Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Close Shave During the Three Weeks?

Yesterday, a few minutes before 2, I dropped a friend off on Washington St. in Jerusalem, and then headed to a meeting. Washington St. winds around the YMCA, where there is now a construction zone. As I drove on the narrow road – mine was the only car around – through the construction site, a tractor crossed my path and stopped. I squeezed behind the tractor. As I did so I thought to myself three things: "I hope he sees me, because if he goes into reverse, that's the end of the car" and "I hope that I am not p-ssing him off because he has to wait for me" and then "Hey, this is a public road, he probably expects cars."

Around five minutes later, when I was way out of the area, the same tractor went on a rampage smashing cars. (I assume that it was the same tractor because the map in Haaretz this morning had the tractor/bulldozer starting right at the place where I had squeezed by.) You can read about it here.

If you live in Jerusalem long enough, you have a "close shave" story. I have two; the last time was when I happened to get to the scene of a bus explosion before the ambulances, but after the police had blocked the street.

Well, I have no lessons to draw from this story, except, perhaps, that I should drive a bit more defensively. If the driver wanted to have backed into me, he could of.

(To my non-orthodox Jewish readers – the not-such-good-taste title of this post refers to the Jewish law of not shaving during the Three Weeks before the Ninth of Ab.)


therapydoc said...

but a little trim, just for business, no? okay, no.

Anonymous said...

A gangland shooting took place a block away from me in front of a restaurant I frequent and on a section of street I very frequently stroll in the evenings. Isn't Jerusalem, all in all, safer than most cities?
Or is it like here, safe if you are rich and white and very unsafe if you are poor and black (substitute Arab)

Anonymous said...

Doesn't your Zionism say that since 1948 you can shave on the three weeks-- or maybe not?
On Yom ha'atzmaut do you
a) not say hallel.
b) say hallel without the bracha.
c) say hallel with the bracha.

WWJD? (What would Judah{Magnes} do)

Jerry Haber said...

My Zionism is entirely divorced from my religion. Even when I was a liberal statist Zionist, I took care to say that I was NOT a religious Zionist.

On Yom ha-atzmaut, I daven the regular davening. I do not consider it a theological bad day (haredim) or good day (religious zionist.)

Having said that, I do shave during the Three Weeks on erev shabbat in Israel. Another compromise. In hutz la-aretz (actually, I dont remember the last time I was in hutz laaretz for the Three Weeks), I shave.