December 4, 2020

Awesome Vase 4 Shabbat Shalom

Awesome purple vase for Shabbat Shalom!

Love the cool designs on it and all the colors and shapes. 

Tops off a week of hard work and creativity and eases us into the day of rest and spirituality. 

All it needs is some beautiful flowers to go into the vase and voila!  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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December 2, 2020

How To Keep A Secret


This was a saying from the movie, The 2nd, that I liked:

Three people can keep a secret. 

When two are dead!

It's similar to when you ask someone a question that they don't want to answer and they say:

I can tell you, but then I'd have to kill you.  

Both of these make a lot of sense, LOL.  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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December 1, 2020

Ice Cream Correctness


Thought this was a nice advertising for ice cream in the food court at the mall. 

It's funny that they painted this over some doors, and you can see the lock in the center, right under the "Bomb Pop."

In the age of radical terrorism, I wonder if that's the best name for ice pops geared for children (and adults). 

I think we need to consider being emotionally intelligent and politically correct.

Since it's red, white, and blue, how about rebranding it as the American Pop (with no ticking time bomb association)!  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 30, 2020

Doing A Double Take


Wow, I had to do a quick double take driving past this police officer. 

No, he wasn't telling me to pullover and stop. 

Actually, he isn't telling anyone anything. 

He's a statue standing on the corner in Chevy Chase, Maryland. 

Make you look and slow down! 

Heck, who needs real people anymore for anything! ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 29, 2020

@Underground Railway Trail










(Credit Photos: Andy Blumenthal)


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Mastering Cheerfulness

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "Mastering Cheerfulness." 
During Covid-19, it is easy to get down about all the people getting sick (many dying) and for the rest of us the intense feelings of isolation. However, during this time (and particularly this week of Thanksgiving), I am learning the importance of staying positive and appreciating all G-d’s blessings that we do have. More broadly, I am coming to understand that inside a person, G-d exists amidst love, kindness and cheerfulness: these are elements that nourish the flame of our soul and wherein G-d happily coexists with us. It makes a lot of sense that when we are angry, jealous, or sad, the holy Shechinah (presence of G-d) cannot fully reside inside us. Because G-d Himself is gracious, kind, and loving and created us from this, so His spirit within us (our soul) flourishes amidst these feelings, but diminishes within us like a flame without oxygen when we distance ourselves emotionally and spiritually.

Just like one candlelight extinguishes the darkness around it, so also the light that we nurture within ourselves can extinguish the darkness that we occasionally feel inside.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

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November 27, 2020

Shabbat Shalom Bowl and Cup Set

Cute bowl and cup set! 

They say Shabbat Shalom to all Y'all!

Quick funny anecdote from today: 

When I inquired with a friend about their Thanksgiving dinner yesterday. 

They, of course, said they ate too much!

But it was funny as hey said that, they made a big round (belly) sign with their arms. 

That image was worth a thousand turkeys. ;-)

(Credit Graphic: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 26, 2020

The Cost Is The Cost

Brilliant quote by Sholem Aleichem:

The less you pay for something, the more it costs. 

You might think you're getting a bargain by paying less, but in the end, paying less ends up costing you more in troubles and headaches. 

The cost is really the cost. 

When you cut a penny in half, it still costs you the whole penny! 

You can't nickel and dime it to death. ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 25, 2020

Happy Thanksgiving!

Beautiful sunflowers for a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday!

(Credit Painting: Jane Wolf)


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November 24, 2020

Who You Calling Bull?

For those who watched Fear The Walking Dead this week...

You know what I mean with this picture.

Zombies + Taxidermy = Some scary grafted dudes!

No one can call bull on this show. ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 23, 2020

What A Dumb Education System

School is supposed to help teach our children. 

Unfortunately, the education system here starts out dumb from the get-go!

As the WSJ today reports, $400 billion out of a $1.4 trillion educational loan portfolio is likely uncollectible.  

That's almost 30% bad debt!

But what is unforgivable is that they system is geared towards crappy lending practices. 

As per a former head of the Congressional Budget Office (CBO):

"We make no attempt to evaluate the quality of the borrower, the ability to repay, the effectiveness of the loans...[so] the taxpayer ends up picking up the tab."

Is that fair to all the responsible students and families that pay for their education and repay their student loans?

This systems is so broken, and on top of it yet we want to forgive more student debt all together and teach our children to be deadbeats!

