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Bamba in Dakar

Originally posted July 9, 2011.

On my final day in Senegal, I left the comfort of Thies, the friendship of my friends in Darou Mouride and Keur Songo, the routine of waking up each morning and spending the subsequent hours confronting the horrors of abject poverty. I left all these things and more and headed back towards the nation's capital, Dakar.

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In Africa

Standing on a rooftop, I looked around, and felt anywhere but home. As far as the eye could see was a morass of concrete and dirt. The thick humid air smelt of smoke. Read more

Jew in a Church

I’m up for a few days in Northern California, visiting my old college romping grounds, catching up with long-missed friends, and enjoying a the passing moments of a cool Pacific winter. Read more

How You See It

Shortly after the presidential election, I got a call from my dad.

“Do you remember your first interaction with a black man?” he asked. I did not. So he began to tell me a story.

I was three. He and I walked down the street. I probably had a red wagon in tow – it went everywhere in the neighborhood with me. I probably wore black and white saddle shoes – my mother made me, I will resent it till the day I die. Read more

The Greatest Experiment of Them All

Socialist enclaves. The revival of an ancient language. Oases in the desert. A Hebrew metropolis. A Jewish Democracy. Bamba, nargilla, El Al.

This day, Israel, the Jewish State, the Third Jewish Commonwealth, turns sixty. I’m sure the country is replete right now with flags and parties and many a drunk Jew. Read more