Lchaim dec 2014 jan 2015 issue

Page 1



NEW YEAR pg. 22

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Baruch ata Adonai, Elohenu melech ha-olam asher kideshanu be-mitzvotav, ve-tzivanu le-hadlik ner shel Hanukah.


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Dec 2014/Jan 2015

Features 12 A Thousand Words Lacey Haegen, BEAUTE NOUVEAU

28 SHINE New Year, New You!


16 COVER STORY: A Gifted Season: La Jolla Playhouse

18 Salon Shalom Women in the Arts

20 She’s Got the Moves! Devra Gregory performs as Micael Jackson

22 Tastes of the New Year: Lights, Oil and Cruising for Donuts


On the hunt for the best in San Diego

24 It’s Kosher? Kosher wines that’ll blow your mind!

Headlines 32 News to Know Now Columns

6 Hello 8 What Jew Mean 9 My Comic Relief 10 Of the Book 26 The Blogette 31 Mazel & Mishagoss

PUBLISHERS Diane Benaroya & Laurie Miller

L’CHAIM SAN DIEGO, LLC (858) 776-0550 San Diego, CA 92127





CONTRIBUTORS Yigal Adato, Daniel Bortz, Jeffrey Cohan, Aimee Greenberg, Sofie Kinnefors, Stephanie Lewis, Rita Mailheau, Salomon Maya, Matt Miller, Sharon Rapoport, Nikki Salvo


SUBSCRIBE ONLINE: Copyright ©2014 L’Chaim San Diego LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and certain other noncommercial uses permitted by copyright law. For permission requests, write to the publisher, addressed “Attention: Permissions Coordinator” to: Published in San Diego, CA •

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to life. Art is Life


e’re sure that over the last few months you’ve come to realize that here at L’CHAIM, we are all about living life to the fullest and getting as much joy out of each day as possible. Which is why we’re also sure that you’ll understand why we’ve made the decision to combine December and January into one issue so that you can spend some time with your family, while we do the same with ours. (We’re welcoming a new member of the L’CHAIM family any day now, and we are so excited about it!) Even though we’re taking a small break, we decided to give you the best content we could. In this issue, we’re taking a look at the arts in San Diego, and all that makes seeing a live performance so wonderful. 6

Theater can make you smile, lift your spirits and leave you feeling elated. It’s given us great hope for the world and even inspired some of us to perform ourselves. (See pages 9 and 18; respectively, for more on our columnists experiences behind the curtain.) Great performances have the power to stir something inside of all of us, and we’re lucky to live in a place where there are so many great choices when it comes to entertainment. Just take a look at page 20 for one example of how transformative theater can be, and catch Devra Gregory when she performs as none other than the King of Pop himself at the Horton Grand in December (you heard us—a woman as Michael Jackson—why aren’t you getting up to buy tickets now?).


Also in this issue, and just in time for those holiday gatherings you’re sure to be attending, you’ll find a list of the latest and greatest kosher wines. Even if your hosts don’t keep kosher, we’re sure they’ll be impressed with anything other than the same-old, sticky sweet stand-by we’ve all had too many times before. And if they do, you just might impress their socks off with something they haven’t heard of or tried before. Finally, if you’re wishing for a new look as December 2014 turns to January 2015, you’ll just have to turn to page 28 to learn all about the latest trends in hair, makeup and fashion this time of year. You’ll be happy you did; our beauty experts are fantastic and local; so if you want more after reading, they aren’t too far away for a personal consultation. We think we’ve put together a great issue to round out our first year in business, and we hope that you’ll continue on this journey with us in the next year because we have a lot more up our sleeves. And don’t be sad with your time alone; whether it’s catching a show at the La Jolla Playhouse (see page 16 for more on that), cruising around town looking for the best donut spot (page 22) or even taking a moment to pamper yourself with the Beaute Nouveau Experience (check out page 12!), sometimes we all need a little more “me” time. So relax for a little bit, and we’ll see you in 2015! Try not to miss us too much; during the break, we’ll be working on the next installment of L’CHAIM, full of what you’ve come to expect from us: FUN!





jew mean Face Your Limits


can’t do it on my own. I’m not ready. These are my two limiting beliefs, and I have worked on figuring them out for many years now. Some time in my life these beliefs were instilled in my brain, and whenever I set out to do something new or work toward a goal I have in mind, they take a step forward and announce their presence. It could have been when I was younger, during high school, or even when I started my business. I have no idea exactly when they started to speak up, but they are there. We all have limiting beliefs but the trick is to identify them and to conquer them so that you can achieve your goals. No one is immune to these thoughts, and they can grow as time goes on if you let them. They are created in a moment when you don’t feel your best and sometimes others create them for you. Here are some common ones you may have thought about yourself:


I’m not good enough. I’m not smart enough. I could never accomplish that. I don’t have enough money. I’m not good looking enough. There is no way I can write an article (one I recently attributed to myself). The list can go on and on but that’s not the point of this article. The point is to learn how to push these thoughts aside and continue on your path. Push them aside is the key phrase. You see, limiting beliefs are actually there to protect you. They were created in a moment when there was some pain, and in order for you not to relive that moment, your “self” brings those out in similar situations. Your mind is screaming, “Hey bud, we have been down this road before and you felt like crap, let’s not do that again.” The key is to know that you can’t get rid of limiting thoughts but you can thank their wisdom and decide not to listen. Ask yourself


one question: “Is the outcome I want worth whatever will happen on the journey?” So many people hold back their dreams, goals and even their needs because of their limiting beliefs, but 90% of your success is in the starting. If you don’t start, you can’t ever get to the success at the end. That reminds me of a story I heard a while back. In many parts of the world elephants are used for labor, and when they are first brought to a labor camp they are tied to a heavy chain attached to a large peg in the ground. Throughout the day, they work carrying thousands of pounds of weight and at the end of the day, they end up tied back to that peg. The scary part is that as the elephant gets older, the peg and chain get smaller and the elephant with the thousand-pound lifting ability doesn’t try to escape. The elephant has been conditioned to stay and not venture out. Just like the elephant, we have been conditioned, but in order to reach our goals and dreams we must break the chains of our limiting beliefs. We can do this by creating and nurturing positive beliefs to counteract the negative ones. Imagine you accomplish that goal you have been wanting for so long. Feel the joy and the sense of accomplishment of finally finishing that project. Feel the sense of pride and the sense of success for finally doing what you have been holding yourself back from doing all this time. I challenge you to figure out your limiting beliefs and face them by taking a small step toward a goal you have been putting off. IF YOU ARE BRAVE ENOUGH, TWEET ME YOUR STEPS ALONG THIS JOURNEY @YIGALADATO USING #BREAKTHEBELIEF



comic relief A Life in the Arts


y first acting gig was for Junior Theatre (JT) in Balboa Park. I was horrendously shy as a kid, a mommy’s boy living in the shadow of my older brothers. JT gave me a voice, allowed me to express myself artistically and more importantly introduced me to something I had never noticed before: girls. The first play I auditioned for was the 1990 summer production of “Charlotte’s Web.” I was cast in the production, and my chubby cheeks had landed the lead. I was Wilbur, the pig. After seeing some old VHS evidence of my debut, I was pretty bad. I cringed every time I heard my pre-pubescent voice utter the words, “But Charlotte, I am a humble pig.” On the other hand, my parents were so proud. One, that I was talking; and two, that I was getting to know new people. They were so proud that my mom brought all my Jewish friends from school to watch me play Wilbur. I am still friends with all of

these guys, and I kid you not—they still call me Wilbur 24 years later. I got my first paying gig as an actor three years after Wilbur, for a role in the local teen show, “Kickin’ it with KPBS!” I was the youngest cast member, but I remember we would go to high schools and film interviews with teens about their issues. It was an honest living for a 13 year-old, making $10 an hour. And then came my personal dark ages, I left theatre and everything to pursue a life in science. I acted in a couple shows here and there but nothing too spectacular. Then, I moved to Los Angeles and tried out stand up comedy. Now that was scary. I truly felt fear the moment I had to make 40 people laugh on purpose. I failed miserably sometimes but stand up gave me an edge as a performer. After a couple of failed TV pilots (one including Ashton Kutcher’s production company) I returned home to San Diego. I

