Thursday, November 29, 2018

Bringing Israeli tech to Africa to improve lives....

Just wanted to highlight this great video from Innovation Africa.

They are a wonderful non-profit that helps bring Israeli technology to Africa and improve things there.

Our good friends, the Lustmans, were recently in Uganda as part of their son's Bar Mitzvah project and they brought solar panels to a rural village that had never, ever had electricity.   The celebrations were amazing.

The Israeli heart and mind just transformed the lives of 1 million Africans forever from Innovation: Africa on Vimeo.

Friday, November 23, 2018

Movie: Bohemian Rhapsody

Took Paco (13) and Nadia (10) to see the new movie about Queen, Bohemian Rhapsody.

What was so remarkable was that all 3 of us thought it was a fantastic story. The ebbs and flows of the actual movie are analogous to the ebbs and flow of the titular song.

I thought Rami Malek was just just magnificent as Freddie Mercury.

One of Queen's albums was one of the first I ever owned and "Another One Bites the Dust" was one of the earliest songs I remember listening to on the radio.

There were so many twists and turns. Emotional highs, lows, and so many different narratives.

It's rare that all 3 of us like a movie and this is one of them.

Monday, November 19, 2018

AirBNB is anti-Israel...and only anti-Israel

The following is a letter that my dad sent to AirBNB about their newly instituted anti-Israel practices.

Your one-sided decision to refuse to list locations in Israel located in Judea and Samaria (or the West Bank settlements as you reference them) is one-sided and unprincipled.
Japan seeks the return of Sakhalin Islands/Kuril Islands occupied by Russia since World War II. 

Is Airbnb going to be in the political arena of deciding disputed claims for territory?

If so, then you should consider closing down operations in many of the following areas of the world. 

If you have not already, then you should consider delisting Russian occupied areas of Crimea, Ukraine, and the Republic of Georgia.

Also, Romania has territory containing 2 million Hungarians that the victors in World War I gave to Romania.

Russia took part of Poland, and Poland took part of Germany in the arrangements after World War II.

Mexico claims a substantial part of the U.S. taken in the Mexican War in 1846, a grievance that remains fresh today among Mexicans.

Bolivia has claims against against territory wrested by Chile, dating back to 1904, which the current Bolivian President seeks to reverse by going to the International Court.

The Argentines claim the British-held Falkland Islands and even initiated a war to reclaim it in the 1980’s.

Iraq claims Kuwait and waged a war, where the United States and other countries in the early 1990’s sent troops to repel Iraq.

Forty-five per cent of Scots voted in 2014 to separate from the United Kingdom, as Scotland was conquered three centuries ago by the British. 

Northern Ireland has a population that seeks to opt out of the UK because it was conquered militarily by the UK by Oliver Cromwell and then settlers were introduced from England and Scotland. 

Finland has claims against Russian occupation of what was Finland until World War II.   

Some in Corsica want out of France, as do some in Brittany and Normandy. 

Just below a majority of those who live in the now Canadian province of Quebec wanted out of Canada in our time.  The British, centuries earlier, defeated the French and took control of Quebec. 

Does Airbnb operate in Tibet, where the Chinese have complete control and the Dalai Lama has devoted his life to secure independence for Tibet.

What do you plan to do with Aboriginal claims to Australia or Maori to New Zealand as well as territorial disputes in South America, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia. 

Will you post sites located in Kashmir, controlled by India where Pakistan has maintained claims for 70 years? 

Oh, I forgot to mention Hawaii, where the Hawaiian of Polynesian origin make territorial and national claims.   

In fact, the Palestinians never had a country.  The Palestinian claim is for every inch of what is now Israel and Israel’s destruction. 

Airbnb is getting into a thicket where it is choosing sides based on a faulty political understanding or bias.

Reverse your decision.

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

How to Give a Great Bar Mitzvah Gift

Paco got some wonderful, generous gifts for his Bar-Mitzvah, but the one from the Lichts take the cake.

Not so much because of the gift itself (which was fantastic), but because it came with self-addressed fill-in-the-blank thank you note template.

As any Bar/Bat Mitzvah will tell you...the thank you note writing part is one of the least cherished tasks.

Which leads me to conclude that the Lichts are on to something here. The best Bar Mitzvah gifts include the thank you note!

Thursday, November 01, 2018

Hockey Night in Canada...

I would not say I am the biggest hockey fan in the world, but I certainly appreciate the game. Definitely during playoff time.  I usually make it to one (at most two) Capitals games per year.

Like any sport, hockey aficionados are passionate, knowledgeable, and appreciate the  nuances of the game.

There is probably no country in the world that has as many fans per capita as Canada.

Now, I've watched a hockey game with Canadians fact, it was the Women's Gold Medal Game from the 2018 Olympics against the US.  The US won (I had to slink out of the room) and it was great. You learn a lot about a sport by watching with serious fans.

Tonight, however, I had an amazing privilege to attend a Vancouver Canucks game in Vancouver and, not only that, we had front row seats against the glass. It was crazy good. Here's a video that Google auto-made for me and some pics are below. I feel exceedingly grateful for this opportunity.

The Rogers Arena was a great venue and I was impressed by how many staff people were on hand to help...those Canadians, so nice!

Another cool thing was to see how multi-cultural the crowd was (Vancouver is that way as a city), but it seems to me that hockey has a melting pot-like effect on Canadians.

And, this may sound crazy, but since I know all the words to O, Canada! (how I became an honorary Canadian), I actually sang the entire song and got a wee bit emotional as I did.

One of my "bucket list" items was to watch a live hockey game in Canada. Mission accomplished.

Plus...the Canucks won 4-2 and now I know who "Johnny Canuck" is.