The Bulletin

1. Herman Wouk, a Man of Many Words
Who needs critics when loved by the masses? This week we say farewell to a man whose work will live on in hearts and libraries all over America.

The New York Times' obituary, "Herman Wouk, Best-Selling Novelist With a Realist's Touch, Dies at 103," gives us an exhaustive look at a life long and well lived. For a more personal, conversational piece on the prolific author and specifically his book Marjorie Morningstar, there is this piece in Jewish Boston.

On the question of his reputation, Mr. Wouk took a more philosophical approach. "In the long run justice is done," he told Writer's Digest in 1966. "In the short run geniuses, minor writers and mountebanks alike take their chance. Imaginative writing is a wonderful way of life, and no man who can live by it should ask for more."

2. Eurovision Losers

Madonna was so poor in her guest appearance on the Eurovision Song Contest stage on Saturday that the Starbucks coffee cup left on the Game of Thrones set is the only thing I can recall getting more laughs. How bad? Some of her songs were touched up for audio after the fact (yes, it can be done). The contest, the world's largest and arguably coolest singing competition, will of course survive that off-key performance.

The contest did however have some political moments (those are not allowed) when Madonna's dancer and Iceland's entry Hatari flashed Palestinian flags (on screen for a combined 17 seconds). Of course they were condemned by the European Broadcasting Union. Will they punish Iceland? Perhaps, but I honestly hope they don't because it is better to NOT give them any extra attention. As for the Material Girl, we have all suffered enough.

3. The Oxy Wing

You may not know the Sacklers, but their name is (for now at least) on buildings everywhere. Harvard, for example. Tel Aviv University, for another.   
You do know OxyContin, the prescription drug that regularly makes the news. When JTA offered insight on - "Who are the Sacklers, the family at the center of the opioid crisis?" - I was compelled to read. Disregard for the potential dangers of the drug and greed were evident as distribution to the public went on and on.
"The New Yorker, as well as other detailed articles on Purdue and the addiction crisis, has found evidence that the company engaged in a variety of misleading practices. Purdue allegedly misled doctors about the drug's addictive potential and recommended dosage, encouraging doctors to prescribe OxyContin when it was not needed."

Now America's 19th richest family with a combined net worth of $13 billion is scrambling to answer lawsuits from states and individuals. The many institutions around the world that benefited from the family's largesse are not in a great place either. Read Town & Country's "How Sackler Became the Most Toxic Name in Philanthropy" for more.
4. Rogenomics

My best Seth Rogen movie memory is the fact that I played a part in the advertising campaign (in Jewish media) for Guilt Trip where his mother was played by the one and only Babs. That said, good for him for doing well in his own world as this GQ cover story describes.

"I really always worked hard, because I recognized from a pretty young age it was one of the only things I could control," Rogen said. "I remember I did karate as a kid, at the Jewish Community Center, and when I started I was the worst in the class, I was the worst of 25 Jewish kids who were afraid of getting picked on. And then just because everyone else quit, three years later I was at the top of the class, and there were 25 Jewish kids who were worse than me. And that was always tangible: Just by not stopping I became the best one. It wasn't this, like, ferocious leap. I just kept going, and slowly [other] people stopped. Because a lot of people will stop."
5. Vibe of a Football Tribe
Julian Edelman, who signed for two more years with the Patriots, talks about Judaism in
The Vibe of the Tribe Podcast - Episode 72: Julian Edelman on Faith and Football. There's also Israeli food and what it was like having his beard shaved on TV.

Thursday, May 30, 7:30 PM
Boston Jewish Film Festival screening of
Brattle Theatre, Cambridge
Sunday, June 2, 3:00 PM
Boston Jewish Film Festival screening of
House of Blues, Boston

Sunday, June 2, 7:30 PM
Rabbi Bernard H. and Minna Ziskind Memorial Lecture
Speaker Francine Klagsbrun, author of more than a dozen books, including Lioness: Golda Meir and the Nation of Israel, The Fourth Commandment: Remember the Sabbath Day and Married People: Staying Together in the Age of Divorce. She was the editor of the best-selling Free to Be . . . You and Me and is a regular columnist for The Jewish Week and on the editorial board of Hadassah magazine. 
Monday, June 3, 7:00 PM
Jewish Federation of Greater New Bedford ANNUAL MEETING
All members welcome. Middle Eastern food provided.
Tifereth Israel Library
RSVP to office@jewishnewbedford.org of (508) 997-7471. 

Shabbat Shalom,


The Bulletin is a weekly email from Amir Cohen, executive director of the Jewish Federation of Greater New Bedford.  I welcome your feedback at amir@jewishnewbedford.org.

Jewish Federation of Greater New Bedford, 467 Hawthorn Street, Dartmouth, MA 02747
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