quickly partnered with one of my mentors, a theatre director originally from Mexico City named Pepe Stepensky. He took me under his wing and allowed me to explore a side of me I had never explored—writing. Last year, I wrote and acted in my first play, “Splitting Adam,” which Pepe directed. I played a loser kid who would use people for money including a crazy idea about charging men who lived in his grandmothers’ retirement home money to sleep with her. Yes, the original working title for this piece was “Pimping my Bubbe.” After that, I met another person who introduced me to the local theatre scene, Herbert Siguenza, and I joined his Latino theatre troupe, Amigos del Rep. After a couple understudy roles at the Rep I was cast in a collaboration by the Rep and the La Jolla Playhouse in the 2014 Without Walls production of El Henry, a modern adaptation of Shakespeare’s Henry IV, where I played a flamboyant Cuban cholo with magical powers. I’m still working with the rep as I write my second play, and I look at life as the cyclical muse it is. My family begged me to speak when I was a kid and now they beg me to shut up. Theatre changed my life; it made me a man. The arts allowed me to succeed and fail; that failure showed me that life isn’t too serious. Terrance Mann summed it up best when it comes to the arts, “Movies will make you famous; television will make you rich; but theatre will make you good.” SALOMON MAYA IS A LOCAL ACTOR AND PLAYWRIGHT. FOLLOW HIM ON TWITTER @SALOMAYA




of the

book Oil, Latkes & Donuts


hanukah celebrations are very much associated with oil. It’s customary dishes, sufganiyot (donuts) and latkes (potato pancakes), are both fried in oil. But why do we health conscious people encourage this yearly attack on our digestive systems? The simple reason given is that these oily foods help to commemorate the finding of one last jar of olive oil in the Holy Temple of Jerusalem, after the unlikely victory of the tiny Maccabee army over the Greek forces. Like every Jewish holiday custom, however, there’s a deeper meaning waiting to be uncovered. Unlike the events of Purim, where a decree was passed giving permission for the murder of the Jewish body, the persecution by the Greeks was a spiritual war on the Jewish soul and its beliefs. The Greeks valued an aesthetic beauty— the human body, the arts and music. Intellectually, they valued philosophy, including the great Socrates, Plato, Homer and Aristotle. In light of their ancestry, this focus on external beauty makes perfect sense. In the Book of Genesis, after the great flood, Noah blesses Shem (from whom Abraham descended, hence the term, Semites) with spiritual truth. He blesses his son Yefet (from whom Yavan, the ancestor of the Greek Empire descended) with beauty. 10

Noah’s wish, however, was that the beauty of Yefet “should be found in the tents of Shem.” Noah envisioned that true beauty could only be found within a spiritual, meaningful context. There are many who derive great inspiration and joy from the wisdom and insight found in the Talmud and the Torah’s ethical teachings, so what were the Greeks’ problem? They weren’t bothered by the Torah’s intellectual beauty, but by the fact that Jews treated that beauty as more than just another set of ideas. The Jewish people weren’t treating Torah and its Mitzvot as mere customs and tradition, but stemming from a Divine will. Their view was that there exists something that is beyond what the human intellect can reach on its own; a higher reality. Not an illogical belief that disregards logic, but rather a belief in that which transcends limited human logic. This the Greeks couldn’t tolerate. How does this relate to latkes and donuts? Jewish mysticism likens the essence of the Torah to oil. Just as oil pervades any substance it touches, so too the deepest truths of Torah wisdom pervade every fabric of our reality. Like a blueprint for the universe, every aspect of our lives and world can be found on some level in the wisdom of the Torah. And as oil rises to


the top of every substance, so too does the inner dimension of Torah always retain its distinct quality over other forms of wisdom. But to properly absorb oil and digest it, one must cook, combine or fry it together with something edible. This is analogous to the deepest wisdom inherent in the Torah, needing to come down in a tangible, intellectually edible way through the stories of our forefathers and practical laws and ethics. On its own, raw, divine spirituality would be too overwhelming and lofty for us to absorb. By “cooking” this supernal wisdom into teachings we can understand, we are then able to “digest” the lofty wisdom behind these words. Instead of the “oil” found in Torah causing a physical heartburn, this type of oil inspires a spiritual heartburn; an emotion of the heart aroused by the Torah’s ability to reveal our inner soul. May we take advantage of the Torah and its Mitzvot, revealing the essential connection we all have with G-d and our heritage. Through this, the beauty of Greece will truly be found in the tents of Shem, a beauty that reflects purpose and meaning. RABBI DANIEL BORTZ IS THE DIRECTOR OF JTEEN OF SAN DIEGO. EMAIL AT JYOUTHSD@GMAIL.COM OR VISIT JTEENSD.COM








ver the last 20 years, Lacey Haegen has worked in retail as a skin care expert, makeup artist, counter manager, department manager, and merchandiser for some of the biggest names in the industry. In that time, she has become an expert in cosmetics and skincare, having worked directly with cosmetics lines such as Chanel, Borghese, Prescriptives, Mac, Estee Lauder, Clinque Origins, Dior, YSL, Sisley, Ivo Pitanguy, Darphan, Shu Uemura, Bobbi Brown, Kate Somerville, Amore Pacific, Lancome, La Mer, Laura Mercier, and Natura Bisse, among others. Last year, she decided to quit her job in retail and pursue her own business as an independent makeup artist full-time. What she found when she went out on her own was that a lot of people had misconceptions about how to take care of their skin, how to wear makeup and how to feel confident while doing so. And, like any smart young woman, she decided to do something about that. Her line of skincare products, BEAUTE NOUVEAU, is a truly natural, artisan skin care line, hand-crafted in her own atelier. Made from the finest botanical ingredients, including plants, seeds and flowers; and completely free of unpronounceable ingredients and petro-chemicals, BEAUTE NOUVEAU will awaken your skin and keep it soft, youthful, and radiant for years to come. Additionally, Haegen realized that makeup helps some women feel their best. At her studio in South Park, she offers a variety of makeup application services and the BEAUTE NOUVEAU experience, a

one-hour indulgent pampering session that showcases the best of BEAUTE NOUVEAU (complimentary, with qualifying purchase). Here, we speak with Lacey about what brought her to create her own skincare line, her philosophy behind makeup and why people everywhere should pay attention to the ingredients in their products. LCHAIM MAGAZINE: WHY START YOUR OWN SKINCARE LINE? LACEY HAEGEN: I have always had a huge

sense of social responsibility and I think that we all deserve access to a truly natural skin care line that is not a figment of the marketing genius’ imaginations. I felt we all deserved something much better and healthier than what is being marketed to us. I also feel that we are the ones who should decide what “beauty” looks and feels like; it shouldn’t be crammed down our throats by magazine ads. I also believe in small business and women supporting women I believe in quality of life and that life is way bigger than lipstick and face cream and people are more important than products. I am passionate about BEAUTE NOUVEAU, challenging women to critically think about what we have been taught to believe about skin care and beauty, creating long-lasting relationships, and starting a very strong, grassroots new beauty movement. Each one of my products is created for real women and I respect each and every one of my clients immensely. I wanted to create a line of skin care that truly care for the clients first, before profit.


Experience is a product demonstration It is not a paid service in the traditional sense. It is called an “experience” rather than a “facial,” because its purpose is to customize the perfect skin care regimen for my clients, not book and sell a service. The best way to select the perfect regimen for my clients is to touch and feel their skin and work with them on a one on one basis. When my clients experience the products first-hand they are much more confident in their purchases. This is a 1-hour experience that showcases every single one of the facial products (and 2 body products) in a set sequence with a set technique and creates a luxurious, pampered buying experience for clients The BEAUTE NOUVEAU Beauty Experience is a complimentary gift with a $100 purchase, and clients leave with glowing, nourished skin.


which removes makeup and debris from the day. It is not enough to just “wash your face” at night anymore. With all of the dead skin that accumulates during the day, the makeup and sunscreen we put on, and the dirt, grime, pollution, toxins, and freeradicals that stick to our skin throughout the day, it is essential to first loosen dead skin, remove makeup & the “gunk” of the day with a cleansing oil. My cleansing oil is also really clean (free of chemical ingredients), WWW.LCHAIMMAGAZINE.COM



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too, so people can enjoy Lavender Crème, Mint Crème, Orange Crème, and Tres Leches scents as often as they like.

and is made of only liquefied coconut oil, camellia seed oil, rice bran oil, willow bark extract and green tea extract. The next step is washing your face, preferably with a gentle, detergent-free cleanser, and I make two types, based on customer preference. One of the products that I started my line with, and that I still really love today (it also makes a great gift!) is the Crème Rinse. Think of this as the moisturizer that you put on in the shower that will leave your skin feeling super soft all day. You use it right before getting out of the shower; the decadent whipped cream melts into warm skin like butter on a hot pancake and the hot running water rinses away just enough of the excess oil to leave your skin velvety soft. I’ve added new scents to the body line, 14

