Friday, June 18, 2004

The Best and Worst Week

It's the weekend now, and as I look back at the last few days, I've come to the conclusion that it somehow managed to combine the most positive and most negative things that have happened to me recently. Socially, it was the best week I've had in quite a while. I went out with friends three times and had a great time with them.

But with my family, it has been the worst week since we discovered my nephew is autistic. Now we know that his pedophile teacher definitely molested him. When my middle sister (my nephew's aunt) told my eldest sister (his mother) that she just remembered that a while ago he told her that he had gone to the teacher's apartment to watch television. My eldest sister knew about this - she was told by the teachers that they do that once in a while when she first saw the kindergarten, but then she saw nothing wrong with it, since she assumed a large group of kids go. But now, it sounded alarming.

She asked my nephew whether he went with the teacher to his apartment. He said yes, and when she asked which other people were with them he said the two of them were alone. When she asked what they did there, he looked sad and didn't want to answer. When she asked again he said the teacher told him not to say.

I feel so sad and angry. I hope the police nail the guy. This man cannot be allowed to work with children. He should be in jail - but if that fails, he should at least not be a kindergarten teacher.

What added to the sadness of the week came today, when I found out my uncle is dying of cancer. He has a slowly progressing form of leukemia which has no cure. Half of those with this disease can live on for about 12 more years, half live less. Hopefully, a cure will be found in time.

It was the best of weeks, it was the worst of weeks. Unfortunately, this time the negative has a stronger effect on me, so it was a bad week for me, despite the three social outings.

Rocky Horror Picture Show

I am a RHPS Virgin no more! I just came back from the weirdest movie I have ever seen. Actually, I've seen quite a few odd films and this one isn't necessarily the King of Strange, but it definitely is the weirdest screening I've ever been to. They had a cast from the Israeli RHPS fan club who played the characters on stage while the film was showing, and we, the audience, through rice, confetti and water during the film. I still don't totally understand what the hell went on there - I couldn't hear all that took place in the film because of the audience's shouting, and neither could I understand all the shouting, which might have completed the picture for me.

It was odd. It was fun. It was quite an experience. It was definitely a one-time thing.

Tuesday, June 15, 2004

Pedophile in Kindergarten

This week we discovered that my nephew's male kindergarten teacher is probably a pedophile. In this kindergarten, the two teachers are a husband and wife. They have this thing where a kid that misbehaves is taken by the husband to a sort of "isolation" in the library room for a few minutes while the wife stays with the other children (that's weird in and of itself - it's an odd punishment). One 4 year old girl complained to her parents that he showed her his penis while they were in the library. The parents decided to remove their daughter from the kindergarten. The teachers called a meeting with the parents, and most parents decided to support them and keep their kids there.

Lately, my nephew has been rejecting my father and me, preferring to be with mostly women. Also, other signs have made my sister worry that he might have been molested. He doesn't seem upset - he looks very happy, but maybe something small happened that bothered him a bit but wasn't very traumatic. So my sister wisely decided to stop taking him to that kindergarten before anything more serious happens.

If the guy did anything to my nephew, and I suspect he probably did, I feel like waiting for him in a dark alley with a baseball bat. It's too bad nobody has gone to the police - a pedophile should not work with children. His wife pisses me off as well, since she seems to be turning a blind eye to this.

It's good my nephew is out of there. I hope he hasn't been too traumatized. The last two days he hasn't been rejecting me, so that's a good sign.

Friday, June 11, 2004

Skydiving and Dead Presidents

Today was Reagan's funeral. Former President George H. W. Bush, Reagan's VP, is supposed to sky dive right afterwards (either today or tomorrow, I'm not sure). At first I thought it was inappropriate for him to celebrate his 80th birthday in such a manner so close to his predecessor's funeral. I didn't watch the ceremony (I guess I subconsciously decide to watch famous funerals only if those who died did so tragically, like Yitzhak Rabin or Princess Diana), but I heard that Bush seemed very emotional, even choking up a bit during his eulogy. I've come to the conclusion that I was wrong. Bush is truly sad about Reagan's death, but life goes on. And tomorrow he will become an octogenarian, and he has every right to celebrate in any way he chooses.

Sunday, June 06, 2004

The State of Israel is run by clowns

Prime Minister Sharon fired the National Union ministers, Avigdor Lieberman (no relation to Senator Joe) and Benny Elon. Elon tried to avoid getting his pink slip, since it comes into effect 48 hours after he receives it, so he'd be able to vote against the disengagement plan in today's government meeting. He didn't succeed.

