After watching Okja, did you become a vegan?

Sodom and Gomorrah on the Hudson. That is how many characterize New York City, but this ignores that a large group of New Yorkers, including me, are devout followers of religion because we park our cars on New York City streets. New York rules prevent us from parking at particular places during particular times of the week so that street sweepers can clean to the curb. (I know that tourists find it amazing that our litter-filled streets are swept, but they are.) Thus, in front of my house, I cannot park on one side of the street from 11:30 A.M. to 1 P.M. on Mondays, and on Tuesdays I can’t park during those hours on the other side of the street. If I park on the wrong side of the street at those times, I WILL get a ticket. It’s irritating, but the streets do get swept. However, there are many regularly-scheduled suspensions of these “alternate-side-of-the-street- parking restrictions”—about forty per year. (Emergencies such as snowstorms also bring additional suspensions.) Many of the scheduled suspensions are for secular holidays—Memorial Day, Thanksgiving, etc.—but the majority are for religious observances. As certain religions gain more adherents in New York, and hence more political power, alternate-side suspensions increase to recognize their religious holidays and festivals. (Politics gets played out in all sorts of ways in New York City.) Jewish and Christian holidays have been recognized for years, but not too long ago some Hindu and Islamic holy days were added thereby increasing the number of days on which I do not have to worry about being illegally parked. It may sound odd, but I don’t believe that I am the only car parker who says, “Thank all the gods for religion!”

Could this story be true? When Marilyn Monroe was married to Arthur Miller, his mother regularly made matzo ball soup for the couple. After the tenth time, Marilyn said, “Gee, Arthur, these matzo balls are pretty nice, but isn’t there any other part of the matzo you can eat?”

Is Jules Feiffer’s thought appropriate for Easter? He said, “Christ died for our sins. Dare we make his martyrdom meaningless by not committing them?”

“To many people virtue consists chiefly in repenting faults, not in avoiding them.” Lichtenberg.

“It is much easier to repent of sins that we have committed than to repent of those we intend to commit.” Josh Billings.

March 14 has now become pi day. Some people learn hundreds or thousands of the numerals of pi, but as Jordan Ellenberg points out in How Not to Be Wrong: The Power of Mathematical Thinking, while pi itself is interesting, knowing more of those digits does not make it more interesting. He continues that knowing the coordinates of the Eiffel Tower with increasing exactitude does not tell you anything valuable about the Eiffel Tower.

As St. Patrick’s Day approaches, I wonder if the old joke, with some truth in it, is now politically incorrect: What’s the Irish version of a queer? Answer: Someone who prefers women to liquor.

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