No Surprise There

In recent world news, a top European Union court has taken Hamas off the terrorist list.

As much as I love the romance and beauty of Europe, they’ve showed some really ugly and stupid sides lately.

Like taking off the terrorist list an organization who does not hide the fact that they have no problem with the destruction of Israel and her people. In fact, they are more than able and willing to do so.

What these fools fail to realize is that Israel, in taking the brunt of the terrorism, is saving the rest of the world from what has become commonplace to Israelis.  What they also fail to realize is that Israel is small potatoes to the Hamas and their ilk. If they could have their way and annihilate Israel, then the rest of the world is open for the taking.

Am I surprised? Not one bit. Especially that 70 years ago, many Europeans turned a blind eye to the death and destruction that was being rained on their Jewish neighbors.

What goes around comes around and what comes around, may end up biting them in the behind.


End Of An Era

To the locals of Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, the El Greco diner is not just a diner. It is a landmark and a part of the community.

It will soon be closed.

I grew up in Sheepshead Bay and have fond memories of eating in the El Greco diner. Every neighborhood has it’s own landmark, the place that generations have been going to. For the residents of Sheepshead Bay, one of those places is the El Greco diner.

It’s a diner. It serves the usual diner food. Burgers, sandwiches, salads, etc. But to go back to your favorite haunt, it’s like Cheers. Everyone knows your name. You know the menu, you know the waitstaff and you know that you will have a good meal.

But all good things must come to an end eventually. I just wish it didn’t have to be the El Greco diner.

Throwback Thursday-Can’t Hardly Wait (1998)

Ah, High School.

No matter how old we get or what we go through after high school, a part of who we were back then stays with us.

Can’t Hardly Wait (1998) takes places during one evening. The class of 1998 has gotten together for one last party. Amanda Beckett (Jennifer Love Hewitt) is the most popular girl in school. For the last few years, she has been dating Mike Dexter (Peter Facinelli). But she is starting to realize that maybe she does not want to be Mike’s girlfriend anymore. Preston Meyers (Ethan Embry) has had a crush on Amanda since 9th grade. He has kept a letter that he wrote to her and tries to tell her how he feels. William Lichter (Charlie Korsmo) has been tormented by Mike for years. Tonight is his opportunity to get back at Mike.

I like this movie. It has an end of an era feeling to it. The boundary between who we are when we graduate high school and who we are when we enter college is invisible, but palpable.  In a way, this movie is timeless because we all graduate high school and move on with our lives. But high school is still high school.

I recommend it and feel a little old.

Encountering Ellis Island Book Review

The United States of  America has been described as a melting pot. The familial origins of our citizens, past and present, can be traced every corner of the world.

Between 1892 and 1924, millions of immigrants left the world and the families they knew for America.

Ronald H Bayer’s new book, Encountering Ellis Island: How European Immigrants Entered America (How Things Worked) follows the paths of various immigrants as they immigrated to America, dealt with the process of going through Ellis Island and settling into their new lives.

This book can best be described as an academic book. It’s meant for history and/or genealogy enthusiasts or someone who just needs to do research for a school paper. It’s not completely dry, but I wouldn’t label this book as a gripping fictionalized account of an early 20th century immigrant to United States. What I did like was that the author also focused some of the spot light on Angel Island. Angel Island is the Ellis Island of the West Coast.  While European immigrants faced less subtle discrimination and a myriad of questions on the East Coast, the treatment that Chinese immigrants received was outright discrimination.

Do I recommend it? In an academic sense, yes. Otherwise, no.

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