Friday, January 07, 2005

First Post in a While

It's been a long time since I posted. The election push and a new job pretty much exhausted my blogging energies.

Anyway, enough personal stuff.

I'm writing this from Israel. Tel Aviv to be exact. For seven years this was my home and I like to think I know this country pretty well. It's been two-and-a-half years since my last visit and it's easy, in that time, to forget the details of life here.

Israel's a fascinating mix of secular and religious; rich and poor; third-world construction and world-class high tech companies; west and east; freedom and socialism.

It really is a miracle the place exists at all.

Life here is still tough, as much due to the daily fight to get what's yours in this competitive, crazy mediterranena society as to security and economic challenges.

If you want a taste of dealing with Israel, then read on as I present a little dialogue I like to call "Cold Soup".

COLD SOUP

Setting: A cafe in the heart of Tel Aviv. You order soup. The waiter brings it and sets it in front of you. You take a spoonful. It's cold.

YOU: Waiter, this soup is cold.

WAITER (From across the room): No it's not.

YOU: Yes it is! It's completely cold.

WAITER (Approaching): It's fine!

YOU: What are you talking about? This soup is stone cold. If you don't believe me, then taste it yourself.

WAITER (Tasting): You didn't eat it quick enough.

YOU: But you just brought it to me not a minute ago.
WAITER: No I didn't.
YOU: Yes you did! I saw you. You brought it right over and put it on the table.

A slight pause.

WAITER: It's not supposed to be hot.

YOU: This is chicken soup. Chicken soup is supposed to be hot! Look at this. All the fat's solidified and floating on the top.

WAITER (Looking): That's not fat. That's special seasonings from the middle east.

YOU (exhasberated): Look, just bring me a fresh bowl of hot soup.

WAITER (Shrugging): I can't. I don't work here.
THE END
It's this ability to deny reality that's the key to Israeli success in the face of insurmountable odds.

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February 7, 2006 at 3:11 AM  

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