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Lamrot Hakol (Despite Everything)

Musings and kvetchings and Torah thoughts from an unconventional Orthodox Jew.

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"I blog, therefore I am". Clearly not true, or I wouldn't exist except every now and then.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Scratching the Wall with a Filed Down Spoon

I'm about to turn 43. This Wednesday is my birthday by the Catholic calendar (it always irks my Dad when I call it that), but it's only 4 days later by the Jewish one.

And it's not about getting old. It's just about... I don't know. I feel like I'm in a cell, and that I should scratch a mark into the wall for one more year down. That much closer to when I can get out of here. Or be eligible for parole, if I should be that lucky.

There are times when the prospect of Olam Haba simply horrifies me. I know that we don't know what it's going to be like, but I can't even begin to imagine anything that would make up for this life. My gut tells me it's just going to be more of the same, and that maybe there'll be no end to it. Imagine: no oblivion. Ever. I can't imagine anything more depressing.

The phrase "It didn't come too soon" keeps echoing in my head. I'm just so bloody tired of all of this.


Anonymous Mark said...

This post makes me so sad. You are doing so much for Judaism, and to feel so trapped!
I bless you that hashem should fulfill all your requests for the good, and you should have much happiness in this world and the next.

10:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's a shame that Judaism hasn't brought you any happiness, either in how you feel about yourself or how you treat other people. But, have a happy birthday anyway.

11:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Per your beautiful poetry, would you indeed agree that you've "harvested what you've sown", Lisa? Aside from your family (who has put up with so much) and your partner, where have you sown kindness in this world?

11:29 AM  
Anonymous Strugglight said...

To the anonymous harvest/sow post, she's a great mom and great friend and has some truly insightful ideas which she shares.

If you're in the mood to knock other people down, I'd recommend taking a closer look at yourself and see if there's something internal you can work on first.

1:54 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...


Thanks for your kind words. I don't know how much I'm doing, but I'm doing my best.


If someone who plays golf has a bad day and is really upset, would you say, "It's a shame that playing golf hasn't brought you any happiness"?

Not to compare Judaism to golf, chas v'shalom, but it just seems like a really dumb thing for you to say. Do you think Judaism is supposed to be some sort of personal panacea? Like "Accept the Torah into your heart and be saved", or junk like that?

The crap going on in my life is what it is. It wouldn't be any different if I were an atheist or a believer in the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

I expect that your comment was just an excuse to bash Judaism and bash me, all in one concise little package. While I admire the efficiency, I think it's sad that you'd respond that way.


I'm going to give Anonymous1 the benefit of the doubt and assume that you're two different Anonymouses, because while Anonymous1 was annoying, you're simply trash. All the two of you have in common is the cowardice of anonymity, and a willingness to be gratuitously rude. I considered deleting your comment, but I decided not to. Some day, maybe you'll grow up and your comment will still be here to serve as a reminder for the more mature you of who you really are.


Thanks. I didn't know you read this, actually. In fact, I'm actually surprised to see how many people do.

2:33 PM  
Blogger Milhouse said...

I decided a while ago that people's lives ought to be measured in base 18. Here's a calculator. And happy 27th.

3:32 PM  
Blogger etzba ketana said...

are you suffering chronic pain? bless you with geulah amitit

8:32 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Thank you, etzba ketana. Actually, that's mostly gone now.

9:31 AM  
Blogger Joseph said...

43 is only a little over 6 Celsius (as Tom Lehrer would put it).

4:51 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...


6:29 PM  
Anonymous Sophie said...

Lisa, from your post about where you grew up, I see you're in Chicago. For a non-O Jew who is interested in immersing more in O life, where would be good places to visit / stroll / get a sense of the whole feel? I have heard Devon Avenue; any more suggestions? Thanks.

10:16 AM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Devon is good. But you should try finding a shul, or meeting people generally. There's a Likutei Peshatim sheet that comes out weekly, which lists a lot of events going on in the frum community in Chicago.


Here's this week's, for instance:


Please note that I don't necessarily endorse anything listed on this sheet.

2:39 PM  
Anonymous sophie said...

Thank you very much, Lisa.

4:59 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

You could also come to us for Shabbat, Sophie. As sharp as I am online, we're pretty easygoing in real life.

11:03 AM  
Anonymous sophie said...

Thank you, Lisa, for your kind offer. I'm a Reform Jew so more traditional observance is all new to me and I wouldn't know what to expect or do during Shabbat. Well, I know enough not to expect you to drive me around :-).

7:19 PM  
Anonymous sciencewizard said...

...Which will give the friendly type-O's great pleasure as they enthusiastically explain the details to you. Seriously. Pick a venue and introduce yourself around. (And I can definitely recommend the scene at Lisa's. They're fun people, and real good about accepting others where they're coming from.)

7:16 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

Seriously, Sophie. Drop me an e-mail, and you're more than welcome to come for a meal. You can meet our 6 year old princess.

8:28 PM  
Anonymous sophie said...

Thanks for your offer, Lisa. I will most likely wait until the summer (I have two children who will be away at camp and it will be easier for me) but I am definitely thinking about it.

6:36 AM  
Blogger Anonymous said...

I'm really sorry to read that you feel (felt? or is that wishful thinking) this way.

You have an interesting and lively blog. I hope this too shall pass.

9:12 PM  

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