It seems like this education system can't teach anything of value except how to play an already broken system!  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 22, 2020

There's Someone For Everyone

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "There's Someone For Everyone."
I'm sitting resting on Shabbat, minding my own business, and reading the Favorite Tales of Sholom Aleichem, but then my wife tells me a story circulating in the news that seemed like it could even be one better. At least my exaggerated version of it did as a tall tale in the making.

It starts like this: There is a woman who did not have a lot of luck with men...

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 20, 2020

Modeh Ani - Thank you G-d

Beautiful song after the prayer, Modeh Ani that Jews say every morning immediately when we wake up. 
I give thanks to You, living and eternal King for you have restored my soul within me with mercy; Your faithfulness is great.

Thank you G-d for everything you do for us.

Your mercy endures forever!  

As Sholom Aleichem say: we should not know the taste of hunger.  ;-)

(Credit Video: Omer Adam עומר אדם)

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November 19, 2020

Vaccine Fears

So I was talking with someone about the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines coming out to protect again Coronavirus. 

They tell me that the news is reporting 95% effectiveness and then they pull out their smartphone and show me a cartoon of someone taking the vaccine and their face is all deformed (I won't go into the details). 

So I ask him:

Are you going to talk the vaccine?

He says:

"No!"

I ask:

Do you take the flu vaccine?

Again he says :

No, it's poison!

He thinks some more and says (jokingly, I believe):

And if some big burly guys try to hold me down and make me take it, I'll tell them I'm gonna go out and get a gun and come back tomorrow and shoot them. 

Bottom line: there is some real fear and apprehension out there about these vaccines. 

And surely, some people do have negative effects--whatever that percentage is. 

Personally, I will take the vaccine. I would rather try and fail (hopefully not), than never try at all!  

How long the vaccine is effective for--that's another matter all together. ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 18, 2020

I'm Sure You Did

So I thought this was pretty funny at the pool this week. 

I am about to get into the swimming pool. 

A water aerobics class is letting out and a bunch of older ladies are on the way out of the water. 

One of them stops, give me a big smirk, and says:

"Don't worry we warmed it up for you!"

I thought for quick second, and said with a completely straight face:

"I'm sure you did!"

The joys of swimming life.  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 17, 2020

Oh Baby It’s Cold Inside

Funny advertising for a new furnace.

Santa is freezing his butt off. ;-)

(Credit Video: Michelle Blumenthal)

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November 16, 2020

Geometric Shapes Inspire

I like these geometric shapes sort of just hanging out there. 

They're interesting in that they speak to a person, but it's left up to your imagination what they are actually saying. 

Feels a little futuristic and from alien space. 

Words may mean nothing, but shapes can be a universal language. 

Go figure!  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 15, 2020

Humming The Hatikvah

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "Humming The Hatikvah."

But as I walk in the water, feeling both the softness and purity of the beautiful water as well as the buoyancy and resistance of it, I think to myself that no Jews should not be familiar and know The Israel national anthem. After 2,000 painful years in exile culminating in the concentration camps like Theresienstadt and The Six Million murdered Jews, we all must know that now G-d has kept his promise to our forefathers and returned us to The Holy Land.

Assuredly, we are living in the time of miracles, the redemption, and soon to be the coming of the Mashiach. Now is the time not just to hum The Hatikvah, but to bring every Jew back, including me and my family. It’s almost time to go home, where we will sing and dance, with hearts brimming over with Joy, before our L-rd, and once again go to worship at our holy Temple in Jerusalem. May it be His will! Amen.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 13, 2020

Donut Art

Who would have thunk it?

But donuts can be wall art!

Another interesting experiment may have been throwing the donuts against the wall. 

The jelly and custard splat with the chocolate and sprinkles smear might have made some new amazing masterpiece!  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 11, 2020

Seeing It Through Glass

This was a nice glass display at Saks Fifth Avenue.

Somehow they make everything look so cool.

The designer clothing from floor to ceiling doesn't hurt. 

But seeing it through the lens of these glass balls only adds to the pricey out-of-world experience. ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 10, 2020

Can Anyone Say Election Fraud?

  • Vote rigging.
  • Dumping of valid ballots. 
  • Counting invalid late ballots.
  • Changing the postmark of ballots. 
  • Preparing phony ballots.
  • Accepting unsigned ballots.
  • Voters who voted multiple times. 
  • "Software glitches" switching votes

If this isn't considered fraud, then why are we even bothering to hold an election in the first place? 