LCHAIM: THAT SOUNDS AMAZING! WHERE CAN I FIND IT? LH: Right now, I am selling my products

online and in a few smaller retail locations throughout San Diego. The best place to come and see BEAUTE NOUVEAU is at my studio in South Park, at 2225 30th Street, inside the Burlingame Garage, and next door to Salon on 30th. My website is always open at, and clients that want to try the BEAUTE NOUVEAU experience can email me at to set up an appointment. LCHAIM: FINALLY, WHAT ARE SOME TIPS YOU CAN GIVE US ABOUT SKINCARE IN GENERAL? LH: Well, there is a lot to know, but it doesn’t

have to be difficult to take care of your skin, and it shouldn’t be! Skin is thirsty


and it must be watered, so hydration is really important. Drink a lot of water, and use a moisturizer twice a day. If you aren’t good about remembering to drink water, my Flower Water quenches thirsty cells, delivers trace flower essences and essential trace minerals from the Great Salt Lake in one spritz. Masks are also a great way to give your skin what it needs in one powerful dose. Skin is like a sponge and it soaks up toxins everywhere it goes, so a deep cleaning mask that exfoliates is a key ingredient in your repertoire, as is a replenishing treatment. Of course, BEAUTE NOUVEAU makes both options for a quick fix or as a spa treatment at home. Most of all, beauty product don’t create “beauty.” True beauty comes from within, and caring for your precious skin is simply part of overall health care; the added benefit should be capture more compliments.

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A GIFTED SEASON La Jolla Playhouse in 2015-2016


eing privy to the highly anticipated announcement of the brand new show lineup for 2015/16 at the La Jolla Playhouse is as exciting as opening Chanukah presents on a year round basis. That’s because having a renowned and nationally regarded playhouse right in our backyard is truly a wondrous gift that keeps on giving as the adventure-filled season unfolds. Located on the UC San Diego campus, La Jolla Playhouse is made up of three significant performance spaces: the Mandell Weiss Theatre, the Mandell Weiss Forum Theatre, and the Joan and Irwin Jacobs Center. The latter is a state-of-the-art theatre complex, which features the Sheila and Hughes Potiker

16 16

Theatre. La Jolla Playhouse is led by Artistic Director Christopher Ashley and Managing Director Michael S. Rosenberg. Looking beyond the exterior aesthetics of the Playhouse entails learning just how highly respected this critically acclaimed 67 year-old institution actually is in the industry. Becky Biegelsen, the Playhouse’s Public Relations Director, supplied some impressive Broadway statistics: The theatre has had 25 productions move on to Broadway (Jersey Boys, The Who’s Tommy and How to Succeed in Business, just to name a few), earning a total of 35 Tony Awards cumulatively. Additionally in 1993, the Playhouse itself won a Tony Award for Outstanding Regional Theatre. Notably, 35


productions have also gone on to successful runs Off-Broadway and to regional theatres across the country, including the Kennedy Center, Chicago’s Goodman Theatre and the Humana Festival, as well as to international venues in London, Brussels, Rotterdam, and Moscow. Shirley Fishman is the Resident Dramaturg at The Playhouse so she’s intricately involved with research and development elements, as she works alongside producers, directors and the playwrights themselves from commission to production. She says that the brand new season will consist of five incredible shows, all world or west coast premiers. “It will be one of our most exciting, innovative seasons in my history of working at La Jolla Playhouse throughout the last 13 years,” Fishman says. This is in part due to the high caliber of artists the theater itself attracts, as well as the sheer diversity in terms of subject matter, genre, female components, directors, writers, composers, and lyricists. Indeed, the theme for the year has been deemed “adventure” and one can already sense the daring, actionpacked intoxication from the following lineup. The spring of 2015 will kick off the opening of the first production in this eclectic season, with a dramatic, intimate, and extremely poignant show entitled “Come From Away,” which will be directed by The Playhouse’s own Christopher Ashley. Audiences will be deeply impacted by this world-premiere, rock-infused musical based on the true story of actual events that transpired in Newfoundland during 9/11. The unsuspecting, isolated, small town of Gander was converted into a host community when 38 planes carrying thousands of disoriented people from all over the world were diverted there. The generous way the

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT townspeople opened up their hearts and lives, embracing passengers and pilots alike (despite culture clashes and language barriers) was truly an act of love. This captivating musical is sure to trigger a deeply visceral and thought-provoking reaction from all who view it, as each of us has our own personal remembrance and context from that fateful time in shared history. Another provocative offering during the 2015/2016 season is “Up Here,” which features a book, music and lyrics by the husband and wife composing team of Robert Lopez (“The Book of Mormon,” “Avenue Q”) and Kristen Anderson-Lopez (Disney World’s “Finding Nemo, the Musical”) who took home the Oscar for Best Song with their immediate hit, “Let It Go” from the film “Frozen.” “Up Here” boasts a widely appealing plot involving a shy, introverted 30-something male who finds he has chemistry with a rather gregarious woman, but his attempts at a real relationship are thwarted by the interior monologue of critical voices in his head. This edgy musical comedy ambitiously dares to portray, in living color, the universal circus of judgment, neurotic thoughts, and negative self-banter every one of us possesses. Audiences will empathize and relate to carrying such heavy emotional baggage whilst simultaneously stepping up to our place in the world, possibly even finding happiness. “Blueprints to Freedom: An Ode to Bayard Rustin,” by Michael Benjamin Washington (“Memphis,” “The Wiz”) and directed by The Cosby Show’s Phylicia Rashad was so extraordinarily popular in its workshop phase with DNA (more about DNA workshops below) that the powers-that-be decided to bring it to full scale production. A dramatic tale which is set during the daunting political and racial environment of the 1963 Civil Rights Movement, when Mayard Rustin, (an openly gay male) orchestrated an unprecedented march on Washington by the same colleagues that previously exiled him. This is a compelling portrayal of intricate and dynamic human existence at a significant crossroads, filled with conflict and passion that embodies both professional and spiritual redemption. Certain to be of special interest within our Jewish community will be the opening of “Indecent,” co-created by director Rebecca Taichman (Playhouse’s “Sleeping Beauty Wakes,” “Milk Like Sugar”) and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Paula Vogel (“How I Learned to Drive”) and yet another

world premiere show that’s set to music. This play gets its inspiration from the true events surrounding the controversial 1922 Broadway debut of Sholem Asch’s “God of Vengeance,” a work thought by many to be groundbreaking and influential, yet considered by others to be misrepresentative and defaming. Bursting at the seams with familiar songs from the era, this riveting production documents the results of a highly flammable piece of work, the artists who risked their careers and lives to perform it, and the evolving identity of the culturally rich community that inspired its creation. The Playhouse also announces “Healing Wars,” conceived, directed and choreographed by internationally famed choreographer Liz Lerman, who by all accounts is simply astonishing. This will be a sophisticated stage event that fully integrates all the senses through a combination of dance, storytelling and multimedia in an in-depth examination of how soldiers and healers cope with the physical and psychological wounds of war, particularly the American Civil War period. This potent and raw piece features a remarkable performance from a young Navy veteran and delves into how the United States can possibly recuperate from what seems like endless battles and adversity. “Developing new plays is in our DNA at the La Jolla Playhouse,” explains Fishman, and that’s exactly why an innovative program they’ve recently implemented is called, “The DNA New Work Series.” This is an intensely publicly embraced concept that consists of live readings and workshop productions showcasing plays in an early stage of development. A play doesn’t have to be finished, it just has to be promising. Literary director, Gabriel Greene confirms that about 500 scripts are submitted to The Playhouse each year so there are many to choose from. A standout feature of DNA is that there are always audience “talk-backs” after every reading, which means the public gets to participate in the actual shaping and development of the shows with their input. Often it’s the first time the words have ever been uttered and that magic moment when an audience has its first peek into the new world. The “Page to Stage” program had been enticing people to participate for more than a decade but when Christopher Ashley took over as Artistic Director in 2007, he added DNA and it’s flourishing in its third year now. This is a rare chance for theatre-lovers to be a part of a new work in its earliest stages and there is no cost to attend readings.

