Sunday, December 11, 2005

The Blind Date

I was supposed to be in Southern California for Shabbat, but we got a reprieve on Thursday evening when it appeared that we'd finish up early and be able to get to LA before the horrendous highway 405 rush hour (which starts at 1 and ends way after shabbat starts).

Normally, I have plenty of time to arrange for places to eat for shabbat, but I don't like calling people last minute to invite myself over. Granted, in Israel we never have a problem with it, and we love company, but I feel awkward as a guest doing it to other people.

Let alone people I don't know.
A fellow blogger, who I never met in my life, invited me for a shabbat meal at the beginning of the week but I unfortunately had to turn him down since I didn't think I'd be in LA for shabbat. Yet, the email conversation we had was nice enough, his blogging was totally obvious to me that he was shomer shabbat, so I decided to ask him if I could for him for a meal.

My brother IM'd me on Friday that it sounded to him like a blind date. That was pretty funny, since I'm married for a while, and hadn't even thought about the concept of blind dates in ages.

Needless to say, we met in shul. I don't think I had the nervous butterflies in my stomach like the blind dates from years ago, but I'm sure we each had some minor apprehensions. After all, how "normal" could somebody be, if his name is Jameel, blogging from the Muqata? And who invites someone to a shabbat meal, named Jameel, site unseen?

His family was extremely gracious, and I hope that they enjoyed my company, as much as I did spending time with them. The meal was wonderful, the table Torah talk was fulfilling, and it was wonderful being in a family shabbat atmosphere.

Only a very small minority of bloggers say who they are up front, and the first bloggers that come to mind are Soccer Dad, Treppenwitz, and Serandez. Many crave their privacy, for a multitude of reasons -- freedom of blogging and expression which may be wild and unrestrained as an anonymous name, worry that exposure would harm a distant relative, worry that a close relative or neighbor might find out and not approve or the editorial content, worry that a co-worker or manager may find out.

For example, if DovBear were the son of a Rosh Yeshiva in Lakewood, it would be very understandable why he wants to keep his name out of lights. (DovBear: I apologize in advance, I really have no clue who you are.)

At the end of the day, I have a real sense of satisfaction having met a few bloggers in real life.

Those that I've met so far are very special people, and I feel privlidged to have met them.

Chardal, you're always welcome to come to the Muqata for shabbat, even last minute.

I had a great time!




Ze'ev said...

Jameel - so you really think I'm special? I'm touched.

Ezzie said...

Chardal lives in LA?! Who knew!? (Um, make sure he doesn't care about that...)

I'm flattered at the mention, and find it ironic that two of the three you mention, Soccer Dad and I, have actually met. In fact, he's the only blogger I've met face to face.

Glad it all worked out, you're always welcome here!

Mar Gavriel said...

Wow, you're playing Steg's "Checklist, checklist!" game.

Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...


Just remember, i got the term from the RenReb.

chardal said...

Ezzie, I am only here until next summer B"H.

Tovya @ Zion Report said...

yeah, i prefer at least some level of secrecy behind my blogging strictly because of my job and future aliyah plans. i've already been threatened with an "aliyah banning" because of being too open in the past, so i prefer to avoid that if at all possible.

we live a world where it's only acceptable to tell the truth if people feel comfortable with the truth that they will hear.

such is life.

Lab Rab said...

What a wonderful story, Chardal and Jameel. Thanks for sharing.

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

MG & Steg: Whats the checklist game? Where is the link to it?

Ezzie: I'll put my money on chardal that he'll be in Israel soon enough.

LabRab: I had a great time...couldn't have asked for a nicer shabbat meal.

BTW: I'm blogging from the plane. GH may have a learjet, but Air Muqata One's got the access.


"even last minute."
Funny you should say that i just bought a ticket for a flight to israel tonight last minute.

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Amshi - are you the on the plane with me now?

I'm the guy in upstairs business class with a kafiyya.

Litvshe said...

What...meeting my father in shul doesn't get a mention?

Search the Muqata


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