Members of Knesset Elon and Lieberman (it's great not to write Minister before their names) are far right wingers. Other than the fact that their policies don't match with the rest of the government's policies, the facts that Lieberman actively lobbies the idea of transferring Arab Israelis and that Elon was a bad tourism minister are themselves good causes for their dismissal. The government is much better without them.

But the farce didn't end there. All kinds of arm twisting went on till the very last second, when Benjamin Netanyahu (Treasury), Limor Livnat (Education) and Silvan Shalom (Foreign Affairs) stopped the government meeting in the middle. In the end an agreement was achieved. I'm not sure what I think of this compromise disengagement plan. I'm not crazy about it (but neither am I crazy about Sharon's original plan).

So what'll happen now? Political predictions aren't a good idea, especially in Israel, since everything could change. But here's my guess: The National Religious Party (Mafdal) will leave the government, Peres will try to get labor into the coalition, but most other Laborites will rightly bar him from doing so. They don't want to go to elections yet, though, so they'll be fighting oppositionists on most issues but will support the disengagement plan. Some Likud members might try to replace Sharon with Bibi, but Bibi himself doesn't want to be PM yet. I think he'll want to be elected PM with the next Knesset, which he hopes will be more comfortable for him.

So I think there will be a narrow government now, with a minority in the Knesset with just the Likud and Shinui's 55 MKs. There's going to be a long deadlock until either Bibi or Labor decide it's a good time for new elections (for themselves, of course, not for the country).

All this speculation, of course, goes down the drain if Sharon is indicted.
Sixty years since D-Day. Lots of world leaders and old war veterans are gathered in Normandy, France today. It's a historical date worth mentioning, though I don't really have anything special to say about it. I could wax philosophical about how the world has changed, but I'm sure that corny stuff was covered in all the speeches. Besides, just like they say that if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything, the same goes about when you don't have anything smart or meaningful to say.
Former President Ronald Reagan has passed away. I was just a kid when he was in office but I remember I liked the guy. He had the charisma to make a kid like me like him. He was just one of the two politicians I was familiar with at the time (the other one was NYC Mayor Ed Koch), during the years I spent in the States. Of course, at that young age I had no idea what his policies were and, well, when it's still the decade you were born in, you don't care about those things. In retrospect, I think he was a good leader on some issues (such as bringing an end to the Cold War) and bad on others (like the Iran-Contra scandal). All in all, he did more good than bad.

Just sad to think he died not knowing he was ever president.
Happy birthday to my blog!

One year ago, I started this blog to rant about my love-life (or lack thereof). That was back when I was hung up on Naomi, who I bearly speak to now, mostly just "hi how are you" when we pass by each other. Now I'm hung up on someone else who has a boyfriend and looking for someone available to get hung up on instead.

So, some statistics about the first 12 months of my blog (not including June 2004):

This is my 85th post. I posted an average of a bit under 7 posts per month. The month where I was most active was June 2003 (12 posts), followed by January 2004 (11 posts). I posted only twice each month during September, November and December 2003.

Anyway, today isn't just this blog's first anniversary. These are historical times, but I'll post a seperate post for each reason it's a historical day. That way, every person can comment about only what he wishes to comment (hey, a guy can dream that he has any readers), and besides, it's a way to raise the number of posts I have, I admit... :)

Thursday, June 03, 2004

Student Day 2004!

At the risk of some of my anonymity slipping away when some people might figure out which university I study in, I'll tell you about the big two-day student festival we had the last two days at a Mediterranean beach. 30 hours of shows. Some people camped there overnight, but I went back home and returned the next day. I was there less than most other people - arriving around sunset and leaving around two AM each night, since those hours were the main attraction, with Israeli artists performing. I had a great time, and each night I was with a different set of friends. On the way to and from the beach we passed by the army camp where I had my basic training - seems as disgusting from the outside as from the inside, but much less depressing (boot camp is certainly the worst time I had in the army).
Here's an incident that demonstrates how my nephew thinks, a story that can tell us something about the autistic mindset. My sister didn't feel well the other day while they were at our house, and she ran to the bathroom to throw up, but she didn't make it and puked just outside the bathroom. Sorry for the disgusting part - I don't mean to make readers feel sick, it's just important for the story. My nephew seemed like he doesn't understand how this can happen. First of all, he has never seen his mother throw up, and secondly, he knows that when people feel sick they should go to the bathroom. He was confused and didn't understand how she couldn't control herself. Also, he asked her "do you still don't want me to feel uncomfortable?" as if to check if her attitude hasn't changed, if she's still the same person despite the fact that she is now in a different situation from what he's used to. Last week, he asked a similar question when he first came to their apartment after a new air-conditioner was installed, and asked whether it was still the same home.

On the other hand, after my sister puked he said that he wants to hug her and seemed concerned. Empathy from an autistic kid. That's really remarkable.