Author: Neal Ross Attinson

Neal Ross Attinson is one of those compulsive writers who feels naked without a pad and pencil. He lives with wife and cat and library in Sonoma, California.

“When young people ask me about death, I tell them: ‘We die a little every day. When you get to be my age, you get used to it.'”
— Near-centenarian Richard Meyers

Overheard in Sonoma

(For Leah Garchik’s back-page-of-the-San Francisco Chronicle feature.) Ms. Garchik, I was walking on the west side of Sonoma Plaza this morning when I passed a middle-aged touristy couple, just as the man was saying to his female companion, “Someday, she’ll…

History Lesson: Chain

“Everything you do, here and at home, is part of Sonoma Valley Jewish history.” That’s what I used to tell the students in our synagogue’s Hebrew school, and it’s also one of the lessons from this week’s Torah portion, Ki…

Vive La Difference

From Josee Wolff, The Torah: A Women’s Commentary: “…The pessimist observes a situation, generalizes about the bad aspects, and interprets them as a permanent and constant feature. In contrast, the optimist observes the same situation and sees the bad aspects,…

Lamed-Vavniks, Unite!

Are you a Lamed-Vavnik? According to Jewish tradition, there are 36 exceptionally righteous (read: supermensch-like) people in the world in each generation, and without whom the world would cease to exist. (In Hebrew counting, 36 is “lamed vav” (lamed =…

Confronting Evil

(From a friend, for Yom Hashoah/Holocaust Remembrance Day.) April 15, 1965 יוסף דוב סולוביצ’יק JOSEPH SOLOVEITCHIK Dear Dr. Vogel: I received your letter. Of course, you may quote me. The gist of my discourse was that Judaism did not approach…

5 Thoughts: Resist!

I DON’T USUALLY GET POLITICAL. But this is no time for silence. I did not vote for the current President. I find him arrogant, cruel and stupid. His policies, appointments, and disdainful comments about our institutions and values are fascistic…