Oy Bay!

"My heart is in the east, and I in the uttermost west." — Yehudah Ha-Levi

Jewlicious Festival, in Progress

Posted by Oyster on March 1, 2008

Here’s some fresh Oyser comin’ at-cha. Pumped from  a kick-ass Havdalah & stand-up comedy show double-feature. Wow, so much to say. I’m just gonna get jiggy with the bullet-points:

  • Got to the JCC at 6 AM, Friday (!!!)
  • Davened Shakharit
  • Went to Huntington Beach
  • Registered for Festival, picked up my beloved “Che Herzl” shirt!
  • Running into old & new friends, lovin’ it!
  • Kabbalat Shabbat, dancing & singing & bearded rabbi-compliant. 🙂
  • Presenter Panel on “Judaism: Who cares?!” My impression: I want to read Gonzo Judaism, even though I’m not sure I agree with everything the Good Rabbi said (where was his kippah?!).
  • Sleep, sweet sleep. I was up for ~24 hours at this point.
  • Wake up in my sweet suite, shake a leg for breakfast & davenin’
  • Rabbi Leibish leads one mean service, with beautiful singing. I share the Xerox’ed Parasha HaSh’vua with Rav Shmuel!
  • Three back-to-back panels:
  • First one on  Jewish media. I’m a bit miffed that I wasn’t invited, but I guess I’m still a small fish, even if I’m a fish. :-p Was very interesting to hear people talk about the ways that various people are ditching books, yet making blogs a key component of online marketing strategy.
  • Second one was about the Indie Minyan movement. I asked a killer question on why so many of them are Carlebachi (to some degree). I’m very curious to check out the Happy Minyan in LA (Mission Minyan Minions, take note). I also point out that the increased degree of Indie Minyans isn’t so much a weird new thing, threatening the denominational Jewish establishment, as much as it’s a return to the days where no handful of Jewish organizations had a monopoly on Jewish religious communal expression. We’re takin’ it back to the shteibl!
  • Third one was on Jewish activism. I was surprised to hear Reboot describe itself as an incubator. A very exclusive, “don’t call us, we’ll call you” incubator, perhaps. 🙂 Elias from CLI was there, and talkin’ the good talk. Eli challah’ed back for social justice. And there was this woman who made it sound like she was saying that the big bad Israelis stole the Bedouin’s advanced civilization, and gave them rugs & camels. Some more context would have gone far for her to endear her cause to me.
  • Other than that, we’ve been on a steady diet of a kosher Jewish festive meal every 3 hours. It’s really ridiculous!

Oh, and I’ve been kvelling over the fact that, two short years after Oy Bay being started here, I’m not only organizing a bus down here, but even bringing three of our writers down there! Yep, ChallahBackGirl, Kneidalach, and (the blogger formally known as) WhiteFroDude are running around in this OTH (off the hook, for the non hep cats in the audience) Jewish fairyland. That gives me an idea. Oy Bay group picture time!

Shavuah tov!

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4 Responses to “Jewlicious Festival, in Progress”

  1. Friar Yid said

    J 4.0 sounds like fun. Maybe next year I’ll hop on the bus too!

    I can loan you my copy of Gonzo if you want. It started out interesting, but I’ll be honest, I got bored. I like Goldstein’s “go kick ass and don’t apologize” ethic, but some of his ideas aren’t necessarily where I’m interested in going (like Jew-camping, or reinventing mostly-forgotten esoteric ceremonies).

  2. jewlicious said

    Dude! I wasn’t even on the panel! All I did was moderate it. I know you have lots to say. Don’t take offense tho. I suspect that next year you may be too important to even wanna talk to stupid ol’ us… but I think what you’re saying is that you had a great time. For my part it was awesome seeing you there and I am only sad that I didn’t get to just hang out…

  3. […] NOTE from ck: Hey! You missed the Forwards Bintel Blog piece that featured Matisyahu’s haircut! Also the Jerusalem Post story you quoted originated in the JTA with a pic by… me! It was on the front page of the JTA blog yesterday and will be presumably picked up by many other Jewspapers. Monica over at the Jewspot must have taped the entire show because she has a full transcript of the Q&A session. I’m sure there’s more coming and we appreciate the Matisyahu-generated press but really the stuff I like the best is posts that mention the entire fest and what that was like – like the awesome coverage provided by Oy-Bay here and here. […]

  4. […] we’re in the Bay Area, let’s drop in at OyBay, where Tomer Altman (2007) is waxing rhapsodic about the recent Jewlicious Festival in Long Beach, CA. The event also saw a reunion of sorts, with […]

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