A Poem

February 22, 2010

                        Writing With Light

The true measure of a person’s quality is the extent to which he or she is able to contain vast amounts of light.

Once it enters into you, it transforms your soul.  If you let it.

And in doing so, it increases your capacity for the next influx of beams coming your way.

Ultimately, of course, you need to release some of it or else you’d burst.

So you shoot it out.

And in doing so, you set the stage for the next influx coming your way.

Does it matter where you direct it when you release it?

I suppose it must but haven’t figured out all of the specifics.

What’s clear to me, though, is that the level at which you perform these processes is the most accurate  calibration of how holy a life you’re living.

When you’re spraying forth some of that stored-up light, you’re writing with letters that are far more powerful than the black ones on a printed page.

 Why write with ink when you can write with light?

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Meet Matchmaker/Attorney Leora Hoffman

February 22, 2010

I would like to introduce you to one of the most scintillating Jewish women in the Washington area.

Her name is Leora Hoffman.  She’s an attorney, and she doesn’t just glow, she sizzles.

Her stunning mane of curly red hair seems more likely to be gracing a fashion-show catwalk than the courtrooms of Washington. 

Without even trying, she brings a fashionable flair to her work as a prosecutor in the child protection section of the D.C. attorney general’s office.  It’s her job to try to bring nightmares to an end for abused and neglected children.  But in her spare time she has a calling in which her goal is essentially the opposite — she’s a matchmaker trying to make the dreams of her clients come true.

 She’s a civil prosecutor, rather than a criminal one — so that when she wins a case, the person faces the loss of parental rights rather than the prospect of incarceration.  At any given time, she’s likely to be juggling 60 or so cases at various stages of litigation.

Her brain also gets a good workout in her matchmaking, since she’s always keeping track of the romantic progress of hundreds of clients.  The fees they pay range from $500 to $7,500, depending upon which service options are selected.

When determining who to match up with whom, she has three kinds of information percolating through her head.  First of all, there are the written responses that each client gives to a fairly detailed questionnaire that covers issues ranging from one’s pattern of alcohol consumption to what qualities are being sought in the opposite sex.

Then there’s an ongoing series of meetings and phone conversations.  “I’m always talking with them,” she says.

Also coming into play:  her hunches.  Having been the catalyst of 64 marriages so far, there’s no doubt that they sometimes can be golden.

What’s the key to her success?

“I look at the whole person, and try to figure out what they’re looking for,” she says.  “I know how love operates,” she adds.  “I’m one of the old dinosaurs.”

Her good heart and her commitment to tikkun olam (the effort to heal the world) are likely the products of having attended a yeshiva on Long Island during her formative years.  She’s a shining example of someone who’s working to make the world not only a better place — but a happier and more romantically fulfilling one as well.

For more information, visit LeoraHoffman.com or call 301-537-5266

Welcome to DC Jewish Style

February 22, 2010

“DC Jewish Style” is an online magazine covering Jewish life in the Washington, D.C. area.

Art, fashion, jewelry, lifestyle, personalities, real estate, current affairs, and local Jewish history — these are some of the topics covered.

The writer is Murray White.  You may contact him at murraywhite@hotmail.com.

Some Info About Him

He has been a member of the Washington-area Jewish community since he was an infant.  He had his Bar Mitzvah at Tiffereth Israel Congregation.

He attended Shepherd Elementary School in the District, followed by three exciting years at Montgomery County, Md.’s Kensington Junior High School, where he was elected president of the student council, ran the quarter-mile in under a minute, and fortunately learned the hollowness of being popular just for the sake of being popular.

He graduated in 1972 from Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School, where he wrote for the school newspaper and appeared on the TV quiz show “It’s Academic.”

He graduated from Oberlin College in Ohio with a history degree and then attended graduate school in art history at the University of Chicago, which was followed by an internship at the Smithsonian Institution.

He is a freelance journalist whose articles (mostly about the art world) have appeared in such publications as The New Yorker, the Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, London Times, Baltimore Sun, Legal Times, and Washington Jewish Week.

He has served as a paid consultant to ABC News in Washington, and his television appearances include conducting a live, 25-minute tour on C-SPAN of an exhibition of ancient Greek jewelry on Capitol Hill.