Still another unique experience at La Jolla Playhouse is a program that’s designed to move productions beyond the fixed parameters of the four walls of a traditional theatre space. The program is aptly named, “Without Walls” (WoW) and has received great notoriety for its experimental and avant-garde breaking of stage barriers while holding performances in such locations as The San Diego Botanical Gardens in Encinitas, Martini’s Above Fourth in Hillcrest, and even in the Playhouse’s own La Jolla parking lot. On tap for WoW’s 2015/16 production will be “Border Crossing.” Like its title implies, this site-specific show will immerse people in the experience of crossing the border illegally from Mexico into the United States, offering a vivid first-person experience, cutting through polarized political debates. The actors will squash stereotypes as they play a range of characters including coyotes, migrants, Border Patrol agents, landowners, prospective employers and more. La Jolla Playhouse’s website ( where extensive information on a myriad of other components are available, but here are some little known fascinating facts that you might enjoy. Did you know that the original cast doesn’t always stay intact when the show heads to Broadway? In fact, that is what happened to the lead actor who played Frankie Vali in the original “Jersey Boys;” previous committed engagements kept him from heading to the Big Apple. The Playhouse also works closely with the campus of UCSD so students in their second year within the MFA program are regularly cast in professional productions. And lastly, three well-known celebrities are the original founders of this magnificent theatre. Their names? None other than Gregory Peck, Dorothy McGuire and Mel Ferrer. This holiday season and throughout the coming year, it’s clearly evident that one of the nicest treats we can bestow on ourselves (as well as loved ones and friends) is the gift of being “present” at one or all of the La Jolla Playhouse’s fabulous productions coming to San Diego in 2015/1016. STEPHANIE D. LEWIS IS A SINGLE MOTHER OF SIX AND A REGULAR CONTRIBUTING WRITER FOR THE HUFFINGTON POST. SHE IS A HUMORIST AT ONCE UPON YOUR PRIME (THEQUOTEGAL.WORDPRESS.COM) AND HAS A PUBLISHED NOVEL CALLED “LULLABIES & ALIBIS.” SHE CAN BE REACHED AT THEQUOTEGAL@YAHOO.COM.






omen are doing it by themselves. (Theatre that is.) Since they first took the English stage in 1629, women have been nothing short of authentic at playing themselves. We’ve come a long way from Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, where young boys recycled the small cadre of great female roles in the Canon. It seems only fitting that teen boys would squeeze into corsets under britches to play strong women the likes of Viola or Rosalind, needing to hide their sex to win the hearts of their true love. In the same year that the Brits lifted the ban on women playing women, the Japanese banished women from the Kabuki stage. Thirteen years later, the Onnagata (female role) was completely stripped from the Kabuki repertory. But the all-male plays dealt with erotic homosexual themes and featured Wakashu (adolescent boy actors), which led back to an official ban and eventual return of both male and female roles, played only by males to this day. Flash forward four centuries. Crossdressing and sex changing are more prevalent than ever. Same sex marriage is legal in 32 out of 50 states. How then, is it possible that women represent only 24% of working theatre professionals? In an attempt to even the playing field, female thespians have struck out on their own with their own. In Los Angeles proper, there are five women’s theatre non-profits. The Los Angeles Women’s Shakespeare Company wrestled the Bard to the ground with the creation of a dynamic all-female ensemble. The Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival and The Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Project both produce plays and performances by and of interest to women. If “the play’s the thing,” than the obvious 18

solution is the development of more female playwrights. The chief complaint of Hollywood’s female A-listers is that male writers put words in their mouths that just don’t ring true. For 37 years, The Women’s Project Theater of New York has been nurturing American women directors, writers and producers throughout their careers. The ’70s, ’80s and ’90s gave us the great works of Marsha Norman, Tina Howe, Paula Vogel, Anna Deveare Smith and Irene Fornes. But close your eyes and try to think of five female playwrights currently working in professional mainstream theatre. Now close your eyes and try to think of famous Jewish women playwrights of the 20th century. (Here are two: Lillian Hellman and Wendy Wasserstein.) Enter: the Jewish Women’s Theatre based in Los Angeles. After the first incarnation of the company disbanded, artistic director Ronda Spivak signed on to “debunk the Jewish woman stereotype, to turn it on its head.” As a playwright, Spivak found theatres eager to develop the works of Latino or African American women, but little if any attention was given to Jewish women. To create a room of one’s own, the salon-style collective performs in homes, Jewish centers, synagogues and as of November, their own space, The Braid. JWT uses mostly professional female actors and directors, but solicits thematic writings from both amateur and seasoned women writers. The group aims to empower, not politicize. Pluralistic in its orientation, the focus is to represent universal themes inspired by varied points of view and affiliations. More than 80% of their selections are true stories. The company boasts a robust patronage, male and female, Jew and Gentile. Season 7 opens with something completely different! “He Said...She Said,” (Jan. 18th-Feb. 2nd)


Monica Piper performs in “Not That Jewish,” the newest play by the Jewish Women’s Theater group.

is a provocative show where both women and men take to the stage to share the words of sons and mothers, husbands and wives. Adapted for the stage by Spivak, the show explores pivotal moments such as first meetings, challenging times, or a mother and son reuniting after years of estrangement. Across town, the Jewish Women’s Repertory Company presents Sondheim’s “Into the Woods,” just before the holiday season release with Meryl Streep and Emily Blunt. JWRC is a women’s musical theatre troupe performed exclusively by and for women. Orthodox women who, following the laws of kol isha cannot sing in front of men, created the company. JWT, on the other hand chooses to amplify and mix the voice of the 21st century American Jewish woman-warts and all. AIMEE GREENBERG IS AN INTERNATIONALLY PRODUCED THEATRE ARTIST AND PUBLISHED AUTHOR. CONTACT HER AT TOPCAT7878@AOL.COM.




ow does one woman go from a gracious ballet dancer to a bold Michael Jackson impersonator? The answer, says Devra Gregory, lies in her own one woman show, “Woman In The Mirror, A Dancer’s Journey” which runs December 4-21 at the Horton Grand Theatre in San Diego. The show is a celebration of Gregory’s life story, her evolvement as a professional dancer and her journey to spirituality. Gregory grew up in a Jewish family in Chula Vista and attended the San Diego Hebrew Day School from the first through seventh grade. “When it was time for my Bat Mitzvah I wanted the Saturday morning service so I could read from the Torah and have an aliyah like the boys I had been in school with for seven years,” she says. “Because it was the early ’70s and we were in a very conservative synagogue, the Rabbi said ‘no.’ I became frustrated that I was not considered an equal. It felt too patriarchal and unbalanced so I went on a search for



something else.” Gregory studied Eastern religion, Buddhism and eventually Wicca; an earth based spirituality that honors nature and the feminine Divine. She felt connected to her spirit through nature and eventually became a Priestess. Today Gregory leads women’s ritual circles involving ceremony, singing and dancing; something that has never been far from her heart. Gregory began taking ballet lessons at age six; at age 13, she joined the San Diego Ballet Company. “I had a very chaotic home life with a lot of violence, so dance was my way of escaping that,” Gregory says. In her late teens, she traveled to New York to study dance and became a ballet teacher upon her return to San Diego. “Dancers often have other jobs to sustain them, but I have been very fortunate in getting work as a dancer or teacher,” said Gregory. After moving to San Francisco and dancing for the San Francisco Metropolitan Opera Ballet Company, Gregory received an opportunity to work as a jazz dancer and ultimately ended back in Southern


California. Throughout her career, she has also done modern dance, exotic dance, children’s shows, vaudeville shows, magic shows and even performed as a Las Vegas showgirl. But taking on Michael Jackson was a huge challenge for Gregory. She was actually unfamiliar with his unique dance moves before deciding to play the iconic musician. She chose not to hire a dance instructor and instead watched as many videos of the King of Pop as she possibly could to learn how to move like him. “I took on the role as a professional choice and challenge,” Gregory says. “Then, when I began to study his work I became a huge fan, with mad respect. Michael Jackson held enormous amounts of energy in his body; like a massive generator. He could just stand on stage without moving and one could feel him.” To many a surprise; Gregory has not hired a makeup artist to help her transform into the iconic singer/dancer. Instead, she does the makeup for when she performs as the “Man in the Mirror” herself. The job takes her an hour and a half, and as anyone who has seen her show can attest to, she does a fine job. Gregory first produced her Michael Jackson show in 2012. She snagged a Bravo SD Award for that show, and has performed it several times since then. With the latest run of her show, she hopes to inspire people to think outside of the box. “I hope to inspire the audience to step into their own power and truth and not feel obligated to live a life that is expected of them.” TO LEARN MORE ABOUT DEVRA GREGORY, VISIT DEVASMJ.COM. TO PURCHASE TICKETS TO HER SHOW, “WOMAN IN THE MIRROR,” VISIT WOMANINTHEMIRROR.BPT.ME.

