September 02, 2005

I am going to be on American television!

I got over the fact that I failed statistics. It just mean I'll stay an additional term at university, instead of working fulltime while writing my thesis. It also means I can drop one course this term, which is extremely helpful cause I've promised my boss to work 3 days a week, and I've signed up for belly dancing lessons.
I confess I felt better when I saw that most of the students who took the exam with me failed, meaning that it was just an exceptionally difficult exam (as opposed to be meaning hopeless).
Where my paycheck is concerned, I felt really stupid when I realised that there had actually not been any mix up with my paycheck. My boss (who is educated in business, and obsessed with everything concerned with business & profit), patiently explained to me every little detail of how "when I'm making so much money, I will pay an awful lot of tax, and therefore not get much money paid" (Icelanders have to pay 39% tax). I told my boss that in that case, he should pay me more money. But he just laughed and said "but the tax will take it away anyway!".

Yesterday a funny incident took place.
An American entered the shop where I work, and the following dialogue took place:

American: Excuse me, we are making a documentary about Iceland, Icelandic designs, etc (and yara yara). Would it be all right with you if we filmed in here?
Me: How long will it take?
American: About 10 minutes
Me: Well, okay
American: And would it be all right if we asked a few questions?
Me: Ehrm.. Who is going to be seeing this?
American: It's for the American market
Me: Well nobody I know then. So why not!
American: Great, so we'll be here in 5 minutes!

Okay, so 5-10 minutes later he and 2 other guys came with a huge camera, all kinds of equipment and stuff, and spent ages on finding the right background for interviewing me! They went like "do you feel ready?". And I went "well I'm just supposed to answer a few questions, right?"
Then they made me stand right in front of the camera, and asked me a MILLION questions about wool, lava, runes, tourists, what tourists think of Icelanders, etc etc, and I just talked and talked.
Then they filmed everything I had talked about, went by everything I said literally (which is funny, cause I'm no expert). I am not used to cameras in my face, but they assured me I had done "wonderful". I know they say that to everyone, of course, but it still made me feel better! They took my name, and said they were going to put it on the screen while I was being interviewed.
After they were gone I thought to myself that it's funny that I was ready to say no if the documentary would be filmed in Iceland, or even just anywhere in Scandinavia, where I know people. But in the United States, where hundreds of millions reside.. that didn't bother me!
So anyway, if you live in the US, keep your eyes open for documentaries about Iceland. Cause I might be in it! Oh and.. remember that the camera always adds 10 pounds. I'm thinner in real life! :p

Posted by Maria at 01:41 PM  Permalink | Comments (8)
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Hi Maria! Sorry I wasn't here for a while. I've been busy too. Now I missed comforting you on your worst day, but it looks like you're going to be ok. I just hope you will find some time for a vacation?

I'm sure you had done wonderful on the TV, and you are probably no less an expert than many people talking in documentaries. But I do understand you about not wanting to appear on TV where people know you. You can never know what it would look like after the edition. The result can probably be embarrassing even if you talk about wool.

Posted by: Orly at September 3, 2005 08:02 PM Permalink

Well, I couldn't find it on the web, but look at this tear-jerker that I did find:

Maria, a young woman from Silesia, replies to an advertisement by the Icelandic farmers association that promises fortune and happiness. At last, a chance to get out of the reception camp where she has had to live with her mother since their escape. On her journey there, she meets the seaman Olaf who tells her some old sagas. She falls in love. Olaf wants to fetch her from the farm and marry her. Working on the land is unfamiliar and tough, her loneliness knows no bounds, and painful memories of the last days of the war haunt her. And there is no sign of Olaf. But the spectacular landscape with its powerful crescendo of colours gives her strength. The farmer starts to pester her sexually. She escapes to Reykjavik, but cannot find Olaf. Instead, she meets the Jew Bruno who was only accepted by Iceland because he can play the flute. She learns from Bruno, who secretly loves Maria but is dangerously ill, that Olaf has since married and his wife is expecting a child. However, Olaf is not happily married and tries to seduce her a second time. But Maria remains strong and decides for Bruno instead....

