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May 22, 2009     Heritage Florida Jewish News
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May 22, 2009

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HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, MAY 22, 2009 PAGE 9A By Gloria YoushamCall 407-657-9405 or 407-834-8787 Oy vay, scary times, right?... My spouse didn't need another reason not to eat out! The economy is supposed to turn around soon. I hope it does in my lifetime! This comes directly from the Internet: Retail sales fell for a second straight month in April, a disappointing performance that raised doubts about whether consumers were regaining their desire to shop. A rebound in consumer demand is a necessary ingredient for ending the recession. The Commerce Department said last Wednesday [May 6] that retail sales fell 0.4 percent last month. Many economists had expected a fiat reading, and the April weakness followed a 1.3 percent drop in March that was worse than first estimated. Retail sales had posted gains in January and February after falling for six straight months, raising hopes that the all-important consumer sector of the economy might be stabilizing. But the setbacks in March and April could darken some forecasts because consumer spending accounts for about 70 percent of economic activity. The hope had been that consumers were starting to feel better about spending, helped by the start of tax breaks included in the $787 billion stimulus bill. Households had spent the fall hunkered down in the face of thousands of job layoffs and the worst financial crisis since the 1930s. The latest retail data "are yet another illustration that, although the worst is now over, there is still no evidence of an actual recovery," Paul Dales, U.S. economist with Capital Economics in Toronto, wrote in a research note. [When my stimulus check for $250 comes in, I will go on a wild binge and buy something...maybe a Starbucks coffee!] Never again?... I hate to be the one to bring such disturbing news but I think you knew that anti-Semitism was flourishing there. A recent poll of seven core European Union countries finds that nearly one third of Europeans hold Jews responsible for global economic woes and that even more believe that Jews wield too much control over the business world. The survey focused on 500 respondents each in Austria, the United King- dom, France, Germany, Hungary, Poland and Spain. In light ofneo-Nazi rallies and the rising numbers and feroc- ity of assaults on Jews and their houses of worship across the continent, the European Jewish Congress is urging Europe's leaders to take an unequivocally firm stand against ant- Semitic rhetoric and violence. (I, for one, can see the handwriting on the wail.., threatening language, boycotts against Jewish owned business and violent attacks. Isn't that how the Holocaust started?) Now for something pleasant... A joke can change the subject. Talk about harmony: A rabbi and a minister decided to buy a new car together. The day after they bought it, the rabbi found the minister driving it. The minister explained that he had just gone to the carwash because, in his religion, it is customary to welcome a new member with the rite of baptism. The next day, the minister discovered the rabbi cutting the end off the tailpipe. I received an e-mail from JOY WINTER... It was about her amazing dad, IRVING JACOBSON. "It was his 99th birth- day party (yes, you read right...99th!) and we had over 50 people Irving Jacobson here at the house....His 'baby sister' LILLY (95) came up from Miami with her daughter ANITA. Daddy's youngest sister DORSHEN lives in Israel with her family and her daughter RUTHEY surprised Daddy and came to the party. Ruthey was visiting the States and drove up with Aunt Lilly and Anita. What awonderful surprise it was. She presented Daddy with a video that she made of Aunt Dorshen wishing Daddy a happy birthday and showing him around her apartment pointing out presents he and my mama had given her through the years. It was amazing! We ended the evening as we always do sitting around the fire pit telling stories. Daddy didn't say good night until la.mY (Wow, Irving. I think you look much younger than your age. You are amazing!) Talk about being proud... We in the Jewish community and the United States as a whole, can be proud of ROBIN FEUERMAN. Robin is the 19-year-old daughter of CAROL and MARC FEUERMAN of Longwood. She is the youngest of five children, SCOTT, MATTHEW, RYAN and LAUREN. They, and her parents, are very proud of her indeed! Robin is an Olympic weightlifter. She just completed her first year of study at Northern Michigan University and is a member of the United States Olympic Education Center weightlifting team. She recently placed first overall at the U.S.A. Junior National Robin Feuerman Championships and qualifies to represent the United States at the Junior World Championships in Romania this coming summer. Competing at the world level has always been a dream for Robin. She says, "Having been a competitive weightlifter for five years, attending Worlds will put me on a track to represent the USA in the 2016 Olympics." (You can bet I will be rooting for you, Robin!) I saw 'Jersey Boys...' You have only a few more chances to see this phenomenal musical at the Bob Carr Performing Arts Centre, Orlando. It is the story of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons. You will love the true story, the music and the overall performances. We gave it so many standing ovations that my feet hurt more than my tuchas! Don't miss this one! Phone 800-982-2787 for tickets, if you can still find some. Good luck! One for the road... Speaking of the economy and jobs: David has done well for himself and is mayor of a small town in Israel. One day, David and his wife Andrea are walking past a construction site. Suddenly, one of the construction workers stops and calls out, "What's new, Andrea?" "Why, it's nice to see you again Avi," Andrea replies. She turns to introduce David to the construction worker, and they speak for several minutes. After David and Andrea continue on, he turns to her and asks how she knows Avi. "Oh," Andrea said. "We went to the same high school. I even thought about marrying him." David began to laugh. "You don't realize how lucky you are. If I hadn't come along, today you would be the wife of a construction worker!" Andrea replied without hesitation, "Not really. If I had mar- ried him, he'd now be a mayor!" 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