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CHELM-ON-THE-MED©, MARCH 2017 COLUMN 2
MIDNIGHT EXPRESS A LA ISRAEL
When passengers on the 11:07 PM commuter train from Tel Aviv to Beersheva got off at the Ben-Gurion University station at 25 minutes after midnight, they found themselves marooned on Platform 3. Employees claimed they ‘knew the last train was scheduled to arrive’ but mistakenly someone lost track and locked the wrong passageway under the tracks in the course of locking up the station for the night… (ynet.com) Photo credit: Israel Railways
* Railroaded passengers were liberated fifteen nerve-racking minutes later. After yelling at the top of their lungs for help didn’t help, one of the commuters who chose to risk life and limb by jumping off the platform to cross the tracks and mount the platform on the station side ‘found’ an employee with the key. The railroad said they were investigating the incident.
Tel-Aviv has initiated a new way to deter dog owners who fail to pick up their pet’s poop on the streets – not only raising fines from 475 NIS ($125) to 730 NIS ($192). Offenders caught walking their dog without a ‘doggy bag’ are offered an alternative: spending four hours working for the municipal veterinarian at the city pound…cleaning up the poop of other dogs, one hopes. (Yediot)
FACE THE MUSIC!
In an attempt to attract health-conscious consumers, Israel’s date growers launched a campaign lauding dates as a preservative-free trans-free alternative to popular cream-filled wafers (called ‘waffles’ in Hebrew). The online video clip dubbed ‘Trans Party’ hinted that celebrants were wolfing down trans-fat filled vaffelim...
The campaign had to be scratched after one of Israel’s biggest wafer producers (Manamin, founded 1950) threatened to sue if the misleading pitch wasn’t ditched, saying they’d ditched trans-fats* 15 years ago, and the advertisement had unfairly eaten into their sales (Yediot) Photo credit: Manamin website
* What about the sugar content? Manamin remained mum.
TRIAL BY FIRE
Another glimpse of the inscrutable nature of the Palestinian mindset: Gaza barber Ramadan Edwan has launched a new method of hair-cutting and blow-dry styling that he says he developed “to accommodate to the Palestinian culture and nature”: applying a blowtorch to his clients’ heads in lieu of a hair dryer.
The method, hints the barber, can force even the most difficult hair into submission “allowing the hair to become smooth, soft and much easier to comb.” It also nourishes the hair, strengthens its roots and expands hair follicles and protects hair oils, he claims. Ramadan Edwan added that the style-by-fire treatment also “activates blood circulation” (sparked, perhaps, by a hefty shot of adrenalin and an elevated heart rate among his customers)… (nana10.co.il and kikar.co.il)Photo credit: Screenshot from Ruptly Video News
After the Ministry of Internal Security dreamed up the tactic of cutting service to phones listed on business cards for sex services to prevent them being scattered all over the sidewalks*, a similar ‘tactic’ is going into effect in Israel to cut motivation to steal expensive smartphones from their owners: The Ministry of Communications and the Israel Police Force will be requiring cell phone companies to install a ‘command’ that when activated at customer request, will not only remotely cut service to the victim’s number; even inserting a new SIM card won’t work, ensuring such petty criminals won’t enjoy the fruits of their sticky fingers… (Israel HaYom) Photo credit: bing.com – Creative Commons
* see Is Their Number Up?
EASY AS CAKE
An Israeli industrial designer named Mechanik has come up with an instant ‘just add eggs and oil’ cake mix called UgaUga that can be dumped into a rice cooker to produce a first class ‘western’ birthday cake in 20 minutes flat.
Why a rice cooker?
The mix is designed for the Chinese market* where ovens are rare…and comes with birthday decorations included. (Yediot) Photo credit: ‘One satisfied customer’ from the UgaUga website
* China has 16 million births a year.
Zeev (formerly Vadim) Kreitman (37) and his wife Margareta (27) were married in Odessa in a civil ceremony in 2008; two years later, Zeev (who’d made aliyah in the mid-1990s then went back to the Ukraine after his military service in the IDF) returned to Israel with his new bride and small son in tow. When the two decided to tie the knot again in early 2017 – this time in a Jewish ceremony after Margareta (now Rivka) converted to Judaism, the venue of their second nuptials was a bit out-of-the-box: Their young son Yaakov’s 2nd grade classroom in Upper Nazareth. (Israel HaYom, Hidabroot.org) Photo credit: Hidabroot