC) from Jersey for a visit & contemplating moving here full time. She was hoping I could hook her up with some job contacts. After giving her a list of people to phone or e-mail, she commented:

This would not happen back home. People wouldn't meet with you if they didn't know you and just hand out contacts. It's really amazing because even top level people have been so forthcoming.

And I contemplated what she said and remembered years ago when Yitzhak Rabin was assassinated. A few months after the event, I made some phone calls within the biz and got his wife Lea's phone number from a colleague. Even then, already a full fledged jaded journalist, I was amazed at the accessibility of higher-ups.

It's the oddity of this place. It has the tremendous scope because of the political ramifications but at the end of the day, it's really just a very loud small town.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Paris, Anyone?

I like Paris. I think it's a cool place. Fantastic to walk around. Huge. Easy to navigate.

Cool architecture. Cool art. Great fashion. Fab but really Fab Food.

And here's another reason to swoon over the City of Love:

Paris City Hall announced it has selected French outdoor advertising firm JCDecaux SA to operate a new free bicycle service in the capital.

Joining other European cities like the Dutch capital, Amsterdam, Paris wants to make thousands of bikes available for free to commuters, strollers and tourists -- in part to help cut down on pollution.
JCDecaux's Somupi unit is to have some 14,100 bikes deployed in the capital by this summer. City Hall's choice of contractor was announced Monday.
THAT is cool. As is the above image of morning commuters in Beijing. Speaking of, I highly recommend Beijing Bicycle. One of my all time fave films.
But I digress. Stay green. Peace out.