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O Lights, Oil and Cruising for Donuts THE BEST DONUTS IN SAN DIEGO 22


ne of the best-loved foods of Chanukah, Sufganiyot, is the king of donuts, and San Diego is home to some great options during the holidays and year-round. A Sufganiyot [plural: SOOFgone-ee-AH] is a jelly filled donut sprinkled with sugar. The first known recipe for the Jelly donut—Gefüllte Krapfen— appears in 1485 in a German cookbook, Kuchenmeisterei or Mastery of the Kitchen. Bakers today fill their donuts with sweet jelly and crème mixtures. But, because sugar was costly and rare, early pioneers filled theirs with savory stick-to-your-ribs fillings. They used mushrooms, meat, fish, and


cheese to concoct something comparable to a pot pie, ravioli or a calzone—only fried. These “donuts” grew in popularity, and the cold climate certainly didn’t hurt. From the early 1800s, jelly donuts were known as Berliners. Later terms like Bismarck, Paczki, and simply Krapfen became popular. Polish Jews fried them in chicken fat instead of lard or oil. By the end of the nineteenth century, the jelly donut became a favorite Polish Chanukah dessert. Another name still used by Australian Jews today is Ponchik. The name “Sufganiyot” comes from the term for “spongy dough” mentioned in the Talmud. In 1920, the Israeli Federation named the Sufganiyot a Chanukah dessert because of the degree of difficulty in making them promoted the creation of jobs.



No guide to donuts for Chanukah would be complete without the presence of at least one Jewish Deli on the list, which is where our journey begins:

D. Z. AKINS—SDSU COLLEGE AREA (619) 265-0218

This New York-style delicatessen, restaurant and bakery has been going strong for 34 years. Considered by some to be the best Jewish deli in San Diego, D. Z. Akins offers Sufganiyot during Chanukah. They also offer tasty latkes and a full Chanukah dinner menu—great for moms who want a break from cooking to enjoy time with to visit with family. Lots of places offer donuts, not many tailor their menu to this wonderful Jewish celebration.

MARY’S DONUTS—SANTEE (619) 448-4800

Open 24/7, Mary’s has been a Santee institution for 26 years. San Diegans from all over the county swear by Mary’s Donuts. One YELP enthusiast admitted to plying coercion with coworkers to pick up fluffy treats on their way into the office. “The only thing I could think about was how many times I needed to work out before I could come back to try other flavors guilt free,” said Darren from


Donut Bar made it onto the USA Today

10 Best Donut Shops in the USA list. They also made it to number 84 on Grubstreet’s 101 Amazing Doughnut Shops Around America. This is not your average donut shop. The Donut Bar changes their menu daily, and their offerings are so unexpectedly good: raspberry pistachio, crème brûlée, chocolate peanut butter cup, maple bacon (oops! sorry kosher eaters) and strawberry split. Donuts aren’t just for breakfast here—they’re also for dessert. But you better buy them early because the Donut Bar closes once they sell out— usually by 1 p.m. Caution: don’t try to call. They’re not good about checking voicemail messages. You’re much better off emailing.


“VG” stands for very good, and they are what they say they are. VG has been around for 45 years. They’re winners of the 4th Annual “Taste of Cardiff,” San Diego Magazine Readers Poll for Best Donut in San Diego, and two-time runner up for’s, A-List for Best Bakery. They offer classic donut fare but their quality and service gets them onto San Diego top lists all the time.


Flavors change here every day. Donut Panic is a family business. Linda, the vegan donut chef, and her father, offer delectable treats for vegan and non-vegan eaters alike. Their vegan donuts are available Wednesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays. Donut flavors include: Earl grey, chocolate espresso almond, maple “bacon,” and something citrus-y! They have rose-cardamom in honor of their Persian roots. But Donut Panic is all American. They offer a Beer and Donuts Happy Hour the last Saturday of every month at The Hideout on El Cajon Boulevard. They also work closely with Dr. Bill Sysak from Stone Brewery & Bistro, and the beer-crafting program at SDSU. In case you were wondering, the name Donut Panic is actually an idea from one of Linda’s friends.

TIGER! TIGER!—EL CAJON BLVD. (619) 487-0401.

Executive Chef Sharon Wilson competed on the Donut Showdown. Tiger!Tiger! offers House-Made Donuts including their specialty, the Coconut-Glazed. And don’t laugh, they’re also into pairing donuts with

an assortment of craft beers. They even have Donuts & Beer as a distinct item on their menu. The beer-donut pairing should not come as a surprise to many L’Chaim readers, as some of the old country Sufganiyot recipes contain beer.

AZUCAR—OCEAN BEACH (619) 523-2020

Azucar is the fulfillment of a life-long dream for Le Cordon Bleu chef Vivian HernandezJackson. She offers a donut muffin, and combines her culinary skills with the fresh ingredients she came to love growing up in the Cuban culture of Miami. This shop made it onto the list because of the quality of her offerings—not just because of their donut muffins.


Peterson’s is a family-run business with a friendly atmosphere. In 1981, Ralph and Vera Peterson came to San Diego County to have a look around. They were visiting relatives in the area and couldn’t get over the great weather. No strangers to the food business, since they owned a deli back in Croton-on-Hudson in New York called the Rockland Deli, they decided to set up shop here. They had five children. Ralph Peterson, the current owner, is their eldest. His niece also helps. Their big sellers are the simple Glazed Donut and Peterson’s Pillows—a croissant-donut hybrid. They sell out as soon as they put them in the in the case. Before we say farewell, I’d like to propose one final thought. Perhaps the Sufganiyot has such a rich history because Chanukah is a time for family. It’s a time when people sit around the table, look into each other’s eyes, share songs, give presents, and share hearts. Our history is about us doing things together. The older generation passes wonderful things along to the next. It’s a tradition of love. And, in San Diego all of this can be done outside on the patio because the weather’s so nice. RITA MAILHEAU IS A BUSINESS WRITER SPECIALIZING WEBHOSTING, CYBER SECURITY AND DIGITAL MARKETING. SHE LOVES TO EAT, FIX BIKES WITH HER HUSBAND MICHAEL, AND READ HISTORICAL FICTION. YOU CAN VISIT HER WEBSITE AT RITAMAILHEAU.COM. WWW.LCHAIMMAGAZINE.COM



KOSHER WINES that will


t’s that time of year again, when gifts are given, corks are pulled, and cheer is had by most while we’re all having a certain corporate holiday spirit shoved down our throats regardless of our beliefs. That being said, we can all agree that the days are cooling and nights are creeping up quickly, and more than any other time of year a good bottle of wine in both price and quality should always be at arms reach; even if it’s Kosher. If you’re anything like me, the very mention of Kosher wine probably brings up horrid memories of Manischewitz, right? That sweet, sticky stuff your parents drank that would probably be better poured over pancakes than into a wine glass. Imagine putting grape jelly in the microwave, then pouring the melted results into stemware.


But for a long time, that was all there was on the Kosher wine front because Kosher wine isn’t easy to make. In order for a wine to be Kosher, the grapes can only be handled by Sabbathobservant Jews, in a rabbinically certified winemaking facility under the supervision of a rabbi to be sure the wine complies with all kosher laws. And in order for the wine to remain kosher, it has to be uncorked and served by an observant Jew, because the handling of an open bottle by a non-Jew causes the wine to no longer be kosher, unless it’s gone through a process called mevushal. Mevushal wine is wine that’s additionally been pasteurized, or heated to 185 degrees farenheit. Previously pasteurization, or heating a wine, was a sure-fire way to ruin


good bottle. But with new methods of flashpasteurization, all that’s changed. In this list you’ll find a collection of kosher wines from all over the world—in red and white and sparkling—that don’t need to be limited to religious holidays. If fact, if you didn’t already know they were kosher, you’d probably never know it by drinking them. Look for them wherever kosher wines are sold.