And moreover, why do we pretend that we're a democracy? ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 8, 2020

From Creation to the End of Times

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "From Creation to the End of Times."
 
As Jews, we travel through history to our destiny along an arc of birth, growth, decline and the learning from our mistakes, to ultimately the fulfillment of our divine mission for world enlightenment. Jewish history can be broken down in a couple of amazing ways: first by every two millennium from creation forward, and second, starting with Abraham, in 400-500 year increments.

We have an incredible history that takes us along a clear trajectory from our founding of monotheism and special relationship with G-d as His "chosen" in the receiving the Torah and its transmission, to our many weaknesses and failures in going astray from our mission, and ultimately to our redemption and achievement of G-d's purpose for us in bringing his teachings and glory to all the world.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 7, 2020

Colorful Balloons

What a beautiful unique porcelain statue.

A lady with a baby and a bouquet of colorful balloons. 

Really like how the colors of the balloons accent her shawl, scarf, and dress.   

Even the dreary "olden days" are made more cheery with these colorful balloons. 

I'll take a dozen of those today and every day for a good while to come! ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 6, 2020

We Are The 99%!

This election demonstrated one thing...that we are the 99%!

The too often proverbial suckers under the heel of the power and money elite in society. 

Fed phony and biased information to try and turn us against each other and manipulate us to believe and act in ways beneficial to those who want to retain, and endlessly grow, their wealth and status. 

Like good soldiers, the underclasses are the pawns in the global games of Power Chess and Monopoly. 

The 99% are completely expendable. 

They are blind and will follow orders. 

The 1% likes them dumb and works hard to try and keep them that way!

Anything, if the rich can get richer and the powerful can get more power. 

The schnooks at the bottom looking up, with begging eyes, get the scraps thrown off the table and unto the floor where they fight for a morsel, while killing each other for it. 

The elite use the media, Hollywood, polls, and radicalism, so that they can sit up high and mighty and watch the rest of us with a wide smirk of disdain on their fat, arrogant faces, as we drink it all in. 

How long will the 99% be fooled and played?

Exploited and even thrown under the bus by the narcissist and greedy 1%. 

Where is the democracy in that?  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 5, 2020

Truth or Lie?

Our election system is the envy of the world?

Our pollsters know what they are talking about?

Our news media is honest and unbiased?

Our political system is rational, mainstream, and values integrity? 

Our democracy is safe and not under serious threat from within?

Oh dear, Pinocchio has died of an overdose! ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 4, 2020

If The Other Side Wins The Election

Still no firm results on who will be the next President of the U.S. of A. 

I think this is how a lot of people feel...

    if the other side wins the election (look where he's picking from)!

A picture is worth a thousand words. 

One thing we know for sure is that the polls and the "Fake News" media got it all wrong again! ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 3, 2020

Who Will Be The Next Captain of America?

Big day today with the U.S. Presidential election!

Who will be the next Captain of America?

Everyone is on the edge of their seats. 

As one friend said: 

Half the country will be elated and the other half miserable.

Maybe in the sense of how polarized we've become, it really is a no-win proposition. 

Too bad we can't vote for the real Captain America?  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 2, 2020

Election + Covid = Alcohol

Between this election and Coronavirus, how can any of us truly be feeling?

This old bottle of wine is looking mighty fine to me about now. 

Sometimes, we all need something for the pain!

And this election and the plague has been nothing but painful. 

The question is drink it now or hold it for tomorrow night. ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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November 1, 2020

Tefillin: Our Wi-Fi To G-d

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "Tefillin: Our Wi-Fi To G-d."

I remember not long ago my son-in-law, Itzchak telling me:
Tefillin are our antennas to Hashem!

And like an antenna, we are able to pray and have our signal amplified to G-d as well as be able to be imbued with G-d’s spirit and direction to us in life. With the Straps of the Tefillin as well as the boxes and knots, we spell out the letters of G-d’s name on our head and on our arm. Thus, we are not only wrapped in this “spiritual antenna,” but we literally wear G-d’s words on the parchment in the Tefillin boxes and with His holy name stamped on our centers of thought and feeling.

In short, Tefillin is opportunity for us to network over Wi-Fi with the Master of the Universe. It takes us out of the daily grind of looking at the world in selfish, shortsightedness of what’s in it for me today, and how can I get more gold and goodies than the next guy or girl. Inside all of us, we have a soul from G-d, and through our spiritual Wi-Fi connection, we can energize that part of ourselves with a good, strong signal straight to the Big Guy upstairs.