Posted by: David Boxenhorn at September 3, 2005 08:44 PM Permalink

TV tales:

Both when I was in 'Jeopardy!' and when I was in 'Who wants to be a millionaire?' we got makeup. We had to be powdered to avoid reflections from fatty skin. On both occasions we were told that we could get additional makeup on request. On one occasion they told the tale of some previous male contestant who dared to try some eyeliner.

This was told as if eyeliner on a man has to be a good thing, since men usually don't use it. If men don't do it, doing it must be good. I learned over the years that the prime goal for womankind is to make men look ridiculous, and so I also learned to just say 'No' to any suggestion coming from the lips of a woman...well most suggestions, at least.

Anyway, on both occasions I did actually make additional requests. I asked them to add a third eye with a cat pupil on my forehead. They refused, even though I told them how happy it would make my son.

What can you learn from this story?
I dunno...

Posted by: Torbjörn Karfunkel at September 4, 2005 12:10 AM Permalink

Orly, I was wondering where you had been!

David: I absolutely LOVED the story!
One could think it were about me. Everybody loving & wanting to seduce me, Icelanders and Jews alike. NOT!

Torbjörn: My sister was on a tv show as well and won a car. They also put tons of make up on her. But these were just a few guys making a documentary.. They promised me it wasn't candid camera!

Posted by: Maria at September 4, 2005 09:02 PM Permalink

Oh hell, was it "Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations?!!!"

I totally saw you on it. It ran about two weeks ago, when this dude went to Iceland, and he interviewed you in the gift shop and I thought to myself:

That looks just like Hatshepsut!

HAHAHA! OMG. That's awesome! You did really well and looked pretty and had NO ACCENT at all. I am impressed.

Posted by: DeoDuce at September 5, 2005 03:13 AM Permalink

Spork take a chill pill. The interview was like 4 days ago :p

Posted by: Maria at September 5, 2005 11:41 AM Permalink

Belly dancing is terrific fun. I hope you love it as much as I do.

Posted by: Luz at September 12, 2005 11:49 PM Permalink

ha thats cool.. i will deffinetly keep watch for the documentry... i just found this website...i already forget you are jewish? and u live in iceland?

if u can answer me by my email..i would like to talk to you bye

Posted by: josh at September 22, 2005 01:47 AM Permalink

September 04, 2005

Ai ai ai

Yemenite art. Don't these look amazing?

I'm a bad person for spending a lot of money on my obsession... Decorative, large ear rings, especially from other continents. This website has become my new online hangout place.
But hey, I'm supporting Israeli economy. Israel gets money, I get ear rings (and thus become a happier person, despite being broke). So it's a win win situation!

Posted by Maria at 08:55 PM  Permalink | Comments (2)
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Too big, aren´t they?

Posted by: Kantor at September 5, 2005 08:46 PM Permalink

Ok Maria:in English... Let me know your opinion.

Now it is not longer about disengagement, but perhaps you will find it interesting.

Posted by: Kantor at September 5, 2005 08:50 PM Permalink

September 09, 2005

Surprise! Not...

Can anyone guess why this picture is unrealistic?

Shalom: Arafat wasn’t poisoned

Foreign minister slams reports suggesting Israel may have been behind death of late Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat; reports are baseless, meant to slander Israel, Shalom charges

The time has come to put an end to the conspiracy theories against Israel, Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom said Thursday following the release of test results suggesting former PLO Chairman Yasser Arafat may have died of AIDS.

Mystery remains

Ten months after Arafat died in a Paris hospital, the cause of death remains shrouded in mystery. The official hospital report written at the time is jealously guarded; only Arafat's widow Suha and senior PLO officials have been allowed access.

Palestinians: he was poisoned

Accoriding to "The Seventh War," Arafat's private physician, Dr. Ashraf al-Kurdi, who was pushed to the sidelines during the last weeks of Arafat's life, said he knows that French doctors found the AIDS virus in Arafat's blood.

Without specifying how he got this information, al-Kurdi said the germs were injected into Arafat in order to cover up signs of intentional poisoning.

