Strange but true

Meet Colonel Gadaffi's Jewish pen-pal

By Jennifer Lipman, October 31, 2011

A Jewish florist from New York has recalled his lengthy correspondence with his "pen-pal" Colonel Gaddafi.

Octogenarian Louis Schlamowitz has spent decades writing to a host of leaders and despots, from President Harry Truman to Iran's Ayatollah Khomeini.


Case closed: now I’m wearing my luggage

October 27, 2011

Next week El Al is cutting back on its luggage allowances, restricting economy passengers to 23kg and just one bag. So what is the answer to every Jewish traveller's eternal problem - how to arrive at your destination (particularly if you are flying to Israel) with as much as possible in your luggage, while simultaneously avoiding huge extra baggage charges?


He can't run for Euro Jewish Parliament — he’s dead

By Toby Axelrod, October 27, 2011

What's the hardest thing about starting a European Jewish parliament? Being taken seriously, if the European Jewish Union's experience is anything to go by.


'Racist' film Drives woman to court battle

By Jennifer Lipman, October 11, 2011

A disgruntled film fan is suing a cinema after the action film she booked tickets for turned out to contain "dehumanising racism" towards Jews.

Sarah Deming, from Michigan, bought tickets for Drive having viewed the film's trailer, which and seen publicity that suggested it was similar to the Fast and Furious franchise.


Students blow old shofar record away

By Jennifer Lipman, October 4, 2011

Canadian schoolchildren have broken the world record for shofar blowing.

Pupils at the Associated Hebrew Schools of Toronto gathered before Rosh Hashanah to blow 1,406 shofars simultaneously.

The feat is almost double that of a 2006 effort in Boston, when a paltry 796 rams' horns were tooted.


Shtreimel thief wrong-footed by name label

By Jennifer Lipman, September 20, 2011

A thief who walked off with a religious Jew's fur hat was caught - because the owner's name was written on the inside.

Shtreimels – large fur hats lined with velvet – have been worn by married Charedi men for centuries and can be worth up to £4,000.


How Rosh Hashanah influences the stock market

By Anna Sheinman, September 20, 2011

Researchers have discovered that Jews control the stock markets – for two days of every year.

A new study by academics at Nova Southeastern University in Florida shows that Rosh Hashanah has an impact on the stock market.


Jews removed from iTunes gospel and Christian section

By Anna Sheinman, September 19, 2011

The iTunes online store has responded to criticisms that Jewish songs were being listed as "Christian and Gospel" by changing the categorisation of the music in question.

The change followed a Jerusalem Post report on Sunday which complained that Apple's music player did not have a genre for Jewish and Yiddish music.


Terror alert over backgammon set on plane

By Jennifer Lipman, September 14, 2011

Israeli travellers sparked a security alert on an aeroplane this week – over a board game.

The US Airways flight between New York and Phoenix was diverted to St Louis on Tuesday. According to news site KSDK the three men were of Russian descent and spoke poor English.


Doctors meet Israel's first pregnant man

By Jennifer Lipman, September 13, 2011

Israeli doctors were astounded this week when a young male patient revealed that he was pregnant.

According to Ynet, the man had a sex change operation in the US and looks in every way like a man. However before his operation he opted not to have his reproductive organs removed.

The man, who is Israel's first ever transgender pregnant person, has two months until his delivery date.