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumethal)
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October 29, 2020

Someone's Always Watching

These days someone is always watching.

Whether someone is peering at you from upstairs or around the corner.

Or there is a surveillance camera.

Or someone is recording you on their smartphone. 

You are never really alone. 

And even IF, and that's a big if, that no one person is watching.

Remember that G-d above still sees everything!  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal) 


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October 28, 2020

Overwhelming Public Fatigue

China Fatigue

Covid Fatigue

Election Fatigue

Exaggerations Fatigue

Extremism Fatigue

Fear Fatigue

Facebook Waste of Time Fatigue

Lies and Corruption Fatigue

Media Manipulation Fatigue

Power Politics Fatigue

Racism and Hate Fatigue

Riots and Looting Fatigue

Fatigue Fatigue ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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October 27, 2020

Meat On A Spit

Nothing like loads of meat roasting on the spit over a fire.

The fat drips and the meat is smoking and juicy hot. 

Is it the animal in us or do we just know good food when we see it?

Schwarma or a BBQ, you can taste it!

And it hits the spot right on like nothing else can.  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal) 


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October 26, 2020

Chucky Rules The Road


This was a scary mother of a truck. 

It had Chucky perched spread-eagle over the front crash bumper. 

Imagine looking in your rearview mirror and seeing this barreling down on you. 

Chucky rules the road and he's coming for you.

It's too late to run and hide. 

He's gonna get you!

Consider yourself dead meat and it's not even Friday the 13th. ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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October 25, 2020

@Sandy Spring Sculpture Garden

 





 (Credit Photos: Andy Blumenthal)

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October 24, 2020

The Elections: Perfecting Our Imperfections

Please see my new article in The Times of Israel called, "The Elections: Perfecting Our Imperfections."

Clearly, from the President on down to each and every one of us, we can be certain that none of us is perfect. However, G-d put us here, precisely, to have the opportunity to repair our imperfections. In this earthly world, our soul is tested, and we thereby have the opportunity to come out stronger and better because of it. The challenges in this world provide the "purification by fire" that our souls need to elevate themselves from past mistakes or imperfections. In essence, G-d in his ultimate benevolence — of love, kindness, and giving — bestows on us, His children, the chance to learn and grow and to realize our potential!

In short, while our elections leave us a lot to be desired in terms of the candidates for the highest office of this great land, we can see from the presidential candidates on down to the citizens of this country and to those around the world that there is both shortcomings and the potential for becoming the people that G-d knows we can really be.

(Credit Graphic: Andy Blumenthal)
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October 22, 2020

Swingers Swinging!

He and She. 

Swinging on the swing.

Arms around the other. 

There's love between these two. 

It's fun to swing together. 

Caring and sharing. 

Two is always better than one!  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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October 21, 2020

Watch Where You Stick Your Nose

This was an interesting sign:

We love it when you stick you nose in our business...

Gee, I sure hope this isn't referring to a manure business.  LOL

In short, be careful into what stink you stick you nose in or know when to mind your own business!  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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October 20, 2020

Best Looking Bees


These are some of the best looking bees that I've ever seen.

They almost look friendly. 

No stinging, please!

Go ahead and pollinate the beautiful flowers. 

Then go back to the hive and make us some delicious, sweet honey. 

Bees bees bees. Buzz buzz buzz.  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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October 19, 2020

Magical Blue Pendant

Thought this blue pendant was just magical!

Beautiful blue color and love the inlaid design over it. 

Middle eastern style and it's a standout!

There is mystery, eloquence, and even some unapologetic sexiness to it.  ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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October 18, 2020

Two Terms In Office

Funny sign in store. 

Limit Politicians to 2 Terms:  

One in Office.  

One in Prison. 

Now this doesn't speak very well of our leadership.

What about the one's that have decades in office, and the time is used for their own selfish purposes and not for the people?

Where power and money is the purpose rather than advancing social well-being.

Where personal and party agendas are the playbill rather than doing what is right, plain and simple.

Where scoring points against your adversary or completely taking them down is the strategy rather than reaching out and working hand-in-hand to achieve our nation's greatness. 

We have fallen a long way from what I would imagine the founding fathers had in mind for this great democracy. 

Perhaps, the biggest problem is that we have stopped even trying. ;-)

(Credit Photo: Andy Blumenthal)


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