Al-Kurdi is not the only Palestinian who believes Arafat was poisoned. Senior PA officials such as Mohammed Dahlan, Jibril Rajoub, and current PA Foreign Minister – and Arafat's nephew - Nasser al-Kidwa have all accused Israel of killing the longtime Palestinian symbol.

Well yeah, that's soooo likely. Especially since everything he every said and stood for was a pile of shit. Lets just face it. The dude was gay, liked little boys (not that I am putting homosexuals and child molesters in the same category), and had AIDS:

Ion Pacepa, who was deputy chief of Romanian foreign intelligence under the Ceaucescu regime and who defected to the West in 1978, says in his memoirs the Romania government bugged Arafat and had recordings of the Arab leader in orgies with his security detail.

Various Israeli security sources have in the past suggested publicly Arafat might be homosexual. They've claimed Arafat's former personal driver – a Mossad double agent – used to find teenage boys to bring back to the PLO leader. His wife, Suha, mostly lived abroad and rarely saw her husband.

Posted by Maria at 12:10 AM  Permalink | Comments (4)
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Let's see... If Arafat had died of AIDS, they certainly would have made his medical records public, on the other hand, if he had been poisoned by the Israelis, they would surely have tried to keep them secret. Yeah, that makes sense!

Posted by: David Boxenhorn at September 9, 2005 01:47 PM Permalink

Maria, I couldn't care less what Arafat died of.

BTW I won't be visiting here for a while. I'm finally having a real vacation after 2 years. Should be back by the end of the month. Take care.

Posted by: Orly at September 9, 2005 07:30 PM Permalink

David: LOL exactly

Orly my dear.. you may not care, but that doesn't mean that there aren't others who do.
I hope you have a nice holiday.. will we be seeing photos?

Posted by: Maria at September 9, 2005 11:07 PM Permalink

Come now. Calling him homosexual is an insult to homosexuals.

Posted by: Alice at September 16, 2005 09:05 PM Permalink

September 11, 2005

Why don't they just call it "Arafat-day", while they're at it

Like it just never happened?

Tony Blair is apparently being urged to cancel Holocaust Day in England.

Committee recommends canceling British Holocaust Day, says it offends Muslims

Advisors appointed by British Prime Minister Tony Blair after the London bombings have proposed to cancel Holocaust Memorial Day, claiming it is offensive to the Muslim community, The Sunday Times reports.

While Blair has yet to respond to the proposal, the idea prompted a harsh response from the Jewish community.

According to the proposal, Holocaust Day would be replaced with Genocide Day, which would recognize the mass murder of Muslims in Palestine, Chechnya and Bosnia as well as people of other faiths, the Times said.

The committee of advisors said the special status of Holocaust Day encourages a sense of alienation among extremists, as the day "excludes" Muslims.

I certainly have thoughts on this, but instead of commenting personally I've decided to post some of the comments that other readers wrote on Ynet's newssite:

Holocaust days does not exclude Moslems

They are as much part of Holocaust day as the Germans

Ilan , Ariel
Abu Mazen's Paper on the Holocaust

Didn't Abu Mazen (Mahmood Abbas) once write a thesis that the Holocaust never happened, and is a hoax to gain sympathy for Jews? Apparently, Prime Minister Tony Blair agrees with that.

Johnny Weintraub , Sugar Land, Texas

Does the history offend people when it's only to stating facts?

I don't care if some people feel sad or guilty. We have our own history, and we shouldn't rewrite it just because it's not convenient for some (extremist) muslims.
Yes, some Muslims were collaborators with Hitler, like Jerusalem's Imam Husseini... Others were strong opponents and refused to sacrify its own jewish citizens, like Morrocan King Mohammed 5th z"l who was under french (collaborator ) occupation.

Why don't they ask for a new remembering day? There were many other genocides, in Rwanda, Armenia, but NOT based on religious, but ethnical parameters.

These people are just interested by cancelling the Jewish comemoration, and have hatred motivations. This means it's just a racist objective; it should and must be condemned for that.
yoel , Switzerland (Maria's comment: PJ, is this your Joel??)

