March 30, 2007

Festival of Chametz

Prepare yourself for the Four Questions with the creative flavors of four Israeli artists making it in New York City: Sephardi-infused jazz by Ayelet Rose Gottlieb ; Beats by Modular Moods' DJ Handler backed by chanteuse Smadar Levi ; Short films by Aylam Orian ; Performance poetry by Eran Tzelgov.

Co-sponsored by Ben Gurion University of the Negev--where you can immerse yourself in Israel --and Jewlicious.

When: Saturday, March 31, 10:30pm till the Exodus
Where: The Knitting Factory, 74 Leonard Street, New York, NY 10013
Cost: $8 at the door, $5 presale or with donation of bread or grain at the door.
How: You can take the 1 or 9 train to Franklin Street, walk one block south to Leonard, turn left and walk a block & a half to the club
Contact: MiriamHaier -at-

Come for art, pre-Passover partying and the official launch of PresenTense Magazine's third issue! (which is, well, Issue Two)

More information at PresenTense Magazine

March 29, 2007

Nice, Jewcy Berger

This week, my good buddy and freelance journalist, Paul Berger, is writing as a guest blogger for the Daily Shvitz section of Berger not only posts daily about his perspective as an Englishman In New York, but he also juggles writing articles for the New York Times and Metro New York, as well as a few book projects. I think Jewcy made a great choice going with my buddy Berger Boy, and Paul confided in me that his sweet Jewish mum would be very proud.

Check out Berger's posts on the Daily Shvitz, and if you like his writing, let Jewcy know.

March 23, 2007

Kosher lUNCH in FlATBUSH

OK, L or I?

Regular readers of the ShaBlog may be familiar with a hobby/obsession of mine, which takes form in another blog called lowercase L. I usually keep the two blogs separate, but lately there has been a bit of crossover, including this week's post about lUNCH at Bermuda Restaurant, one of just five kosher restaurants participating in Dine in Brooklyn Restaurant Week this year. I wonder if when they told the printer to mark Bermuda as half off lunch, this is what they meant?

March 21, 2007


JR with fans Rivka and Nechama

When I walked into the Tea Lounge here in Park Slope, Brooklyn with my buddy Berger Boy for our weekly game of Scrabble, I was caught off guard when I heard someone say, "Hey, you're Shabot!" I was flattered to learn that Rivka and Nechama, two local Brooklyn gals, have been following my comic strip since its beginning in 2004. As the artist behind an obscur online cartoon series, I never would have expected anyone to recognize me out of context, so I was more than happy to doodle and sign autographs for my two new favorite fans.

Thanks for making my day, girls!

March 19, 2007

Share da Love with Seda' Club

I'm trying a little something different this year for Passover. With the increasing popularity of video sharing sites like YouTube and MySpace, I've decided to share my own Seda' Club cartoon as an embedded video. Now you can display the cartoon on your own web page and blogs!

Get the code to share Seda' Club on MySpace. The original high-quality Flash version is still available for you to enjoy here on this site.

Also, if you love Shabot rapping with 50 Cent, and you've can spare 50 Cents x2, you can download the mp3 for your iPod!

March 16, 2007

Bible History #1

Last year I discovered the unique comic art of Brad Neely. I just realized that George Washington, the highly contagious cartoon music video everyone was watching and singing at Jewlicious at the Beach, was created by the same genius.

Digging deeper into Neely's fantastic portfolio of animated works, I found his hilarious take on the story of Lot, as described in Professor Brothers - Bible History #1:

March 15, 2007

Best of All, the Festival

Misha the Frum Mouse meets the Jewish Robot

I arrived home in Brooklyn on Tuesday after spending a fun filled weekend participating in the Jewlicious at the Beach 3.0 festival, co-hosted by Beach Hillel in Long Beach, CA. The festival was well attended, with about 400 Jewish students all converging in the Alpert JCC for shabbat meals, wine tasting, music, arts and crafts, concerts, seminars, and open music jams.

I was honored to have been invited to conduct a "JewTube" seminar, about Jewish influence in online marketing and viral videos. Joining me in the discussion was fellow Jew-world song writer and comedic entertainer Eric Schwartz, a.k.a. Smooth E, who had given a hilarious live performance in the music festival the night before. We talked about our involvement in the niche Jewish online market, and even got into deeper philosophical issues, asking questions like "Is Judaism becoming too trendy?" and "Do these funny Jewish viral videos negatively affect the way people view Judaism?" (I hope not, because I'm trying to make a business out of it.)

Rabbi Yonah calls everyone into the concert

Comedian and fellow songwriter Eric Schwartz, a.k.a. Smooth E, honors the Jewish Robot with his own robot impression

Straight outta' Brooklyn, Rav Shmuel performs his hit song, Protocols

Sweet young Festival goers, Andrea and Flora, flanked by two guys whose names I can't remember if I ever knew

The haunting music of Israeli Grammy award-winning musician, my second surprise

After four days of festival, Heeb Magazine contributor and hardcore New Yorker David Kelsey was not nearly as enthusiastic as I was about finally getting to the beach in Santa Monica, for fear he might spontaneously combust in the sunlight (his clothes are SPF 1,000).

