This marks the 100th issue
since our last milestone issue of #5000. Happy Thanksgiving
and Chanukah greetings to our US and Jewish readers. I hope
that none of you were affected by the various shootings,
stabbings and assaults that occurred throughout the US at
Black Friday retail events.
This 1985 performance byWhoopi
Goldbergmight have been
one of the first "one-woman shows" to have been performed on
one of Broadway's main stages. In this production, she
portrays several different characters: a drug dealer named
Fontaine who has her world view rocked by a visit to the Anne
Frank Museum; an apparently vapid Valley Girl whose waters run
deeper than they first appear; a woman with a severe physical
disability who finds love and a sexual partner; and a young
black girl with a painful yearning to look like a Caucasian
girl with long, straight blonde hair.
By inviting us into the souls and minds of
these disparate characters, we learn of a commonality to our
human experience that we might not have previously
acknowledged. It's fun to imagine experiencing this show
nearly 30 years ago, too.
I've also always been
totally tickled by Goldberg's stage name. Born Caryn
Johnson, she apparently she chose the name "Whoopi Goldberg"
because she was told that "Johnson" wasn't a Jewish-enough
name for show business.
Fair warning: this
video does contain a fair bit of swearing and other explicit
language. It's what the kids would call NSFW (Not Safe For
On a slightly related
note, a Florida school made the news this week when it
threatened a 12-year-old African-American girl with
expulsion if she didn't tame her natural Afro. An initial
read of the story reveals that the school is citing concerns
about the transmission of lice, although sadly, I strongly
suspect the decision has some sort of racist underpinning.