Thursday, August 30, 2012

Key Questions for Content Marketing

I draw on my experience as Executive Editor of Kallah Magazine in my guest post for Level343.com.  I explain what to expect from content marketing and the questions to go through to be sure it is as effective as possible.

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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Women's olam habah

Divrei Chaim: women's share in the reward for talmud torah: 1) In the daf hayomi for this past shabbos (Brachos 17) the gemara writes that women are promised more reward than men in olam ha'bah for th...[see the rest by following the link]

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Trashing the dress: a bad idea all around

See http://www.examiner.com/article/trashing-the-dress-tragedy

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Friday, August 24, 2012

Shidduch dating tips

This is not my list. This is what Saw You at Sinai posted for girls. It's posted at http://news.yahoo.com/jewish-dating-sawyouatsinai-provides-female-dating-tips-create-160235424.html I checked but couldn't find a parallel list for boys.

If I were giving the advice, I''d keep it much simpler: Be a mensch. As Hillel told the prospective convert who wanted to know all of Torah on one foot -- what is hateful to you, don't do to another.(see http://kallahmagazine.blogspot.com/2012/02/all-you-need-is.html) The rest is all commentary. The same holds true in this case. For example, isn't it obvious, if a guy gives you options, that he wants you to respond with what you would prefer?
Anyway here's the list of tips.

Preparing for the Date:
  •     If the male has called twice with no response and left a voicemail, then at that point the female should be courteous, and either return the call, or text the male to let them know when they will be available to speak.
  •     If the male suggests a few options of where to go or what to do on the date, then it would be appreciated if the female gives her preference. This will lead to a more relaxed and enjoyable date. If there is an activity, or a type of food/restaurant that the female does not like, that could also be mentioned.
During the Dating:
  •     When out on the date, make sure to say thank you. Whether the male held open the door, dropped you off at home after the date, paid for the date etc, men really notice when someone shows appreciation and it makes a huge impact. This simple courtesy speaks volumes about a person’s character.
  •     Offering to pay for part of the date, even if the man has no intention of letting the woman pay, is still acknowledged and appreciated nonetheless.
  •     If you are quiet/shy, it is important to make a concerted effort to participate in the conversation, so that it is not awkward on the male, and pressure for them to continue speaking throughout.
  •     Feedback has shown that women who tell their date that they are last of their friends to get married is a big turn off. The man can interpret this as the meaning that the woman is desperate.
  •     For either party to discuss any former relationships/dates early on in the relationship is very off putting to the other person.
  •     If you know you are going to close the match, do not state that you’ve had such a wonderful time and would like to see the match again. This is misleading and gives the other person a false hope. This is a mistake that has been done by both males and females. Rather express thanks for the person’s time or say you would like to think about it, so you come across appreciative but still genuine.
After The Date:
  •     Please be in touch with the matchmaker (or match directly) within 1-2 days to let them know if you wish to continue dating that person or not. It is unfair to leave the person waiting.
  •     Even if you realize that the person is not for you, please think about whether they would be good for a friend of yours. This is a fantastic attitude for everyone to have.
These tips have been helping members to make the dating experience a positive and effective one.



For an index to other very useful articles, see http://kallahmagazine.weebly.com/ and like it on Facebook. You can also follow on Twitter

the laws of shadchanus

NOTE: I am merely transcribing and commenting. I am not offering any halachic opinion here. I would appreciate hearing from those of you who have actual experience either as the payer or payee in the situation of shidduchim. I'm particularly interested to know if the shadcahn was still paid in full if the shidduch was broken off -- particularly if the full fee depends on both parties when one of them is the one who decided to cut it off.


Saw You at Sinai offers some guideline with footnotes that reference halachic sources on http://www.sawyouatsinai.com/laws-of-matchmaking.aspx

On the top of the page is:  LAWS OF MATCHMAKING
Q. A common question that is asked to the SYAS office- What is the going rate that one should pay to a matchmaker if they successfully match you with your spouse (regardless if this is a friend, relative or volunteer matchmaker)?
The current rate is approximately $2,000 per couple. The actual amount though should be discussed between the singles and their Rabbi.

