Adventures in Journalism

As a few commenters recently discovered via the print or online editions, Jpost recently published a profile of me in their Friday paper a week or so ago. Every week or so, they have an “Arrivals” column profiling an oleh chadash or vatik (new or experienced immigrant….how to translate “vatik”? Veteran? Alumnus? Fried chicken warrior? So when I was in 12th grade or so, my friend David and I went to this improv comedy club in Dallas called Ad-libs where they would do Whose Line Is It Anyway?-type games. We would have fun throwing out ideas which weren’t the run-of-the-mill suggestions because most audience members lack the ability to come up with anything that’s not R-rated.

Host: “I need an emotion.”
Guest: “HORNY!”

Nice job. Is that even an emotion?

Five minutes later…

Host: “Ok, now I need a 18th century British poet.”
Guest: “SEX!”

This one time they ask for an occupation and within 0.7 seconds, David immediately screams into silence “FRIED CHICKEN WARRIOR!” To their credit, they took the suggestion. The next night as the story goes, the troupe is performing at his university (he was doing a special high school/university program at the same time) and he screams it out again at which point one of the players says, “hey, you were at our show last night! I always think about that.)

Where were we? Anyway, a couple of months ago, I had lunch with a free-lance writer working for the Post as we chatted about my life. Here is the result. For some reason, the picture isn’t displaying and ayn li koach (I don’t have energy) to write them about it again after already being in communication a couple of times. A few things:

He says one of his favorite hobbies is humous eating. A proud member of a humous club, which he quickly clarifies is strictly amateur and not professional, he says the unstated goal of the group is to eat their way through this country one chickpea at a time. “We’re not sponsored yet,” he says with another beaming smile. He lists other hobbies as pretending to closely follow American sports teams, dating and laughing at Israel with fellow olim.

Yes, I am in a chumus club and we take our eating very seriously. I’ve been wrong before but I really don’t remember saying one of my hobbies was dating. I also can’t recall even a single time I’ve laughed at Israel with fellow olim. And if you believe that sentence, I have a bridge in Tehran I’d be happy to sell you.

If you can tolerate the wack-jobs in power, this place is really quite pleasant in the autumn. (Ech omrim “wack-job”?)

It was during one of our club meetings where I read the column for the first time, and I must say, I almost died from laughter. Here’s an excerpt:

Lovitt shares a cozy, two-bedroom apartment in central
Tel Aviv
near Kikar Rabin with a woman he found on the popular website homeless.co.il.

Wait…here’s how the story reads in the print copy.

Lovitt shares a cozy, two-bedroom apartment in central
Tel Aviv near Kikar Rabin with a woman he found homeless.

Upon reading it, I thought “who looks like the biggest freak here: Me? The journalist? Or my poor roommate who looks like a hobo?” What can ya do….just have to laugh and move on.

I was about to paste a picture of a homeless woman until I felt bad. Instead I’ll use a picture of Mickey Mouse, because who doesn’t smile at the sight of Mickey Mouse? Although if Walt was going to make the effort of giving him pants, why not a shirt? Call me crazy but I find the sight of a half-naked rodent a little disturbing for my tastes. Next time I see a mouse scamper across my kitchen floor wearing only pants, I’m outta there. Not even packing a bag.

Also, as you may remember, my employer is the Israel Experience, a company within the Jewish Agency who plans, among many other trips, Birthright Israel programs. So I don’t actually work for Birthright although I don’t expect most readers to recognize the distinction (Birthright raises the money and sets the standards which all tour operators must meet.) I sent an email to have a few of the mistakes corrected although the issue with the picture remains. Oh well…it’s not keeping me up at night.


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