Posted by Maria at 12:34 PM  Permalink | Comments (0)
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Trackback from Rishon Rishon, Interred with their bones:
I went to my little village's makolet (מכולת) - general store last week. Pasted on the window, where announcements of local concern are often posted, was the announcement of the funeral of my neighbor's daughter. I stood s...

September 19, 2005

Why must I always name these posts??

Lately my life has reminded me a little of a painting by Salvador Dali, the master of surrealism.
I guess I'll write a post that makes sense to the human brain, as soon as I snap out of this condition, and find myself back in the "realm of naturalism".

"Table" by Salvador Dali

*For fun, definition of the word "surreal":

adj 1: characterized by fantastic imagery and incongruous
juxtapositions; "a great concourse of phantasmagoric
shadows"--J.C.Powys; "the incongruous imagery in
surreal art and literature" [syn: phantasmagoric, phantasmagorical,
2: resembling a dream; "night invested the lake with a
dreamlike quality"; "as irrational and surreal as a dream"
[syn: dreamlike]

Posted by Maria at 03:23 PM  Permalink | Comments (2)
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....why? what is your condition now? sublime bliss? :-)

Posted by: Una * at September 19, 2005 04:22 PM Permalink

Sublime bliss? Hah, not bad! Did you come up with that yourself? :-).

Posted by: Maria at September 19, 2005 05:03 PM Permalink

September 21, 2005


With the British cancellation of holocaust day being joined by an 'Hamas museum', I am beginning to feel as though "the celebration of slaughtering the innocent" is about to gain public recognition.

I myself should make an attempt to ignore what these brainless monkeys are doing! But the fact still remains, that there are a lot of people there who have a personal attachment to the places that are now being turned into what is nothing short of farse.
Give them an inch, and they will take that inch, the mile it lies on, the land it lies on, and spread dirt all over it.

I'm sorry for the negativity, but I am angry.

Synagogue to become Hamas museum

Izz el-Din al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’ military wing, plans to set up exhibit of the terror group’s ‘military industry’ in synagogue of evacuated settlement of Netzarim. On display: Suicide attack apparatus, missiles stones used to ‘abolish the Gaza occupation’

The destroyed synagogue in the evacuated Gaza settlement of Netzarim is expected to be converted into a temporary Hamas museum in the next few days.

On Saturday members of Izz el-Din al-Qassam Brigades , Hamas’ military wing, plan to set up an exhibit of the terror group’s “military industry” in what used to be a synagogue.

The exhibit is set to be on display for three days, and will be open to the public from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Pullout Aftermath

Hamas leader prays in Gaza synagogue

Hours after thousands of Palestinians desecrated synagogues in Gaza, setting them on fire and taking buildings apart by hand, members of the Palestinian terror group Hamas, headed by senior Hamas chief Mahmoud Zahar, arrived at the synagogue in Kfar Darom and held a Muslim prayer session at the site
Full Story

The group said in a statement that “all of the tools used by Izz el-Din al-Qassam Brigades to abolish the Gaza occupation will be on display.”

Hamas promises that visitors will be able to see all of the weapons, “from stones to instruments used in suicide attacks and the ‘tunnel war.’” Missiles and rockets will also be on display, the groups said.

The decision to use the synagogue for the display was not coincidental. Immediately following the IDF’s withdrawal from Gaza senior Hamas members said, “The synagogues are not religious structures, as they were built illegally."

Marching to West Bank settlements

The exhibit is part of Hamas’ show of strength, which is aimed a celebrating the army’s pullout, raising the group’s profile ahead of the upcoming Palestinian elections and warning all those who are considering to disqualify Hamas from participating in the general elections in accordance with Israel’s demand.

Palestinian Authority officials say Hamas is also trying to present itself as an alternative to the Authority with organized political and military branches.

Posted by Maria at 12:14 PM  Permalink | Comments (5)
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I don't want you to be more depressed, but did you see this?

Posted by: David Boxenhorn at September 22, 2005 10:28 AM Permalink

Yes I just saw it, actually. Shocking, and at the same time something you'd almost except from the French!

