Volume 26 Number 75
                      Produced: Wed Jul  2  7:18:41 1997

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Ballgames and squatters (3)
         [Merril Weiner, Akiva Miller, Binyomin Segal]
Baseball Seating
         [Carl Singer]
Bat Cohen and Challah
         [Carolyn Lanzkron]
Bicycles, Ketuvim
         [Michael and Abby Pitkowsky]
Bike Riding on Shabbat
         [David Charlap]
Ketuvim Reading on Shabbat Afternoon
         [Shlomo Katz]
Meds shabbos vs tisha bav
         [Chaim Shapiro]
Picture Book for Maseches Keilim
         [Steven I Rosenberg]
Pru Urvuu and Sheva Mitzvot Bnei Noach
         [Zemira Wolf]
Recording Phone Conversations
         [Avraham Reiss]
Squatting and Theft
         [Shlomo Katz]
Tax, Tzedakkah and Maaser
         [Robert A. Book]


From: Merril_Weiner/CAM/<Lotus@...> (Merril Weiner)
Date: Tue, 1 Jul 1997 12:34:41 -0400
Subject: Re: Ballgames and squatters

Yehuda and Rebecca Poch wrote:
> There is a vast difference between these two issues.  On the one hand,
> we have a person who has paid a fee to watch a game.  Thus, he is
> entitled to attend.  Once the game is underway, and sufficiently so that
> it can be assumed that those seats still empty will remain so (generally
> the third inning or so...) that assumption can be made, and the people
> with rights to those seats, where such rights have been bought, can be
> said to be mafkir those rights by not showing up.  Where those tickets
> have not been sold, they likely won't be.  Thus, there is little
> halachically wrong with moving down.  Whether such a move is a moral one
> is perhaps open to question.

There may very well be a halachic problem here.  When a person buys a
ticket, they have not paid to watch a game, but paid for the right to sit
in their assigned seats.  To move down to a more expensive section, a
person may be guilty of stealing since they end up paying a lower price
than the price for which the stadium sells the tickets.  All this is done
without the permission of the stadium.  How is this different from buying a
guitar and swapping it before you leave for a more expensive one telling
yourself, "oh, nobody would buy it anyway."  Whether or not somebody would
buy it may be irrelevant.  Taking a more expensive product or using a more
expensive service than that for which you paid may be very relevant.  Ask
your LCOR
-Merril Weiner

From: Akiva Miller <kgmiller@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Jul 1997 12:47:18 -0500
Subject: re: Ballgames and squatters

In MJ 26:74, Yehuda and/or Rebecca Poch offered a reasonable explanation
that once it has become clear that the better seats will remain empty,
they become hefker, and the owners incur no loss if people move to those
better seats.

It appears to me that this argument would hold true *only* for moving to
better seats in the same price category. By moving to a more expensive
seat, one IS depriving the owners of the extra income which that more
expensive seat could bring in.

One might argue that after a while, the owners realize that no one else
is coming to the box office to buy tickets, and so they resign
themselves to not getting any additional income. But this does NOT mean
that they give up their rights to the unsold seats. On the contrary,
they are very insistent that those seats remain empty, because they have
a financial interest in FUTURE ticket sales.

If the owners would allow people from the $20 section to move to the $50
seats at half-time, then the $50 seats lose a significant portion of
their value, because there is less incentive to spend extra for them.
Some of the people who spent $50 will feel foolish at having spent so
much, and next time, they may very well gamble on a cheap seat, hoping
for a free upgrade if the seats are not sold out.

>This is not just a moral issue, it's *exactly* like squatting: <<<
>Squatting is theft, plain and simple, by deriving a benifit for which
money should be paid, without paying it. >>> When the seats are at
different prices, the exact same logic applies.

Akiva Miller

From: <bsegal@...> (Binyomin Segal)
Date: Tue, 1 Jul 1997 14:11:49 -0500
Subject: Ballgames and squatters

though its been a long time since i learned the relevant gemaras, i
believe that both the ballgame and the apartment squatter are cases of:

zeh neheneh v'zeh lo chaser (this one benefits but that one does not

and as i recall the gemara is clear that the halacha in those cases is
patur aval assur. that is the person is exempt (after the fact) from
paying, but it is prohibited. i seem to recall that essentialy it is
forbidden, but since there was no loss, there is no way for the court to
assess and force payment.

however, if one could be sure that the seat you are in has been sold, to
someone that is not coming, you might have a case that they dont care ie
were mafkir their seats.

what say you all?



From: Carl Singer <CARLSINGER@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Jul 97 20:21:20 UT
Subject: Baseball Seating

Re: moving down to better seats -- one can probably justify (rationalize) or 
forbid just about anything.  Consider the following:

(1) Could you be arrested for doing this (is Denay Malchus?)

(2) If an usher saw you would he ask you to refrain from doing this.

(3) Do you sneak down or openly do so.

