Tel Aviv Diary - November 24-28, 2012 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

Tel Aviv Diary - November 24, 2012 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

I have been looking for a story I translated by Dahn Ben Amotz, called "Buon Giorno Valentina," but I see now it was before computers and it will have to be looked up in the journal, "Libido," where I published it first. Even though I never got paid for it - I did it for fun with him - I think the mag had to pay enormous rights to publish it. Anyway it was about a time when he was helping refugees from the Holocaust to get to Israel, and in the evening wandered the streets of Rome. The story after that background gets juicy, as he follows a beckoning girl to her home and sleeps with her, only to discover in the morning that she is a he. He laughs and says "Buon Giorno Valentina." Now I happen to think this event and his reaction is a comment on the way things develop in the history of the Jewish State, that things do not turn out to be what they seem, and you have to live with and enjoy what there is. And since people lately have been cursing his pornography I want to reassure them that pornography is a social statement.

November 25, 2012

Still sick.

Here is the story: Buon Giorno Valentina

The Zionist of the earlier generations must have cringed at the thought that such an idealistic quest such as the saving of refugees of World War II could be marginalized by a alternative sexual romp in Rome, but when I was translating it with him I could think of no better way of thumbing my nose at the rigid historical and social conformism of contemporary Israeli society. To me this was not porno but protest. It was also a kind of literary protest in my mind - the mixing of high literary revelations with adolescent allusions.

November 27, 2012

Why can't I find anything about Yael Ram-Mitspon who woke up last week to find a terrorist with a knife in her house, her bedroom, where she was sleeping with two of her four children? I'm overwhelmed by her simple story of how she defended her family and actually scared him off but I can't find a link in the English papers.

November 28, 2012

It seems I couldn't find it because the only two places the incident is mentioned in English is not from the mother's point of view but the security point of view: in Haaretz or Naomi Ragen's Site which dramatically but somewhat inaccurately tells the story. The woman herself has been telling her story all over, not to flount her heroism but to explain the difference between her story and last year's family murder. She had only one assailant to contend with, she had only a knife to contend with.... The scars on her face still red from the surgeries, she minimizes not the danger but her own action.

She's a pretty fearless heroine and I can't understand why the entire world doesn't know about her.

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