23 March 2007


I'm engaged.

Recent Goings-On In My Life: Renewed Injury, Insurance, & Civil Marriage

A lot has gone on in my life these past two weeks, focusing on the three topics listed in this posting's header.
It all started with my waking up last Tuesday morning (13 March 2007) and trying to get out of bed. Whilst in this process, I moved my leg in such a fashion as to reinjure it (see here for the [continuing] story of my knee and its injury). I then found out, in the process of contacting my insurance company (Aetna) of trying to find out who my doctor was, that I had been uninsured since the beginning of March since I hadn't renewed my insurance policy (the cover letter I had received two months before had warned me about ending my insurance policy were I not to renew on 1 March 2008, so I figured I was fine for the time being - little did I know it was merely a typo, meant to be this year).
I then spoke with my girlfriend about my situation and we contemplated about me getting on her insurance policy (she's a public school teacher). We then figured how might one go about such a thing? You need to be married. What does one need to do to be married? So, looking it up online, we then went and applied for a marriage license. Afterwards, we then went to pick out an engagement ring (we had planned
this part since before the preceeding weekend). Two nights later, we then had a civil marriage performed and were legally married (but not Jewishly/halakhically). So I was one step closer to getting insured and getting my knee looked at.
Then came Saturday night when, as I was getting up from laying down, my knee pained me once again and I waited and waited and waited for it to get better. It was not to be immediate. For over twenty hours, I moved very little until Sunday night. I still was rather immobile the following day, Monday, and missed school that day, though a classmate of mine picked me up crutches, which allowed me to move around, albeit with difficulty.
However, throughout the rest of the week, with each passing day, my knee has improved, though, as of this posting, I am still not yet quite walking on it.

02 March 2007

Finally Responding about YCT

It's been nearly two weeks since I first read a certain article printed in a certain haredi (ultra-Orthodox) paper questioning my school, that had been widely disseminated across the Internet and popping up on various blogs. While I had initially wanted to respond to the article in a thorough way, I was concerned, however, of not being properly able to respond to the concerns and questions brought up by the author of that article. In addition to that, I was also wondering about the time that that would take up. My sense of wanting to properly respond to various concerns were not being helped by reading the proliferation of blogs covering this issue - this topic was waiting to be addressed.
After a week of waiting and thinking it over, reading other blog postings, and reading comments threads, I wanted to put in my two cents' worth on this issue (if this had happened a year ago, I would have responded much earlier - trying to get a lot of readership, but have realized that that's not so important). I think there's a certain value to hearing from one within the institution under discussion, even if it is only from a student. However, fortunately, I held off and there are multiple responses to the issues brought up in the article. Most notably is the recent response composed by one of my rebbeim, Rabbi Nathaniel Helfgot, wherein he deals with several of the issues brought up in the article. For a couple of other responses in the blogosphere, see Jonathan Baker's critique of the article as well as Rabbi Josh Yuter's posting.
Anyways, I think people were waiting to see if I had a response to the article. At this point, it's really not worth the effort as the Yatedniks are probably not going to be convinced, and a lot of Modern Orthodox people, like many I know have just laughed at the article, some saying it was a good promotional tool for YCT. However, I think there are a number of people who sincerely do not know what to make of the attack or of the school (perhaps they don't know much about the school or something) and would stand to benefit from a thought out response. Anyways, I'm satisfied for the time being with Rabbi Helfgot's response and I don't really feel like bothering to respond to the article (lest I legitimate it (hamevin yavin)).
Postings discussing the recent article:
"YCT: Time To Take A Stand" | "Glass Houses Alert" | "Conflicted about YCT, Yated and R' Harry Maryles" | "Yated's YCT Critique Critiqued" | [untitled] | "Not Taking A Stand" | "The Challenge of Constructive Criticism" | "Yated Ne'eman's Latest Against Chovevei" | "Rabbi Chaim Rapoport -- Open Letter to the Yated Ne'eman
" | "In Defense of YCT" | "A Letter from R. Nati Helfgot" | "In Defense of YCT" | "Is YCT Treif or Not?" | "Strange Bedfellows" | "Taking Each Other Down A Peg" | "Paradoxical Faith" | "What Makes A New Movement Acceptable?" | "Yated Exposes YCT as a 'Threat To Halakhic Judaism'" | "How mighty are the righteous...." | "Yated" | "YCT-Yated Ne’eman Dustup" | "The Yated - a Mamzer?"