Posted by: Maria at September 22, 2005 11:36 AM Permalink

I must corect your mistake Maria,
Tony Blair did not cancel holocaust day at the end.

He decided not to, he almost did but did not.
Check what you write, so people can not come to you in complaints that you are writing lies.
I say that because I care maria.

Bless bless.

Posted by: Assaf at September 22, 2005 05:14 PM Permalink

Uhm Assaf.. Canceling holocaust isn't exactly like "canceling child support". It's a question of honoring a memory. The fact that the question of canceling it was raised, makes me feel like the British (or those concerned) have dishonored the memory of an event that should never be forgotten.
But thanks for your concern anyway ;)

Posted by: Maria at September 23, 2005 12:20 PM Permalink

It was Tony Blair's government that inaugurated Holocaust Day in the first place. Regardless of the imbecile quacking in the media Blair was never likely to cancel it. Unfortunately Britain, along with everywherelse, has its share of individuals who jump on a "blame the Jews" bandwagon given any chance but to attribute it to "the British" en masse is a little much.

Posted by: Luz the Magpie at October 7, 2005 11:10 PM Permalink

Simon Wiesenthal's death

Simon Wiesenthal, a truly admirable individual whose actions deserve to be remembered, has passed away. I saw a short but heart warming article in the Jerusalem Post discussing the life of this man, hero and lifelong nazi hunter. Here are bits:

Wiesenthal's war

Simon Wiesenthal's death is not just the Jewish people's loss. He should be sincerely mourned by the entire civilized world – by anyone still dedicated to justice, unafraid to acknowledge humanity's dark past and determined to learn its lessons.

Today, 60 years after history's single greatest premeditated crime, it's not only the inexorable march of time that dims universal memories but concerted efforts to diminish or altogether deny the Holocaust. Even immediately after the wholesale industrialized slaughter, the world wasn't in a mood to remember, much less punish. Indeed the great powers, embroiled in their Cold War, facilitated the escape of prominent henchmen.

It was this indifference that Wiesenthal took on, almost quixotically. He was alone, without money or power, himself the surviving inmate of several concentration camps, who lost 89 members of his own family. The Galician-born architect could have understandably, like many survivors, devoted his energies to rebuilding his personal life.

Read rest of article..

Posted by Maria at 12:19 PM  Permalink | Comments (2)
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Please spread this:

It's a short documentary from "60 minutes" about how news are fabricated by the palestinians. You can read more about it on:

And, yes...I'm gonna put pictures from my trip to Israel on a webpage soon. (Hear that, Orly?) Right now I'm up to my neck in pro-Israeli lobbying, and the results are good.


Posted by: Torbjörn Karfunkel at September 26, 2005 10:42 PM Permalink

It seems it is not at all from "60 minutes", it's just made to look as though it's from "60 minutes".

Posted by: Torbjörn Karfunkel at September 28, 2005 08:10 AM Permalink

September 29, 2005

More on fabricated news

By Torbjörn Yehoshua's request (who deserves thanks and appreciation for his work), here's a recommended video about how News are fabricated by palestinians.

Posted by Maria at 12:58 PM  Permalink | Comments (0)
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Spilling the beans where my silence is concerned

Yesterday afternoon, as I sat with a friend during a break at university, she suddenly said: I've been visiting your website repeatedly, but you never write anything anymore. Are you suffering from writer's block?
The truth is that writer's block is the last thing that I am experiencing right now. Infact, I am feeling more inspired and happier than I can remember ever having felt before. But the reasons for my newfound happiness is indeed what is taking up all my extra time, including that which would normally (or at least sometimes) have been spent on blogging.
Well flashing a secret is a bad habit, so I better just spill the beans!
The fact of the matter is, that the impossible has occured in my life on this isolated little island in the Arctic.
You see.. One afternoon at work, not too long ago, I was experiencing another gray, eventless day in Reykjavik. Then for some miracle of a reason, the sweetest person I've ever known happened to roam into my shop. This person happened to be an Israeli, who had somehow found himself lost "here in this desert", as he likes to call Iceland. And well, my life hasn't been the same since.
It is quite the coincidence that I should find this guy. He once told me how his co workers like to tell the joke about how "there are three Jews in Iceland: Bobby Fischer, the president's wife, and him".
So I guess I'm in love. How weird is that?