(4) Have you violated a contract -- you paid for a seat in section 1 and have 
taken a seat in section 2.

(5) Morris Ayin -- look there go them Jews taking what doesn't belong to them.

(6) Are you causing the "landlord" (baseball team / stadium owner / 
municipality / ticket broker) a financial loss -- after all you bought a $5 
ticket and used a $7 seat.

(7) Is there a differentiation between purchasing the right to watch the game 
from a $5 vantage point (seat) and a $7 seat.  How do you justify not paying 
the $2 difference.

(8) Does the seat being vacant have anything to do with this discussion.

(9) Does "everyone does it" have anything to do with this discussion.

(10) The Cubs -- are you serious.

Carl Singer


From: Carolyn Lanzkron <CLKL@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Jul 97 12:32:32 UT
Subject: Bat Cohen and Challah

Why does a bat-kohain separate challah?


[I do not think that a bat-kohain is any different from anyone else in
the requirement to seperate Challah, as she is required in the matnat
kehuna (gifts to the kohen) as is anyone else. In a period where people
were in a state of Taharah, a bat kohen in her fathers house probably
was allowed to eat the challah that was given to the cohen. But along
the same lines, why is there (or should my question be, is there?) a
requirement for a cohen to take off challah if he makes a dough? Mod.]


From: Michael and Abby Pitkowsky <pitab@...>
Date: Tue,  1 Jul 97 09:13:16 PDT
Subject: Bicycles, Ketuvim

>Please could someone give me a convincing argument why riding a bicycle 
>is not permitted on Shabbat. Whilst I am pretty sure that it ought to be 
>forbidden and I accept that it is, I have a hard time explaining why. 
>The two reasons which I have been told are as follows.

R. Yosef Hayyim from Baghdad permits riding a bicycle on Shabbat for 
anyone when there is an eruv and when there isn't he says when someone is
needed by the public, e.g. to be a shaliah tzibbur, to hear kaddish, or 
to read torah, it is permitted even without an eruv (Rav Pealim, vol. 1 
Orah Hayyim, no. 25).  R. Yosef Hayyim was referring to very basic
bicycles which are still available today.  He does not feel that one
should be worried about the possibility of fixing it b/c the chances of
something happening are slim and he only suggests to fill up the tire
with air before shabbat.  R. Eliezer Waldenberg (Tziz Eliezer, vol. 7,
no. 30) disagrees with all of R. Hayyim's points.  R. Ovadiah Yosef 
(Yahveh Daat, vol. 2 no. 42) says that one should be stringent and not
ride a bicycle although he agrees with many of R. Hayyim's points as to
one it should be permitted.  As to the possibility of fixing (shema
yitaken), R. Yosef says that many other things could be forbidden if it
is possible for them to break such as sitting on chairs yet we don't 
forbid something when there is a slight chance of breakage.  In addition
R. Yosef says that we should not make enactments (gezerot) which are
not in the Talmud.

>Second question:  the Talmud discusses a custom of reading ksuvim
>on Shabbos afternoon.  When did this stop?

Yizthak Moshe Elbogen in his classic _HaTefillah BeYisrael_ pg. 139 
(there is an English translation published by JPS but I don't have it) is
not aware of any post-Talmudic period evidence of reading from ketuvim
on Shabbat at Minha which is the custom found in the talmud (see Shabbat

Name: Michael Menahem and Abby Pitkowsky
E-mail: <pitab@...>


From: David Charlap <david@...>
Date: Mon, 30 Jun 97 21:44:34 -0400
Subject: Bike Riding on Shabbat

Rafi Stern <rafistern@...> writes:
>1. The chain may derail and you may come to repair it. The chances of a
>chain derailing on a well maintained bike (without gears) are pretty
>slim. Replacing a derailed chain is also a pretty involved business -
>not the kind of thing that you would do with "Hesech HaDaat"
>(automatically, without thinking). Maybe using gears (derailleur / hub
>?) is an Issur and this may be a reason for forbidding the use of a
>bicycle altogether?

If your bicycle has a shifter with a derailleur mechanism (as most
bicycles with more than three speeds have) then it is possible for the
chain to come off of the gear (although not break).  Putting it back is
fairly simple as well and can be done without tools (although your hands
will get very dirty).  I think this is what the issur is referring to.

>2. The pneumatic tyres may puncture and you may come to repair them. The
>ammount of effort required to repair the puncture is so great that
>again, the assertion that you may accidentally come to repair it is not
>really relevant here.

Patching or replacing an inner tube is difficult enough that you would
never do it by accident.  But pumping air into a tire (which may be
enough to get you home if the damage is small) is easy to do, and you
might do it without thinking.  I don't know if inflating a tire is
assur, but I would assume it is unless told otherwise.

