Re’eh: The Kansas City Apocalypse

By the time I was 40 I’d been through pretty much every sort of therapy available on planet Earth. There had been the obvious ones, like cognitive therapy, behavioral therapy and psychoanalysis. But my attempts at self-repair went deeper. I’d also done acceptance therapy, art therapy, group psychotherapy and even eye movement desensitization and reprocessing […]

Eikev: The General

The bunker is forty feet long and ten feet wide and strongly reinforced. It is a small, but important space. It is buried far beneath the earth, and it is dominated by a single long table. Above the table, a single fluorescent bulb burns. And at the head of the table stands a dark-skinned man. […]

The Work of our Hands

Dear readers, Everybody reading this column knows the history. As our ability to automate expanded exponentially there was a threshold that was reached. Instead of simply opening up new and less monotonous economic opportunities, all sorts of economic opportunities began to disappear. Instead of a wide variety of people involved in the production of goods […]

Vaetchanan: The Life of Charlie Barnes

The morning that changed my life started like all the others. I left the small apartment I shared with six other immigrants and made my way to work. The elevator down to the bottom floor of the building creaked as it always did. And as the door to building opened, I was greeted by the […]

Devarim: Coming of Age

Moses Hassan looked around as he walked slowly to the dais at the west end of the room. There was a good crowd here, nearly three hundred people. Moses wondered what the guests had thought of the party so far. Moses Hassan counted the rich and powerful of the City among his friends. When those […]

Mattot-Masei: The Freedom of Duomba

The street I’m on is made of individually laid bricks, like some fancy district in a Western capital. But this is no western capital. This is Duomba, the capital of the Republic of Garubia. And so – even on the nicest of streets – there is only a veneer of luxury; bricks are missing from […]

Pinchas: The Vision

I still remember the day the kid showed up. I worked on the forty-third floor of a San Francisco offices tower. In a city that admired flatness, bureaucratic and corporate, some industries still valued exclusivity. I was in one of those lines of work. I was a venture capitalist. Not just any venture capitalist though, […]

Balack: Voices

Mohammed glanced nervously around his father’s beautiful wood-lined library. There were thousands of books there, covering everything from Islamic law to military theory. And hanging from every available surface where and graphs he had scrawled out in fits of energy. There was nobody else in the room. Nonetheless, all around him, he could hear voices. […]

Understanding Circumcision (non-fiction)

I’ve been reading about efforts to ban Brit Milah (circumcision) in Scandinavian countries. There is enormous support for these initiatives and so, as a religious Jew, I felt it was important to explain *why* we do circumcision. I’m going to skip all the tradition-based, health-based, and religious-freedom-based arguments.   I’m going to skip to the […]

Chukat: Pete and the Felon

A kid? What the heck was a kid doing in here? I just stared at the boy in front of me, absolutely stunned by what I was seeing. Who in the heck would bring a kid to this place, much less expose him to me? I sat there, confused, while the kid looked around the […]