The Diary

The t-shirts went down a bomb

April 17, 2014

When an unmarked, unidentified parcel arrived at the offices of Mitzvah Day recently, they knew what to do. The man who came from the CST examined the package and pronounced his verdict: call in the bomb squad. And so the JW3 centre, where Mitzvah Day is housed, had to be evacuated, the Finchley Road closed and the suspect item dealt with in a controlled explosion.

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Gearing up for Board presidential race

April 6, 2014

One candidate thrown up by the rumour mill for Board of Deputies president next year has scotched the suggestion. Milah UK co-chairman, and former United Synagogue president, Simon Hochhauser says he is too busy to consider the role.

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Mazel still tov for Towie mum

April 6, 2014

Some viewers have been wondering about Carol Wright, a regular on ITV reality show The Only Way is Essex.
Her necklace seems to spell the word mazel in Hebrew.

But the mother of TOWIE star turned TV presenter Mark Wright, will not be spring-cleaning for Pesach — she is not Jewish.

The necklace was given to her many moons ago by a then boyfriend.

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Baddiel's musical appeal

April 6, 2014

David Baddiel has turned to that traditional Jewish pastime, fundraising, to put his 2010 film The Infidel on stage.

He has co-written a musical version of the comedy, about a Muslim cabbie who discovers he was born Jewish, with composer Erran Baron Cohen, who did the music for brother Sacha’s films.

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It's all Hebrew to Tesco

March 23, 2014

Somebody made a matzah pudding out of this Pesach display at Tesco in Borehamwood - the Hebrew greeting Chag Pesach Sameach is back to front.

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Watts up with free energy?

March 23, 2014

British Gas are planning to introduce a new scheme to tempt customers — free electricity on Saturdays. Which will not be much help to observant Jews, for even with automatic timers for lights and electric urns, they are likely to use less electricity than on a weekday. But despair not: according to The Times, British Gas are considering a “free Sunday” alternative.

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Rapper in his natural habitat

March 23, 2014

Rappers do not usually spring from Golders Green with a business degree from Leeds.

But today marks the online release of the debut single of Dave In Charge, alias David Palmer, the JFS-educated grandson of veteran Liberal Democrat politician Lord Palmer of Childs Hill.

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Katherine Jenkins's Seder date

March 23, 2014

Welsh singer Katherine Jenkins, who performed at a fundraiser for Jewish Care’s Holocaust Survivors Centre on Monday, let her audience in on a secret.

“I’m not really one to talk about my personal life,” she said, “but I did want to share with you that over the past seven months I have been dating a lovely Jewish boy from New York.”

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The Board sees green

March 16, 2014

The Board of Deputies found a new meaning to the term “green screen” at its conference on leadership on Sunday, where presenters trying to use PowerPoint had to grapple with gremlins in the University College lecture hall. Eventually, the projection equipment was made to work, but only up to a point: the screen would display just a single colour — green. An eco-sign from above?

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James Bond's kosher sausage

March 16, 2014

Here’s a story about a Swiss alp, a salami and the world’s most famous secret agent.

A new exhibition on James Bond opened not so long ago at the Schilthorn, which featured in the sixth 007 film, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.

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