Tel Aviv Diary October 25, 2005 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

Tel Aviv Diary - October 25, 2005 - Karen Alkalay-Gut

October 25, 2005

a beautiful hot day. and because of the holidays we don't work and just enjoy it.

We saw the old "Hebrew Hammer" movie - the jewish parody of superman, christmas, etc. movies with Adam Goldberg and Peter Coyote. It's naivete and simplicity got me thinking about Jewish identity and how impossible it is for me to consider jewish identity in the same way as it may be conceived of abroad. the icons, even the icons of humor, don't work for me at all. Even the concept of jewish guilt, which dominates this train of thought, is different - the concept of self in relation to others, to a community is so profound and complex here that the little jokes that characterize the stereotype of jews make no sense to me. MY LIFE IS GUILT.

And then we went to see "Live and Become" a French-Israeli film about an ethiopian boy brought to israel with the wave about 15 years ago. Directed by Radu Mihaileanu. With Yael Abecassis, Roschdy Zem, Moshe Agazal, Sirak M. Sabahat, Moshe Abeba. Even though it is a sentimental film, it is pretty amazing and a good story of the situation of the Ethiopian jews (and non jews) in Israel.

We walked out of the theater - Cinema City - and I realized there was not a single Ethiopian in sight. And then I realized I have not spoken to an Ethiopian in months. And I don't have a single friend who is Ethiopian. Because I never meet Ethiopians.

October 26, 2005

Yes, my life is limited, and I don't have ways of meeting people I don't work with. But it is strange that we keep talking about an integrated society...

Hadera. The market. The long holiday over, everyone is busy replenishing their household stores. Suddenly a noise, deafening, extended. Arms, legs flying. Death everywhere. The smell of explosives and blood.

It is a total surprise, even though we think about it all the time, spend vast amounts of money and energy on the prevention, worrying about the possibilities.

And at the same time there are websites where you can gamble on the where the next attack will be, how many will be killed, what kind of weapons.

As if it isn't real. here

October 26, 2005

The names of the victims are released today, just as they themselves have been released from life. Their photographs, however, are burned into my memory. An old man, shopping, and then dead. Did you know that when you die, your identity card number gets returned? You no longer have an identity? What rot I am spouting. Sorry. I just had a flu shot and no matter what they say, it does terrible things to me.

October 28, 2005

After we came back from a great morning of animated films with Zvika Oren, with one particular film made by pupils from Kalkilya and Raanana about a flying camel who brings peace to the middle east, Ezi suddenly said, "so how did the current intifada start?" Now Ezi is the guy who first told me that old line from kindergarten, "it all started when he hit me back," so the question was significant. And he began to calculate - the shooting at Gush Etz Zion stopped the uneasy ceasefire and began the series of retaliations we've been living through for the past month. In other words there was a clear and recognizable source. But it means that some guys with guns can determine the fate of millions of people.

But we k now what what we know from the papers and our experience. Take a look at Lisa's blog for REAL experiences.

The animation festival, by the way, took place in Beit Leyvik and had a film in Yiddish as well as films in other languages.

October 29, 2005

On our way to an exhibit of sculptures of Gideon Graetz at a gallery in Gordon.

The terrible explosions in Delhi reminded me - remind me - I don't expect to die of old age.

I have probably written this down here but maybe not, and maybe i am remembering it differently anyway. In a medical exam not too long ago, a doctor asked me about family history, noting that the cause of death of my ancestors is a good prediction of my own future. How did my relatives die, he asked. They mostly died of Hitler, I answered.

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