Posted by Maria at 01:56 PM  Permalink | Comments (16)
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I'm so happy for you, darling! :-) :-) On other circumstances I wouldn't call it "the impossible", but in Iceland... I have to agree that this is some kind of a miracle.

I'm quite curious to know more about this guy, but of course I'm not pushing you to write more frequently. Some things are more important than writing.

(Oh yeah I've been to Italy and will have some pictures in a while.)

Posted by: Orly at September 29, 2005 02:12 PM Permalink

Italy.. great, can't wait to see the pictures! How was it?

Posted by: Maria at September 29, 2005 03:15 PM Permalink

FANTASTIC (try to say it in an Italian accent). I had a tour of the cities in the north with my mom and then met my "virtual" friend Ruggero, if you remember him. He and his wife (Maria) are amaizngly nice and they took me on a wonderful trip in the mountains and sea. Anyway, I'll let you know when I post the albums.

Posted by: Orly at September 29, 2005 04:20 PM Permalink

Can't wait

Posted by: Maria at September 29, 2005 04:45 PM Permalink

This is great news, Maria! Stick to the guy like a leech! (Does he have curly hair? ;) )

Orly, I had a great tour of Rome back in 1988. I was on Inter-rail with a friend of mine, and when we came to Rome we visited a very nice girl, Ariela. Both her parents were architects, so she new everything about every piece of stone in the city :) I think she's working at the Hebrew University now.

But I prefer Firenze.

Posted by: Torbjörn Karfunkel at September 29, 2005 06:43 PM Permalink

Wow! I knew something was up when you posted a comment on my blog consisting of just a ":)" Normally, I have come to expect a funny or sarcastic comment from you! But I guess that's what love will do to a person :)

Does this mean u may end up in Israel after all?

Posted by: Dave at September 29, 2005 09:32 PM Permalink

How inspiring and lovely! Life is indeed full of wonders. Very best wishes and happiness to you.

Posted by: Alice (Texas) at September 29, 2005 09:40 PM Permalink

That's great. Really nice. Hope it works out.

Posted by: David Boxenhorn at September 29, 2005 10:17 PM Permalink

Torbjörn: Well he doesn't have curly hair. But that's not a requirement! Oh and he reads my blog by the way :p

Dave: That particular post actually made me laugh my butt off, like so much that you write. I hope I will end up in Israel regardless.

Alice & David: so sweet, thanks

Posted by: Maria at September 30, 2005 12:02 AM Permalink

Mazel Tov!
This may be jumping the gun, but best wishes from Canada.

Keep us posted, but please, not too many details!


Posted by: Harry at September 30, 2005 01:41 AM Permalink

I am happy you are happy.
Best wishes.

Posted by: Assaf at September 30, 2005 02:38 AM Permalink

I can't believe you didn't tell me! I'm so happy for you, darling. Enjoy the joy. (and send me a photo, pronto!)

Posted by: Lisa at October 1, 2005 06:52 PM Permalink

This is the other Alice- grinning enormously. How awesome! Little Jacob Lars Jonsson sends his warmest regards and a heart-melting 'coo'. As do I. May you have a new year jammed with blessings. Gotta go feed him!

Posted by: Alice at October 2, 2005 12:30 AM Permalink

Droppint by to wish you and the lucky guy a very happy and sweet new year. And to everyone who reads this: Shana Tova, peace, health and happiness.


Posted by: Orly at October 3, 2005 02:36 PM Permalink

Dropping by to wish you and the lucky guy a very happy and sweet new year. And to everyone who reads this: Shana Tova, peace, health and happiness.


Posted by: Orly at October 3, 2005 02:37 PM Permalink

Harry: Don't worry ;)

Assaf: Thanks

Lisa: I actually tried to mail you, but the e-mail was returned to me!

Alice: I love you!

Orly: shana tova :)

Posted by: Maria at October 4, 2005 01:20 PM Permalink
moon phases