David Charlap        | The content of this message is not the opinion
<david@...>      | of Visix Software, nor of anyone besides myself
Visix Software, Inc. +-------------------------------------------------------


From: Shlomo Katz <skatz@...>
Date: Tue, 01 Jul 1997 08:38:15 -0400
Subject: Ketuvim Reading on Shabbat Afternoon

In V.26 #74, Gershon Dubin asked about the gemara which refers to the
custom of reading from the ketuvim on Shabbat afternoon.  He asks
when it ended.

Prsumably he refers to Shabbat (around 116b, I think) which refers to
the custom in Nehardea.  The geonim and rishonim discuss the nature
of this reading, i.e., whether it was a haftarah.  Tosfot in Megillah
(I don't remember the page) asks how this jibes with the mishnah
which says that there is no haftarah in mincha.

Some say that the current Sephardic custom of reading Tehilim 111 on
Shabbat afternoon comes from the gemara referred to.

(Some day, I will finish my book on the history and customs of the
haftarah.  I think I advertised it in these "pages" about four years

Shlomo Katz


From: Chaim Shapiro <ucshapir@...>
Date: Mon, 30 Jun 1997 21:05:53 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Meds shabbos vs tisha bav

	Several years ago I was on some medications for a period of
several months.  The meds were taken four times a day.  Arbitrarily, I
decided to take the meds at 9:00, 1:00, 5:00 and 9:00.
	Realizing that I would have problems with shabbos as well as
tisha bav, I asked my Rav a shaila and recieved a heter to make the
medication both on shabbos, as well as on tisha bav with a small amount
of water.
	There was one problem I did not anticiapte.  Tisha bav (actaully
the ninth of av.it was not a nidcha) was on motzoia shabbos.  I was left
with a choice, then as to how to take my evening dose of medication
(9:00 P.M.)  I could take the medication at the scheduled time, which
would be during bain hashmaos..or to put it another way halachicaly
shabbos and tisha bav...Or, I could take the medication early when it
was stilljust shabbos.  Or, as a third possibility, I could take the
medication later when it was just tisha bav.  Which is preferable?
	To complicate matters a little further, although i did set up my
arbitrary time table for taking the medication, I rarely held to it
exactly.  Often I would take medication early or late depending on what
I was doing.  This was especially true of the last dose of the day.


From: <isser1@...> (Steven I Rosenberg)
Date: Wed, 25 Jun 1997 10:38:18 -0400
Subject: Re: Picture Book for Maseches Keilim

 In response to Carl Sherer :
>I understand that there is a picture book available that serves as a 
>study aid for Maseches Keilim.  If anyone happens to know its name 
>and where it is available in Yerushalayim, I would greatly appreciate 
>the information.

There are two that I know of.  The one printed in Yerushalayim is called
Maros Chaim, and can be obtained from the author, Rav Yeshaya Steinberg,
at 16 Imrei Bina, Jerusalem.  The other called Tavnis Keilim was written
by Rav Moshe Posen.  As of last year, he had only completed the first 20
chapters.  It can be obtained from Y. Posen, 914-425-0062.  Both seforim
have their merits.  The Maros Chaim is more comprehensive, but I found
the Tavnis Keilim easier to follow.

Isser Rosenberg


From: <tzywoolf@...> (Zemira Wolf)
Date: Tue, 1 Jul 1997 17:54:45 +0200
Subject: Pru Urvuu and Sheva Mitzvot Bnei Noach

Is pru urvu one of the sheva mitzvot bnei Noach? If not, are bnei Noach
chayav in this mitzvah?

Zemira Woolf


From: Avraham Reiss <areiss@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Jul 1997 08:54:02 +0300
Subject: Recording Phone Conversations

I would suggest checking out Rabeinu Gershon's Issur against reading
other people's mail.

Avraham Reiss,
email: <areiss@...> 


From: Shlomo Katz <skatz@...>
Date: Tue, 01 Jul 1997 08:11:43 -0400
Subject: Squatting and Theft

In Volume 26 Number 74, Yehuda and Rebecca Poch wrote, "Squatting is
theft, plain and simple, by deriving a benifit for which
money should be paid, without paying it."  This is not necessarily
true.  There are spaces which are not rentable and in such case,
pokim discuss whether the concept of "Zeh neheneh vezeh lo chaser"
would permit squatting.


From: Robert A. Book <rbook@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Jul 1997 00:38:14 -0500 (CDT)
Subject: Tax, Tzedakkah and Maaser

Zev Kaufman <zev@...> writes:
> May one consider the portion of one's taxes used for such things as
> Welfare, Hospitals, etc., as part of "Maaser" ( the 10 -20 % of one's
> earnings set aside for "Tzedakkah" ) ?

If the answer to this question is "No," then do you give 10% of your
pre-tax income, or after-tax income (under the theory that if the
government takes it from you as a tax, then it isn't really your

--Robert Book    <rbook@...>
  University of Chicago


End of Volume 26 Issue 75