100% cabernet sauvignon grown on three acres outside of St. Helena in the Napa Valley, the wine is dark and opaque with rich color that stains the inside of the glass. Old world


in style, the wine has notes of black cherry, charred forest, black fruits and coconut on the nose. On the palate the signature peach fuzz tannins of 2010 offer a soft grip that intermingles with notes of lavender, cassis and currant, a touch of dried leafy brush and super dark chocolate. The finish lingers offering notes of blackberry and licorice. Perfect pairing for slow roasted brisket or filet mignon. 2010 CHATEAU LA COLONNE LALANDE DE POMEROL, BORDEAUX $29.99 NON-MEVUSHAL Dark ruby and opaque with notes of black cherry, eucalyptus, pencil led, forest, rock and earthy mushroom notes combined with soil and smoky char. On the palate the wine is soft with sprinkled tannins, and alive with bright tart cherries, a touch of coriander, bitter dark chocolate and mineral. There’s a long finish that resonates with notes of mission fig and brambly dark fruit. Perfect for all red meats or, thanks to its softer tannins, roasted chicken. 2010 CHATEAU LE VIEUX CHANTRE PUISSEGUIN SAINT EMILION, BORDEAUX $29.99 NON-MEVUSHAL Dark ruby red in color with notes of cherries, sandalwood, and mushroom on the nose. Red and black fruits on the palate with berries and black plum skin on top of dust and mineral. A very soft mouth feel similar to some of the 2010’s of Napa with a supple tannin – not too gripping, but with enough structure to stand up to beef. A short finish, but not lacking in baking spices and pepper. Will pair well with all red meats, especially roasted game. 2013 TERRA VEGA CABERNET SAUVIGNON BIN # 945 CHILE $9.99 NON-MEVUSHAL

It’s bad manners to show up to a holiday dinner empty handed, and often times the inclination is to bring a bottle of wine. But let’s face it, showing up with a bottle of Golen or Yarden to a holiday dinner is no different than handing your host a bottle of two-buck-chuck. Terra Vega cab, on the

other hand, is perfect when you don’t have $30, or $40 bucks to spend. The notes of red fruits, cherry cola, and tart raspberry on the nose are rich and full. On the palate the wine is medium bodied with soft tannins and cedar notes filled with spicy pepper and an even layering of red currant. The finish is relatively short, but this is more of a table wine that’s versatile enough to go with chicken as well as red meat. The complexity it may lack is made up for by the fact that it’s very much the little black dress of wine — it’ll go with just about anything. 2012 TERRENAL CABERNET SAUVIGNON YECLA, SPAIN $3.99 NON-MEVUSHAL At $3.99, Trader Joe’s does it again. Not too much on the nose, but if you’re keen you can pick up aromas of dusty wood, black currant, chocolate covered cordials and a hint cola. On the palate, the wine has a pop of flavor that ranges from red fruit to dark baking spices. While medium bodied and relatively mild on the tannins, the dusty sensation on the palate lends the wine enough structure to stand up to BBQ chicken, brisket, or even lamb.

WHITES 2013 CANTINA GABRIELE PINOT GRIGIO ITALY $9.99 MEVUSHAL Light pale yellow veering into a hew of green, this crisp white has a nose of white flowers and citrus zest. On the plate it’s fresh and clean with notes of stony mineral and lime rind leaving a clean and quenched sensation. A perfect pairing for Gefilte Fish, green apples and honey, roasted green vegetables. 2013 O’DWYERS CREEK SAUVIGNON BLANC MARLBOROUGH, NZ $14.99 MEVUSHAL Grassy and green on the nose with hints of tomato leaf, gooseberry and lemon. The palate is crisp and bright with delicate grapefruit and mineral flavors intermingling with fresh lime. There is a bit of acidity on the top of the palate, but

it rounds slightly on the sides making this wine refreshing and quenching as a premeal glass, but it will pair best with crisp mixed greens and fresh seafood. 2012 HAI ELY RIESLING (DRY) JUDEAN HILLS, ISRAEL $13.99 NON-MEVUSHAL Rich with aromas of lychee fruit, yellow wild flowers, citrus blossom and honey baked golden apples on the nose. On the palate the wine is surprisingly round with notes of lemon water, green Jello, a touch of white peppery spice and a certain nuttiness lingering towards the finish. Perfect with fresh fruits or bitter mixed greens. Also, since the Hai Riesling is dry but without overt mineral notes, it would also be a nice pairing for a traditional honey cake.

SPARKLING 2013 NOTTE ITALIANA PROSECCO ITALY $14.99 MEVUSHAL One of the things you look for with any sparkling is the bubble, it’s the reason one drinks from a tulip shaped glass. While the bell of a regular wine glass is better for trapping the aromas, the first thing you’re looking for is the size of the bubble, and the small the better. In the case of the Notte Prosecco, a surprisingly beautiful steady confetti-like spring of tiny bubbles erupt from the bottom of the glass creating a fine white line in the center of otherwise golden glimmer of the wine. On the nose there are notes both of white and pink flower petals, star fruit, fresh casaba melon and a hint of lemon ice. On the palate the bright tingle of the bubbles helps to perk up your senses with soft chalky mineral, wild flowers, melon rind, and a zip of white pepper. Drink with a chilled green salad, crisp apples dipped in honey, or new fruit of the season. (You’ll know this wine by the cobalt blue bottle.) MATT MILLER IS A FREELANCE WRITER AND WINE SPECIALIST LIVING IN LOS ANGELES. EMAIL HIM AT MATTMILLERMILLERMATT@GMAIL.COM. THIS ARTICLE ORIGINALLY APPEARED IN LA WEEKLY (LAWEEKLY.COM). WWW.LCHAIMMAGAZINE.COM




blogette The Major & the Minor


n the early ’70s, I came to appreciate folk singer Don Mclean, and my oldest sister had the 8-track recording of “American Pie.” Long before I understood what the majority of the lyrics meant or what their cultural relevance was, I loved the songs. The last offering is “Babylon.” Taking lyrics from Psalm 137:1, this version is a haunting and beautiful final echo of the times, tying together the entire album’s theme of loss: By the waters of Babylon We lay down and wept for thee, Zion. We remember thee, Zion. In a live recording, Mclean gave a cursory and universal explanation to the lyrics, saying that even though this is a somewhat sad song, at the end, there is a glimmer of hope. That is a through-line to so many Jewish events and customs. When a groom smashes the glass at the end of a wedding and all assembled yell out, “Mazel Tov!” this commemorates the fall of Jerusalem, the destruction of the Temple some 2,000 years ago. Something major to be remembered indeed. We may be rejoicing in the reuniting of the two souls standing together under the chuppah, but we take a moment to reflect on what happened before they got there. We may move on, but we will never forget. No minor feat. Each January, we celebrate the Fast of Tevet, which this year will land on the secular New Year’s Day. So, you may whoop it up with champagne and caviar at the stroke of midnight: but come the dawn, you need to start your fast. But why? Here’s a brief history: Nebuchadnezzer, an Emperor, 26

gave the order to destroy Solomon’s Temple and exile the Jews to Babylonia. (Apparently we had this coming, as we had been letting the team down and not following the rules for quite some time.) The Jews grieved over being thrown out of their home and for the loss of their Holy Place. Not only did they weep, they refused to sing about Jerusalem when taunted by their oppressors. They were in exile physically and emotionally. In spite of all this, however, G-d, in his infinite compassion, forgave us and kept his covenant with us. We lucked out again. Technically speaking, this is considered a “minor” fast, as opposed to the “major” fast that we do for Yom Kippur. It doesn’t seem fitting, though, if you look at what a major event this actually was. It should have more heft, observance-wise. But, no. It’s a veritable footnote on the list of holidays to most people. Destruction and rebuilding seem like an endless cycle for our people. Even within the narrower scope of our day-to-day lives, there are probably countless examples of instances when we have had to start over; the loss of a loved one through death or the termination of a significant relationship, the loss of employment, the loss of a dwelling. Minor events in the scheme of mankind’s history, but they come with major


personal consequences. Even if we feel the destruction was not of our making, we are still compelled to complete the rebuilding if we are to survive. We’re not alone in these struggles and these tests are nothing new. Job. Noah. Moses. Sarah. Naomi. Ruth. All faced devastating losses or dealt with unfulfilled lives. All were in an undeniable position to move on, spiritually or geographically – or both. These chronicles are motivational reminders that you can rise from the rubble or the ashes and create a new life – and be made more powerful for having lived through what seem like insurmountable odds. Major hurdles. Minor miracles. DONNA SALZMAN MICHELSON IS A DYED-IN-THE-WOOL NICE JEWISH GIRL FROM NEW JERSEY. A 30-YEAR SAN DIEGO RESIDENT, SHE LIVES WITH HER HUSBAND AND IS THE EVER-KVELLING MOTHER OF TWO GROWN SONS. EMAIL HER AT DAHNUHEM104@GMAIL.COM.




SHINE! Trying on new trends, products and colors can bring about a deeper transformation within ourselves: a will to evolve and change!



ife can take the luster away from us. It’s easy to get covered with layers of inertia (I´ve been wearing my hair in a ponytail for three years, and my toddler loves it), or even worse, with cynicism (Well, it´s inner beauty that counts, isn´t it?). It´s not just that some of us, in the midst of motherhood and work, let our looks, health and well-being take the backseat in life. It´s as if throughout the year we let all the frustrations, the busyness and the rush, blur our spirit and our will to do things differently, or just to try. But then comes December, and we remember: Chanukah, the simcha of lights! And why shouldn´t you shine? We´ve “done” our spiritual New Year in September, let this secular New Year be an excuse to renew the façade! Go to the mall, try on the reds and pinks that inhabit the shop windows this season. Take a chance on new lipstick, explore a never-before fashion trend. It sounds shallow, it sounds trite. But a hairstyle can really change your life. So go ahead, shake of the cobwebs, renew, and recharge: Shine bright! Here are some trends and tips from our L´Chaim beauty experts, for you to try:



Davida Lampkin Tydings, cosmetologist and make-up artist to the stars, has an empowering message for women: Embrace your God-given looks! Learn to work with them, enhance them, make them your best feature. In other words: love yourself! Kosher Kurls products are well known because of their clever name and hilarious instruction labels. But their benefits go far beyond the novelty factor. The products are sulfate and chazerai free: They define curls, fight frizz and nurture hair. “I like my Latkes crispy, but I like my hair soft! Kosher Kurls is soft to the touch while still doing its job,” Davida says. “And besides, there are already enough pollutants in the air. You don’t need anymore dreck in your hair!” Davida´s perfect hair care and styling technique for curly haired women, using the Kosher Kurls Trifecta: First, wash 28






your hair with Kosher Kurls sulfate free shampoo. Then use Kosher Kurls deep everyday conditioner. Rinse those out and then towel dry, keeping hair still damp. Put in a bisel (small amount) of Kosher Kurls leave-in schmear (hair conditioner). Wait for it to dry. Then turn your head over and shake-shake-shake and fluff-fluff-fluff! Voila! A perfect head of Kurls. What makes Kosher Kurls, well, kosher? Davida has said that the statement is not to be taken literally, as good humor is part of her success: “Kosher Kurls will work better in your hair then in your stomach,” she explains. “Kosher means clean and our products are proudly made in the USA for the last 34 years More tips from Davida: You should not wash your hair every day, so the days that you don’t wash your hair, take a spritzer and fill it with water and some Kosher Kurls. Shake it up and then spritz your hair and it will reactivate the product, making your hair look Kurlicious again! You don’t have to be Jewish to love Kosher Kurls. Kosher Kurls is suitable for men, women, children, schetils, peyot, anybody and everybody; even your loving pets. Even people without curls. About the transformative power of beauty, Davida says: “When you look good you feel good! No doubt about it. When you love yourself and love your look, everyone will love you too! That’s why us Kurlfriends love each other! It can be fun to make yourself look as Kurlicious as possible!“

The term oversized does not refer to a specific piece of clothing, but to the size and width of the clothing, so it can apply to blouses, pants, maxi bags, bold sweaters and accessories. This look makes it seem like you´ve selected clothing items two sizes too big. If, like all San Diegans, you´ve been waiting for a chance to wear sweaters and coats after what seemed like an eternal summer, this is your chance to go big and comfy. Extra long coats that almost graze the floor and long, enveloping print sweaters are all the rage. And no, these are not just for tall women. Remember the inertia we were talking about? Go ahead and put on some high heels! Using loose clothes does not mean ditching femininity or hiding the figure. The trick is balance: a loose blouse with cigarette pants or a more fitted skirt; boyfriend jeans with a form fitting blouse. Trust us, try it! You’ll be happy you did.

cleanser. Clinique and Clarisonic both make fantastic models.


Too many hours at the beach this summer? A few too many cocktails over the holiday season? Sun exposure, lack of sleep, stress, and alcohol consumption can all take a toll on skin, causing it to appear dull and in some cases, hyperpigmentation (or brown spots) can develop. One way to get that inner light to shine through is to exfoliate. There are many different ways to basically slough off the dead skin hanging around on the surface, from using a basic daily toner to a full-on peel. A gentle scrub is an easy product most people can use in the shower each morning. The gritty texture feels refreshing as it polishes away those dead skin cells, and right away skin feels smoother. After cleansing, toners are effective at sweeping away any remaining dulling flakes.


Step up the routine with a serum. Serums are powerhouses whose ingredients are concentrated to give a burst of benefits, and their results are usually seen within the first few weeks of use. Chock-full of proven anti-agers like peptides, retinol, and antioxidants like vitamins A and C, serums are the easiest way to get your skin on the fast track to a healthy glow. Most serums


The new year is all about beginnings, renewal, resolutions. Lofty ambitions, like, I am going to work out more, or I am going to save money, may seem daunting when January first rolls around, but there are a few simple things a girl can do to get her glow on, little or no commitment required. Great skin is the ultimate foundation for looking and feeling beautiful. Investing in a sonic cleansing brush can transform skin in as little as 60 seconds a day. Texture will be renewed, and topical products can sink in better after a deep cleansing with a brush along with a skin type-appropriate WWW.LCHAIMMAGAZINE.COM




offer specific benefits, so look for a product with these ingredients, that use buzzwords like “brightening” or “radiance” in the name or on packaging. For a seriously luxe experience, Estee Lauder’s Ultimate Diamond Sculpting/Refinishing Dual Infusion, containing rare Black Diamond Truffle, promises a more refined and luminous look. For best results, use serums morning and night for a minimum of three months.


Beyond these daily treatments are at-home peels, which can jump-start the glowgetting process and boost the benefits of what you’re already using. Usually containing potent ingredients like glycolic acid, peels are most often packaged in individual mask-like sheets designed to leave on the skin for about 10 minutes, or 30

saturated pads to swipe across the cheeks, forehead and chin for maximum results in minimal time. Try Philosophy The Microdelivery, a vitamin C peptide peel, or Bliss That’s Incredi-peel. Use caution with sensitive skins, and use just once a week to avoid any irritation.


Don’t forget the eye area! Rollerballs are a girl’s best friend during the holidays and beyond, as they employ a cooling metal ball applicator to provide a lymphatic drainage effect, massaging away excess fluid around the eyes. Puffiness will quickly subside with the help of caffeine in Garnier Skin Renew Anti-Puff eye roller. If desired, layer a brightening eye cream on top, once the serum from the rollerball has penetrated.


Shine on with a fun, festive makeup look. A berry lip is a must-have this season, from Clinique’s sheer, raisin-y Almost Lipstick in Black Honey to Nars Audacious Lipstick in Liv, a deep, dark eggplant. A shimmery, neutral eye is the perfect compliment to the drama of the lip color. Strategic highlighting with YSL’s secret weapon, Touche Eclat, instantly hides dark circles and shadows and makes anyone look wide awake. If eyes are the focus, go smoky in an unexpected color like green-gold. Call it khaki or olive, just don’t call it boring: apply Laura Mercier eye shadow in Sherazade, and layer a bit of the line’s baked eye shadow in Black Karat on top for extra glimmer. Add a slick of black liner, lots of mascara, and voila...sparkly party eyes! Pair with a nude lip for balance. Nails are (still) having a moment. An easy way to be on-trend is to do a solid color with one accent nail in a second color on each hand. Plums with hints of gold, wines and charcoals all look elegant and modern. To amp up the glam, try this easy ombre technique: apply a first shade, creamy or metallic, in the color of your choice. Then take a second, glittery polish and brush it down to cover the top one-third of the nail vertically in three or four imperfect sweeps of varying lengths. Bonus: the glitter coat on the tips will help resist chipping! Check out Deborah Lippmann for the best variety of glitter polishes in all colors. If you keep one resolution this year, make it the one where you pamper yourself, take care of your skin and wear sunscreen. People will be asking where you got that glow. NIKKI SALVO IS A MAKEUP ARTIST AND SKINCARE SPECIALIST WITH CLINIQUE AT BLOOMINGDALE’S IN SAN DIEGO. SHE HAS DONE MAKEUP FOR HAPPY BRIDES ON THEIR WEDDING DAY, AND WOMEN OF ALL AGES FOR DAY TO NIGHT LOOKS. SHE CAN BE REACHED FOR AN INDIVIDUAL CONSULTATION AT NICHOLE. SALVO@GMAIL.COM.


mazel &

mishagoss The New Chanukah Dictionary


his holiday season, express yourself with some new-ish, true-ish Jewish vocabulary. Because why should someone so cool-ish ever sound foolish?

