Heritage Florida Jewish News - Central Florida's Independent Jewish Voice

By Gloria Yousha
Scene Around 

Scene Around


Shawn Paris

The words of Martin Niemoller...

"First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out... because I was not a socialist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out...because I was not a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out... because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me... and there was no one left to speak for me."

(I remembered these famous words as I was preparing to write this column. I feel they are most appropriate, especially at this time.)

Trouble in Ukraine...

The following report comes directly from the March 2014 World Jewish Congress Digest (WJC). It is extremely timely:

"The vicious beating of an Israeli-born Hebrew teacher in the Ukrainian capital, Kiev, in what local Jewish leaders say was an anti-Semitic incident drew sharp condemnation from the World Jewish Congress.

(Remember Babi Yar during World War II? It was a ravine in Kiev, Ukraine. Just saying.)

"BORIS FUCHSMANN, president of the Jewish Confederation of Ukraine, and JOSEF ZISSELS, chairman of the Association of Jewish Organizations and Communities of Ukraine, both vice presidents of the WJC, said the community believed the beating was the result of anti-Semitic incitement and extremist activity seen in Kiev in recent days, including a torchlight march by supporters of the anti-Semitic party Svoboda and the appearance of swastikas in Jewish areas. Communal officials met with state security services to seek more police protection for the Jewish community."

Also, recently a synagogue in the Crimean city of Simferopol was defaced as Ukrainian and pro-Russian forces clashed. The synagogue's façade was sprayed with swastikas and the words "Death to Jews." There are more than 15,000 Jews in Crimea and the situation continues to change daily. The future remains uncertain. The WJC has contacted Ukrainian authorities to ensure the safety of Jewish communities. But it is important that Jews around the world (including us) remain active, engaged and vigilant.

What can we do? Money is always needed and for further information, we can go online to worldjewishcongress.org/Ukraine.

Remember the two words... "NEVER AGAIN."

The three S's...

"What are they?," you ask. They are 1. soft, 2. smooth, 3. special... but what about the fourth S? Okay, here it is. 4. sexy.

All these S's apply when one refers to singer, SHAWN PARIS!

Shawn is the entertainer at the next Congregation Ohev Shalom Senior's meeting on Sunday, April 6 at the synagogue, 613 Concourse Parkway South, Maitland. The show begins promptly at 2 p.m. in the Ballroom. The voice of Shawn Paris has been described as a "vocal martini made of equal parts... Softness... Smoothness.... Special romantic twist!"

(Don't forget Sexy!) Everyone is welcome to attend and you can bring your friends.

(I am attending and bringing my spouse... or maybe not.)

The cost is only $5 for COS Senior members; $8 for all others. Refreshments will be served after the entertainment and is included in the modest price. There is also a raffle available. For further information or directions, you can phone COS Seniors president, BERNY RAFF at 407-767-6763 or the synagogue at 407-298-4650.

I received a phone call...

A lady contacted me about starting a new career as a singer and recording artist. She mentioned she was elderly so I advised her to become a singer in nursing homes and assisted living facilities where she could bring happiness to residents and I told her not to expect much (if any) compensation. What I should have done, was to direct her to contact RACHEL SHIPLEY who is now a life coach. She refers to herself as an EJM (experienced Jewish mother).

I love dogs...

(But you know that already!) Another gal who loves dogs as I do is our own GERRY ECKSTEIN. Actually, Gerry loves all animals, including her smart and wonderful cat named Lucky.

About six months ago, Gerry and Lucky lost a dear member of their family... a dog named Hank. He was bright and a devoted companion.

When Hank died, Gerry felt a tremendous hole in her heart, an emptiness that she thought she could never fill... but recently, she has found some joy in her life. The "bundle of joy" is her new dog, Mike, a one-year-old Chihuahua.

(The Chihuahua is the smallest breed of dog and is named for the state of Chihuahua in Mexico. The breed comes in a wide variety of sizes, head shapes, colors and coat lengths.)

Gerry Eckstein with dog, Mike.

As I mentioned, Mike is one-year-old, short-haired, black all over except for splashes of white. In fact, he has the same coloring and markings as Hank. He only weighed four pounds when Gerry first got him and now he is about double that! Before she met Mike, Gerry saw his photo and fell in love with him. (Who could blame her?)

I met Mike the other day at a "play date" with my dog, Chloe, and I fell in love with him too.

(A doggy play date? What do you expect? I can't have more kids after my three grown sons. My eggs have turned to powder by now!)

One for the road...

Lucy is walking the path around Lake Eola and meets her friend Naomi. Lucy is surprised to see that Naomi is walking a dog.

"What's with the dog? I've never seen you with a dog before. Is it new?"

Naomi replies, "Yes it is. I got this dog for my husband. I wish I could make a trade like that everyday."

(Of course, she was kidding!????????)


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