For GTJ’s last feature before the Jewish Guy/Girl of the Year Competition, we are interviewing our three co-founders (interviews done by staff members Sheryl and Tila).
You decided to go to law school; is it because you are Jewish, your Jewish mother told you, or another reason?
I was rummaging through an old cabinet this past week when I noticed a stack of congratulations cards. As I investigated further I noticed that these were all letters to my mother congratulating her for a new baby boy. This baby boy was me. While looking through the “Mazel Tovs”, “L’Chaims”, I noticed one particular card. It was from a humor collection by a Rabbi Rosenberg. On this card was an elderly gentlemen, with a graying beard down to his chest. In his hand he held a baby, and in front of his face were two jars that said, “Medical School Fund” or “Law School Fund”. Inside the flap it said, “Some decisions can be tough.” Given the fact that my brother ended up in medical school and got there first, there was only one piggy bank left in the household. O’ the power of the Jewish mother!
You like to play the guitar, what other instruments do you play?
I do play the rock recorder (yes, recorders can rock), the Zamphona (a peruvian flute), and hand drums. Though nothing has allowed me to articulate my soul more than my guitar.
Where will GTJ be in 10 years?
GTJ will hopefully be international, and as ubiquitous as water or sunlight. GTJ in its simple form stands for the deep local and global Jewish family. It is with great hopes that our services will be used as a compass and calendar for Jews all over the world.
You can invite 4 people to your famous Shabbat dinners, who would they be?
Truthfully, I would love to invite more members of our own community. I know this question is designed for me to cite towards the greats of generations of current and past. However, I think there are the Shalom Aleichems, the Einsteins, the Rambams of our times living amongst us. I hope that some people catch the drift and understand that fame is fleeting, substance is truth, and invitations are open. However, to honor the spirit of the question, I would like to have Moses, Einstein, The Baal Shem Tov, and Harry Houdini at my dinner table.
Why GTJ? Why now?
There is a great quote from Rabbi Hillel, “If not now, then when?”
You performed at the last Happy Hour, how did that make you feel?
Performing was great and fun! Setting the technical equipment up, a nightmare. But performing music for me is about sharing. Oftentimes, when I sit in my studio (aka my bedroom), I often imagine that these sounds may be wasted if not shared. Fortunately, I am a huge believer that at least God listens to my music (the good and the atrocious).
What is the best part about the GTJ community?
The people. Every time I get to see an old friend or meet a new one, I am revivified and energized to take on new challenges and struggles in life. Without the community, I would find it difficult to possess the inspiration that I need to breathe, pray, and work everyday.