Spellukah, noun. A democratic way to settle any dispute over how you should write the word Chanukah. “You spell Hanukah, I spell Chanuka, let’s call the whole thing off!”GeltnGuiltnGlutton, noun. One who buys a big supply of the little mesh bags of chocolate gelt weeks ahead of time in preparation for Chanukah parties and adorning presents, only to stealthily gobble them all up which results in more shopping trips to replenish original stash. (Similar phenomenon as occurs with Halloween candy.) PresentStation, noun. Designated area of the house (cleared away of all furniture by grunting, complaining males) for displaying ever-accumulating wrapped gifts for all eight nights. Most effective space includes motion detectors and iPhone surveillance system. Oy! DecembeRemember, verb. A way to remind children who envy their nonJewish friend’s Christmas celebrations to appreciate their own, i.e., Every year I need to DecembeRemember my twin sons that we get eight nights (all in a row!) of fun, while little Johnny down the block only has one morning. Nebbishwebish, adjective. A description of an online invitation to a Chanukah party used primarily to save postage. Who cares?

It’s not like Barbra Streisand or Adam Sandler emailed it. If they had, we’d call that, “NebbishCelebish.” ShooJewzoo, verb. The act of insisting that guests (upon their initial arrival) stop loitering in the kitchen, schmoozing, and attacking food like a bunch of untamed animals with ferocious appetites. (The formal living room has been beautifully prearranged for this purpose, for heaven’s sake!) L.A.S.E.R.; acronym. Stands for: “Latke Applesauce Sour cream Eating Recruiter” One who makes it their business to convert a purist (single topping) latke consumer over to the other side; combining both fruit and dairy into one neat bite. Ignoramenorah, adjective. A way to describe children who rush through the beautiful tradition of candle lighting so they can rip into their presents (and the adults who allow this). Brisketfixedit, verb. The cocky action of giving unsolicited advice to the young hostess of a Chanukah party (usually by a wise grandmother type) that results in a moister main course. Often involves adding warm water (a “secret” ingredient?) to the pan drippings for extra gravy. MessiahJeremiah, proper noun. Someone (usually named Jeremiah but can be a Joseph or even a Zack) who has religious sightings in the fun waxy build-up on the menorah. There’s one in every bunch. Note:

shapes resembling Jesus will be met with raised brows. Fryerliargoodbyers, plural noun. Those who fabricate reasons why they cannot help cook the latkes in a deep pan of oil, (spattering hot grease all over their blouse) then abruptly depart the kitchen. Fryercomplier, noun. That lone individual who remains near the stovetop after all other fryerliargoodbyers have exited because he/she couldn’t think fast enough. Jiltguilt, noun. Feeling of obligation to come back inside kitchen to help the overwhelmed fryercomplier, who was previously abandoned. This results in a “Mitzvah-Shvitza-Splitza.” (see below) Mitzvah-Shvitza-Splitza, noun. The unspoken agreement between the two people who end up frying all the latkes together. Their reward for perspiring over the burning stove? Getting to share as much potato pancakes as they want, (fresh from the pan while they’re still hot!) before carrying out the cold platter for the others. Also known as “WarmaKarma.”













A 2013 graduate of SDJA, Josh Lurie, is among the first students to attend a program at the University of Southern California Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy for Arts, Technology and the Business of Innovation. The Academy was founded by music and entrepreneurial icons Dr. Dre (Andre Young) and Jimmy Iovine, who donated $70 million to USC, and is designed to serve students whose interests range from marketing, business entrepreneurship, and computer science and engineering to audio and visual design and the arts. “My experiences have been great thus far in the program,” Lurie said. Instead of the traditional university teaching environment, faculty in this program work together to provide cross-curricular experiences for the students, and students benefit from the valuable networking opportunities they are provided while learning. “I have gotten to know and get close with 30 other very creative and interesting people,” Lurie said. “We are constantly in the Garage, the workspace, outside of class hours. We work and hang out together and are becoming very good friends.” According to USC, “The goal of the academy is to shape the future by nurturing the talents, passions, leadership and risk-taking of uniquely qualified students who challenge conventional views of art and industry.” The university is hoping to attract students who are “motivated to explore and create new art forms, technologies and business models—and who will benefit from a stimulating environment that fosters exploration and discovery beyond traditional educational and disciplinary boundaries.” “All the teachers are creative in their teaching styles and have friendly personalities,” Lurie said. “They are also highly intelligent and have a lot of experience in their respective fields. Often, different teachers work together on projects. For example, my Rapid Visualization and Disruptive Innovation classes have one final project that requires the application of skills learned in both classes.” “I am experiencing the future of education,” said Lurie. “The classes are dynamic, relevant, and very interesting. I love how our work is all-project based so we can showcase our abilities rather than having to memorize facts for a test. The resources and care the program has for its students are also great, and it has the close student-faculty relationship that I experienced at San Diego Jewish Academy.”





The San Diego Jewish Academy will provide perspective parents with an opportunity to tour the 56-acre campus, visit classes, and speak with administrators January 14, 2015, 9-10:45 p.m. The pluralistic preschool–12th grade school serving the Jewish community will also give perspective parents insight into the full menu of options for students, including, college guidance, athletics, extra-curricular activities, and more. Current students will speak to prospective parents and current parents will also share why they chose SDJA for their family. Registration is required to attend and space is limited. Contact SDJA at or call (858) 704-3717 to reserve your space.



A new book, “The Case Against Academic Boycotts of Israel,” includes essays from more than 25 international scholars who take a cold look at the future of Israel and the impact of the academic Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement. It tackles tough issues that many have found impossible to confront until now, like the role of anti-Semitism in calls for the abolition of the Jewish state. AMCHA Initiative ( cofounder Tammi Rossman-Benjamin’s chapter, “Interrogating the Academic Boycotters of Israel on American Campuses” takes a critical look at the individual faculty who support and promote the academic boycott, what ideologies motivate the boycotters, how they have used their university positions to promote the boycott and stifle criticism and which university conditions allow for this behavior. The AMCHA Initiative is a non-profit organization based in California that is dedicated to investigating, documenting, and combating anti-Semitism at institutions of higher education in America.



(Hebrew - English - Hebrew)

Legal • Depositions • Tax Forms • Contracts • Medical Business • Official Documents • Academic/Education Certificates

Zion Avdi, J.D.

Voting Member – American Translators Association (ATA) Registered Court Interpreter - CA Judicial Council



We will begin shipping orders after the holidays.

Have fun learning about animals and enjoy quality time with your whole family without computers, smart phones or TV.


INVITES YOU HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS It’s beginning to look a lot like the holidays at La Vida Del Mar and La Vida Real, award-winning senior living communities located in Solana Beach and Rancho San Diego. Prospective residents considering the exceptional retirement lifestyle options offered at each of these communities are invited to share in the festivities at the annual Home for the Holidays events. Join us at La Vida Del Mar on Thursday, December 4th from 3-6pm; or at La Vida Real on Friday, December 5th from 1-4pm to view decorated residences, enjoy festive entertainment and delicious holiday treats.

ABOUT THE ANIMAL WINNER: Included: 144 animal questions & facts, game board and 9 animal pieces. EASY, MEDIUM & HARD questions. Up to 6 players can play, plus 1 reader. The first person to reach exactly 500 points becomes The Animal Winner. GAME IS FOR ALL AGES 5 TO 105 We are looking forward to having Animal Winner in schools, synagogues, senior homes, youth camps & in all homes where families value their time together. Family Board Games LLC will be paying 10% of every sale to charities.

To learn more, visit WWW.LCHAIMMAGAZINE.COM




is thrilled to continue its Intimate Classics Series featuring some of the brightest stars and emerging talent.


Jeffrey Siegel, a Center favorite, returns with his signature enthusiasm, world-class credentials, and astounding virtuosity. His keyboard conversations are more than just a concert -- they provide avid music lovers a more meaningful listening experience and make the joy of music accessible to audiences of all ages. The brilliantly polished concert-with-commentary format includes brief, captivating remarks introducing dynamic performances of piano masterpieces, and concludes with a fast-paced Q&A. Collaborating with such respected orchestras at the Berlin Philharmonic and London Symphony and bringing Keyboard Conversations to audiences across the country, Siegel has a memorable character and musical eloquence that reaches far and wide. 1.11.15 @ 3:00pm.





About The California Center for the Arts, Escondido With a mission of bringing people together to discover, create and celebrate both the visual and performing arts, The California Center for the Arts, Escondido is the cultural center of North San Diego County. 340 N. Escondido Blvd., Escondido (800) 988-4253 •


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