The Best New Year’s E-card. Ever.

To send yours, click here.

Got Weekend Plans?

Three suggestions:

1) Catch one of the last three performances of Sandra Bernhardt’s revival of her one-woman show Without You I’m Nothing. The 8pm show on Saturday is sold out, but there are limited tickets available for the late nite show and the Sunday matinee.

2) Come to the first Community Cinema Café screening at the Washington DCJCC this Sunday at 3pm. This month’s free screeing previews the award-winning documentary The Chicago 10.

3) Still buzzing from the debates? Take some time to work on a t-shirt design for our Indecision 5769 Election Night Party.

Rosh Hashanah starts Monday night, so I’ll be fitting in some last-minute sins to repent for next week.

Tonight: Kosher Cooking and Kurds

It is the penultimate evening of the Hyman S. & Freda Bernstein Jewish Literary Festival and there are two sensational authors who have been attracting a lot of attention to feature.

First at 6pm, Ronnie Fein introduces us to Hip Kosher–the burgeoning movement that liberates kosher cuisine from the moribund stereotype of gray meat cooked to the consistency of shoe leather and replaces it with easy-to-prepare recipes that would fit in nicely on any FoodNetwork show. Want an example? How about Lamb Chops with Charmoula Pesto? Or Pepper Crusted Bluefish with Horseradish Yogurt Sauce? Crisped Gilboa Cheese Panini with Fig Jam? You don’t have to be kosher or even Jewish to get your taste buds jumping at the mere description.

Also tonight at 7:30 pm, is Ariel Sabar’s widely heralded My Father’s Paradise: A Son’s Search for His Jewish Past in Kurdish Iraq. In this amazing family history, Sabar traces his father’s journey from his small village in Iraqi Kurdistan, where he was the last boy bar-mitzvahed to his new home in Israel, to his unlikely role as the premier scholar on Aramaic in the world, first at Yale and later at UCLA. Woven into this amazing life, is the story of one thoroughly American son’s quest to understand his roots and by proxy, his enigmatic father. His journey takes us from the skate parks of Southern California to post-Saddam Iraq and back again. This is a book people will be talking about for a long time.

From Saturday Night

A nice moment between Bernard-Henri Lévy and Tamara Handelsman, the Founding Chairperson of the Hyman S. & Freda Bernstein Jewish Literary Festival. BHL delivered the Gerald L. Bernstein Memorial Lecture on Saturday night at the Maison Française.

Andrea Askowitz’s Miserable Lonely Lesbian Pregnancy

Tomorrow’s a full day at the Hyman S. & Freda Bernstein Jewish Literary Festival. Join the Kurlander Program for Gay and Lesbian Outreach and Engagement at an 11 am brunch for Andrea Askowitz’s side-splitting memoir My Miserable Lonely Lesbian Pregnancy. Here’s a taste of what to expect…

Shabbat Surfing–Lit Fest Half-Time Show

Big weekend coming up. Bernard-Henri Lévy is sold out, but Elisa Albert (The Book of Dahlia) and Darin Strauss (Best-selling author of Chang & Eng) both have tickets available on Sunday. Mention the blog and you’re entitled to 2-for-1 tickets for both readings.

It’s been a busy week, and there are many busy days ahead. The following is a PSA: 

In this election season it is important to remember that the Washington DCJCC does not support or oppose candidates for elected public office. Opinions expressed at all programs of the Washington DCJCC belong solely to those expressing them. The Washington DCJCC is committed to presenting a wide selection of programs that present multiple viewpoints and encourage you to visit our website for information on several events relating to this year’s election.

Now for something that is simultaneously religiously irreverent and reverent. From the good folks at

Darin Strauss Gets Late Late

He doesn’t do much reading in this interview, but you can appreciate the absurdity of the situation when Darin Strauss somehow ends up as a guest on Craig Ferguson’s Late Late Show. Expect a slightly more literary experience when Darin reads from More Than It Hurts You on Sunday, September 21 at the Hyman S. & Freda Bernstein Jewish Literary Festival.

Darin actually recounts the experience on a blog he wrote for the summer leg of his book tour.

Ask BHL a Question

The Gerald L. Bernstein Memorial Lecture featuring Bernard-Henri Lévy may be sold out, but that doesn’t mean you’re necessarily shut out. BHL has agreed to answer to answer some questions submitted electronically via our website. We’ll record his answers and post them here after the event. Click here to submit your question.

Bernard-Henri Lévy at the French Embassy is Sold Out

Don’t get left out of these other excellent non-fiction talks and readings at the Hyman S. & Freda Bernstein Jewish Literary Festival:

  • Tuesday, September 16–Edgar Bronfman with Wayne Firestone talk about Hope, Not Fear: A Path to Jewish Renaissance (Birthright Alumni get in free!)
  • Friday, September 19–Jacques Berlinerblau discusses Thumpin’ It: The Use and Abuse of the Bible in Today’s Presidential Politics
  • Tuesday, September 23–Ariel Sabar discusses My Father’s Paradise: A Son’s Search for His Jewish Past in Kurdish Iraq
  • Wednesday, September 24–Masha Gessen discusses Blood Matters: From Inherited Illness to Designer Babies, How the World and I Found Ourselves in the Future of the Gene
  • Wednesday, September 24–Stephen Joel Trachtenberg talks about Big Man on Campus with Francine Zorn Trachtenberg

Adam Langer Part Deux

In my rush to put up our interview with Adam Langer before Shabbat, I forgot to include this “trailer” for Ellington Boulevard: A Novel in A-Flat.

%d bloggers like this: