Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Reclaim Your Reputation Online

Luke Ford writes:

Friends of mine are obsessed about bad things — many of them true — said about them on the internet. This is totally understandable. Reading bad things about yourself, especially when true, feel like a knife ripping through your abdomen.

Though this is the natural reaction, it does not have to be your dominant reaction. The quicker you can learn to laugh about your felony conviction for drug dealing, for example, or diddling that secretary at the office while you were a married Orthodox rabbi, the quicker you can come to terms with your bad self, the quicker other people will come to terms with your bad self.

On the internet, nobody has to know you’re a dog. You can construct whatever identity you want.

Feminist Sexual Ethics

Luke Ford writes:

While Gail Labovitz is undeniably correct about the paucity of coverage of female homoerotic sexual activity in the Talmud, I have found through my diligent research many references to female homoerotic sexual activity in other forms of literature. For instance, I was first informed about female homoerotic sexual activity in the "Letters" section of Penthouse magazine.

This literature invariably portrayed female homoerotic sexual activity in a positive light, particularly when this female homoerotic sexual activity led to  male-female hetero-erotic sexual activity, the staple of the Penthouse genre and often captured in high quality color photos of the most stimulating kind.

Trying To Impress

Luke Ford writes:

I remember I was at a Friday night dinner and we all went around the table introducing ourselves. This chiropractor introduced himself as "Dr….". Physicians and PhDs at the table did not introduce themselves as "Dr…" I’d never heard anyone introduce themselves before at a dinner as "Dr…"

I love it when people try too hard. I hate it when I try to hard. It always fails with the ladies.

Posted by Mahara”t Sara Hurwitz:

I spent this past week at a Jewish retreat center where I encountered the difficulty of this challenge. At one point on the retreat I stepped into a Jewish renewal style Shabbat morning service, and found that there was very little traditional liturgy weaved into the davening.  This type of formless prayer did not appeal to me.

Dennis Prager High Maintenance?

Luke Ford writes:

On Dennis Prager’s radio show today, he devoted the male-female hour to a discussion of high maintenance people.

Dennis said he was not high maintenance.

Ralph calls from Manhattan: “Dennis, I would think it would be impossible for you to not be high maintenance because of what you do for a living. You’re seeking the approval of others.”

Dennis: “That’s not true. I don’t. I seek the respect of others and that’s a very big difference.”

Ralph: “I’m an actor and I know that I’m high maintenance.”

Dennis: “Well, actors do seek approval. You seek applause. I don’t. That is a big difference. It’s something I’ve thought through very carefully.”

One Nation Alone Takes Responsibility

Luke Ford writes:

In his 1998 lecture on Exodus 33, Dennis Prager says: Jewish history holds the Jews responsible for leaving their land. It’s the only history I know of where the people have taken 100% responsibility for their own misfortune.

The Holocaust is the first time Jews started to think they didn’t deserve what happened. Still, there are a few Jews who say the Holocaust is a punishment for failing to live up to God’s law.


I Did Nothing With Her Beautiful Hair

Luke Ford writes:

"You say love my hair," she said, "but you don’t do anything with it."

She was right. I loved long hair. It’s a woman’s glory. She had soft silky black hair and I had taken it for granted. I liked looking at it. I liked knowing it belonged to me. I felt proud of it. But I had done nothing with it. I had taken it for granted. I had gotten lost in all her other splendors.

I reached out and started running my fingers through her hair.

She looked up at me, all soft and trusting and wanting to be stroked.

"Daddy’s home," I purred.

I Want To Be Adopted!

Luke Ford writes:

I want to be adopted. Ever since I’ve been a kid, when I’ve met loving families, I’ve wanted them to adopt me. I still get this yearning. I’ve wanted some of my therapists to adopt me, or to at least to hold me very close. I wanted Dennis Prager to adopt me.

I’ve been sick the last nine days. It is during times of illness and during Sabbaths and during holidays that I most feel alone. I see most starkly that something is very wrong with my life.

If I were 24 or 34 and never married and blogging and living in a hovel, I could easily justify to myself that this next blog post would make the difference, that I was about to turn the corner, that I was about to achieve a good life, but now I am 44 and I can no longer live in this delusion. All I can do is look in the mirror and then look around me and realize I need to change. What I’m doing is not working.

When people don’t learn to connect normally to others in their first couple of years of life, they end up like me.