It was nice to see so many young Jewish adults come together and become friends, and I'm looking forward to participating in future events. Thanks again to the Jewlicious crew and especially Rabbi Yonah!

March 09, 2007

Jewish Robot at the Beach

Yesterday I arrived in Long Beach, California for the Jewlicious at the Beach Festivals, where I, along with many of my colleagues, will be speaking in salons and panels about being Jews in new media (I think ... I'm still not sure what I'll be talking about). As with my trips to Israel, once again I am traveling and rooming with fellow J-blogger and friend, Aryeh G. The good Rabbi Yonah Bookstein of Beach Hillel, founder and organizer for the event, arranged our flight and lodging and food and local transportation, and we are already indebted to his generosity. That's why Aryeh and I were more than willing to help decorate the JCC into the night.

Aryeh at the airport

Jewish Robot, having a ball

Aryeh helps make the JCC look nice, just by standing there

Blogging from the Alpert Jewish Community Center of Long Beach, where I got to blow the dust off my old Macboy skills and set up the Macintosh iMacs for the registration center.

More news and photos after the weekend, ShaBot Shalom!

March 07, 2007

lowercase SHUl

Besides producing cartoons and blogging here on the ShaBlog, I have another little project that, over the last two years, has evolved from a hobby into a mission. lowercase L is my blog dedicated to the inexplicable use of lowercase L's in otherwise uppercase words. Typically this has nothing to do with Judaism (or robots ... or Jewish robots), except for a loosely related Hezbollah entry last July. But this week's lowercase L entry, HATZOlAH comes straight from Young Israel of the West Side in Manhattan, where I've spent many a shabbat morning in the last few months. Admittedly, there is something wrong if I'm distracted from prayer and scoping out lowercase L's at shul. I should follow our Jewish tradition like everyone else, and scope out what's on the other side of the mekhitza.

Special thanks to Shana for inviting me to shul.

March 06, 2007

Manic Monday

L to R: Aryeh Goldsmith, Ariel Beery, Sara Schwimmer, Paul Berger, and Eli "No Website" Valley

Last night I gathered with the usual suspects at Mo Pitkins for Manic Monday, a joint event hosted by PresenTense Magazine and Save the Assistants. The after-work program, conceived by Lilit and Ariel, intends to combine the audiences of Jewish readers and overworked assistants for a monthly unwinding. I found it ironic that ninty percent of the folks who showed up were, like me, self-employed, and therefore could not relate to the daily strife of those Assistants who need Saving. Still, it's always good to get together with my unemployed friends.

DJ Wolinsky and Dave Schwimmer Marcus

Lilit, Assistant Saved

EV, New York blogger event king Andrew Krucoff, and Berger Boy

March 04, 2007

Sweet Purim Jam, Brooklyn Style

IYUUN Chabad of Carroll Gardens Annual Purim Jam!

With no concrete Purim plans, I wandered over to the BAM Café with my buddy Berger Boy, only to discover that the Hip-Hop Hafla Purim Party, part of the 2007 Steinhardt Jewish Heritage Festival, was already winding down. We waited for Ariel Beery to show up before jetting, and going with the flow, we followed a group of nomadic Jews over to the Chabad of Carroll Gardens a few blocks away.

When we arrived, I was surprised to find an oasis of music, food, and celebration in a part of Brooklyn that I've only passed through, never stopping to smell the roses. And to make things even more special, Hasidic hip-hop artist Matisyahu made a surprise appearance, and put on an impromptu performance. Even though I've poked fun at him in my Shabot comics, I had never seen Matisyahu perform before, so I lucked out when I just happened to be sitting right up front, about two feet away from him as he busted out with the beats.

Impromptu Matisyahu

Berger Boy caught the whole thing on film

Watch a clip of Matisyahu perform live at Chabad of Carroll Gardens

After his performance, I had an opportunity to introduce myself and talk with Matisyahu briefly, before the swarm of admiring frum gals flocked around him, maintaining a respectable distance, wishing they could jump his shomer negiyah bones.

Matisyahu and the Jewish Robot

Resident Engergy Conservationist Ami "Greener" Greener and sidekick Adam

Who let Super Mario in the house? Ariel Beery wears his Leading Up North work clothes so he can get down and dirty.

Jamming out the Chabad Melodies, Purim style

Hasidic Crown Heights native and fashion designer Levi Okunov and publicist Berel made it to the party

By the time this photo was taken, Paul could not tell the difference between "Cursed be Haman" and "Blessed be Mordecai". Though the next day, Berger Boy confessed he didn't know the difference before he got drunk, either

March 02, 2007

Grateful Yid Purim Bash

If you happen to be Brooklyn-bound this Purim weekend, come to Southpaw for the 3rd Annual Grateful Yid Purim Bash:

Sun. 3/4
Chabad of Prospect Heights presents the 3rd Annual Purim Bash
Join us for an incredible evening of celebration, music & L'Chiam!

4:00pm Megillah Reading
5:00pm Funk & Festivities! featuring
Y-Love feat. DJ Handler & Yoshie
with special guest Heedoosh
$15 adv./$15 d.o.s
3 pm doors
best Purim Costume takes grand prize -info. call 718-362-9213
Southpaw @ 125 5th Ave. Brooklyn, NY
Buy Tickets here