Archive for the ‘Just So You Know, Not Everyone Out There Is Jewish’ Category

DKNY Wants To Dress You For Ramadan

July 10, 2014

This piece first appeared in The Times of Israel.

Jewish designer Donna Karen's DKNY label has a special line for Ramadan. (DKNY Lookbook screenshot)

Jewish designer Donna Karen’s DKNY label has a special line for Ramadan. (DKNY Lookbook screenshot)

Muslim women may be fasting this month for Ramadan, but that doesn’t mean they can’t look good doing it. DKNY, the fashion label founded by Jewish designer Donna Karan, has a new Ramadan Summer 2014 line aimed mainly at Middle Eastern modest fashionistas.

However, following the European Court of Human Rights upholding of France’s ban on the burqa and niqab last week, observant Muslim women in that country might want to also check out these glam, yet body-covering, looks.

Yalda Golsharifi, the fashion editor at the Kuwaiti Styles Magazine, and Tamara Al Gabbani, a fashion designer in Dubai, styled this collection that “channels [a woman’s] inner silver-screen siren and make[s] a scene with sweeping silhouettes, bold and artful prints and stunning fabrics.”

Click here to read more.

© 2014 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.

NY Orthodox Rabbi’s Got His Congregation On The Rails

July 10, 2014

This article was first published in The Times of Israel.

Rabbi Berkowitz giving opening prayers at 2 Broadway (MTA headquarters in lower Manhattan) at the Veteran’s Day Memorial in 2011. (Photo credit: Metropolitan Transportation Authority/Patrick Cashin)

Rabbi Berkowitz giving opening prayers at 2 Broadway (MTA headquarters in lower Manhattan) at the Veteran’s Day Memorial in 2011. (Photo credit: Metropolitan Transportation Authority/Patrick Cashin)

Harry Berkowitz is a rabbi on the move. It could be no other way for the head chaplain for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, the largest transportation network in North America.

Berkowitz developed and oversees a program that ministers to upwards of 65,000 MTA employees working an over 5,000-square-mile area fanning out from New York City through Long Island, southeastern New York State and Connecticut. It’s not the job the Orthodox rabbi originally set out to do, but from his first subway ride-along with transit police in 1978, he knew he had found his true calling.

Three and a half decades later, Berkowitz, 67, is still chugging away, but no longer going it alone. Having steadily built up the MTA’s chaplaincy, he is now assisted by a team of 100 volunteer clergy of every religion and cultural background. They’re on call 24/7 to support the MTA family in coping with everything from run-of-the-mill personal and employment issues, to fatal train incidents (nearly 100 people died along the MTA’s 2,047 miles of tracks in 2013), to unfathomable national tragedies like 9/11.

Click here to read more.

© 2014 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.

 

‘Rabbi’ Tom Hanks Dances on Instagram

July 10, 2014

This post first appeared in The Times of Israel.

Justin Bieber captures Tom Hanks dressed 'as a rabbi' at Jewish manager's wedding July 7, 2014. (Instagram screenshot)

Justin Bieber captures Tom Hanks dressed ‘as a rabbi’ at Jewish manager’s wedding July 7, 2014. (Instagram screenshot)

Tom Hanks may have been wearing a bit of a costume, but it didn’t look like he was just acting at having fun at the recent wedding of Scooter Braun, Justin Bieber’s Jewish manager

In a video posted on Tuesday by the singer, the actor is seen joyfully dancing while wearing a yarmulke and tallit (Jewish prayer shawl). To be sure, the tallit looked like it could have been fashioned from a tablecloth, but that was beside the point.

What mattered was that Hanks was apparently fulfilling the mitzvah of entertaining the bride and groom by busting some Hasidic-inspired moves as he boogied along to Montell Jordan’s 1995 dance classic, “This Is How We Do It.”

Click here to read more.

© 2014 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.

 


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