The halachic folow up on this is a bit below:
Question: Is there a set amount of money that one must pay a shadchan?
Discussion: The amount to be paid to the shadchan is based on the customary local fee.[33] Once the standard fee is agreed upon, the shadchan may not ask for additional compensation to cover special expenses that he may have incurred in arranging the shidduch.
        Our custom is to pay the shadchan immediately after the shidduch is completed.[34] Even if theshidduch is broken later, the shadchan does not have to return his fee[35] as long as he did not give erroneous information which led to the termination of the shidduch.[36]
[33]         Pischei Teshuvah, E.H. 50:16. If there is no clear custom as to the amount a shadchan receives, a ravshould be consulted.
[34]         Aruch ha-Shulchan, E.H. 50:42; Beis Yitzchak 1:115; Halichos Yisrael 4; Pischei Choshen, sechirus, pg. 337. When a shadchan does not get paid on time, the Biblical prohibition of delayed payment (bal talin) may apply; see Halichos Yisrael 1-2. See also Yismach Lev, vol. 1, pg. 23, quoting Rav C. Kanievsky
[35]         Aruch ha-Shulchan, E.H. 50:42. But in a locality where the shadchan is customarily paid after the wedding, and the couple in question do not get married, the shadchan does not have to be paid; see Chut Shani, Shabbos, vol. 3, pg. 243.
[36]         Levushei Mordechai C.M. 15, quoted in Pischei Choshen, ibid. See Halichos Yisrael 11, who discusses whether the shadchan should be paid if the shidduch was broken because of information of which the shadchanwas unaware.

                                ------------------------------
Now: appealing as the idea is to split the shadchan's fee equally, I get the impression that such is not the common practice among professional shadchanim who tend to charge the young woman's side of the family 100% of the fee or even a few thousand upfront just to take the time to enter her into their data banks. Those of you in the parsha, as they say, have you found it to be so?


Related post: http://kallahmagazine.blogspot.com/2012/08/shidduch-dating-tips.html

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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

A good choice for a NY day trip

You can also plan on it for Chol Hamoed Sukkoth (it would not have yet opened for the season for Pesach) I just wouldn't advise taking children along. There are some age restrictions, a lack of stroller access, and most would find the tours too long.
http://www.examiner.com/review/visiting-kykuit

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Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Bechira and anochi

from http://divreichaim.blogspot.com/2012/08/hakol-bydei-shamayim-chutz-myirah-free.html 
I can't resist posting an amazing vort of the Oheiv Yisrael, R' Avraham Yehoshua Heschel, on Parshas Toldos.  Rikva felt kicking in her womb when she passed houses of avodah zarah worship; she felt kicking in her womb when she passed the beis medrash. She says, "Lamah zeh anochi?" and goes to seek the advice of a Navi.  What troubled Rikva so much? The Oheiv Yisrael writes that Rikva thought she had one child in her womb.  Every person, even a child, has to make certain choices.  One person may choose to follow his heart to a house of avodah zarah; another person may choose to follow his heart into the beis medrash -- but we each must choose.  Bechira chofshis is not just about how we behave -- it's about how we define ourselves, our sense of identity, our sense of self.  Bechira is not about what you do -- it's about who you are.  When Rivka felt what she thought was the same child kicking for both the beis medrash and the beis avodah zarah, she thought this child could not choose a path; she though this baby had no identity, no sense of self.   "Lamah zeh Anochi?" -- "Where is the sense of 'I' that defines who this child is?"  

The gift of bechira means that we are afforded the opportunity to define just who the "I" inside each of us is. Let's hope we choose wisely. 



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Sunday, August 12, 2012

Not all who do evil are plotting to take over the world

This morning, I was thinking about what I found so upsetting about people who neglect their responsibilities, ignore their deadlines, and fail to pay attention to the duties of their position. Then I remembered some key books that hit on the crux of the issue.

Dickens creates an unforgettable portrait of that type of evil in Bleak House.Harold Skimpole plays the role of the helpless infant who must depend on others because he just can't be responsible. Jarndyce acts generously with him because he sees him as helpless. But Dickens points out that the pose of helplessness itself is manipulative, and Skimpole is quite capable when it comes to scheming.
continue reading at http://uncommoncontent.blogspot.com/2012/08/its-easy-to-be-evil.html

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Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Tu B'av is this Friday: here's some background info

what-we-celebrate-on-the-15th-of-av-part-1-of-3
hat-we-celebrate-on-the-15th-of-av-part-2-of-3
what-we-celebrate-on-the-15th-of-av-part-3-of-3

For more in depth analysis of the text describing what the young women did and said, see the links at http://kallahmagazine.blogspot.com/2009/08/thoughts-on-tu-bav.html



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