Volume 46 Number 57
                    Produced: Mon Jan 10 23:13:05 EST 2005

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Arba Kanfot made from Mesh
         [Andrew Marks]
Cake Substituting for Bread
         [Yisrael Medad]
Chuppah only
         [H Goldsmith]
Cost of simchas
Fake Treife and Expensive Simchas=rolled into one
         [W. Baker]
Imitation Traif Food
         [Joel Rich]
Kula or Humra? [Lenient or Strict?] (2)
         [Minden, Akive Miller]
query: BARAH
         [Andrew Heinze]
Tu B'Shvat (The New Year for Trees) on the J Site + 60 hotsites
         [Jacob Richman]


From: Andrew Marks <machmir@...>
Date: Sun, 9 Jan 2005 15:39:44 -0500
Subject: Re: Arba Kanfot made from Mesh

> I pointed out that, to the best of my knowledge, R. Moshe 
> -- the Gadol HaDor -- had written that arba kanfot made from mesh 
>do require tzitzit

Rav Moshe poskens very clearly that synthetics do not need tzitzis.  The
mesh garments, being made of synthetic materials are therefore patur.
An added twist to this is that such garments would most likely
constitute hotza'a in an area without an eiruv (just as do passul



From: Yisrael Medad <ybmedad@...>
Date: Sun, 09 Jan 2005 22:03:07 +0200
Subject: Cake Substituting for Bread

Eitan Fiorino asks:

>Doesn't one still have to eat more than 6 or 8 oz. of mezonot (in the
>appropriate amount of time) to be obligated in netilat yadayim and
>birkat hamazon? 

and Mark Steiner writes

>I would appreciate sources for the ruling that eating a kezayit for
>seudah shlishit is a keviat seudah.  (I don't deny there are sources,
>but I am not familiar with them.)

>(3) The usual definition of kevi`at seudah for PHB is much more than
>kezayit, 4 "eggs" or 8 "zeytim" is the classical definition.

again, without paskining, and without being final, here are some
relevant sources:-

see OH 168:6:

"...if one eats [a 'pat haba'ah b'kisanin which usually is mezonot] a
quantity the others consider a meal size, even if he isn't satiated, he
blesses Motzi and Birkat HaMazon [and should wash his hands].  And if he
originally thought to eat a bit and just say Mezonot but continued and
ate more, a quantity which others would consider meal size, he says
Birkat HaMazon even if he didn't say Hamotzi originally"

and the MB there, note 25, reads that if he didn't eat all that much but
there is enough left over that would make up a "meal", then he has to
wash, bench and grace.

and OH 184:6

that the shi'ur for Hamotzi, et al., is kazayit but that's Rabanan.
D'oraita, whatever fills you up, even less. So it would seem that we
having a "fluid" kazayit measurement in that it depends more on the
quotient of satiation than an actual volume or weight in this case.

Yisrael Medad


From: <HHgoldsmith@...> (H Goldsmith)
Date: Sun, 9 Jan 2005 14:29:54 EST
Subject: Chuppah only

      We did have over 20 guests respond that they were coming to the
      chuppah but not the meal. I thought this was very considerate and
      appreciated the time they took to share our simcha.

As I mentioned in a previous posting, if the option of "chuppah only" is
printed on the reply card, it might encourage more people to respond
with this choice if they feel that they cannot stay for the meal. It is
not fair for people to respond that they are coming for the entire
wedding, only to leave before the main dish is served. This wastes the
money of the families paying for the wedding, not to mention the food.


From: Anonymous
Date: Sun, 9 Jan 2005 17:24:46
Subject: Re: Cost of simchas

      I don't expect to be invited to every wedding in our community,
      but I have learned that there are people who do. I think the best
      "cure" for expensive simchas if for people to only invite those
      who are close to them and leave the rest for the sheva
      brachas. But I don't think there is much chance of that happeneing

In my community, most sheva brachot are made and paid for by friends.
We get together and share the costs of making a nice meal.  One of the
group whose finances forced them to invite fewer participants to the
wedding, gave us a fairly large list of people who they wanted to see at
the sheva brachot because they couldn't afford to invite them to the
wedding.  Those of us who had to write checks for the sheva brachot were
less than happy with the situation.  Before suggesting packing the sheva
brachot with a lot of surplus guests one should think twice.


From: W. Baker <wbaker@...>
Date: Sun, 9 Jan 2005 17:02:34 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Fake Treife and Expensive Simchas=rolled into one

After snipping much interesting material about whether a Viennese table
constitutes a second meal, I see that we can make an interesting
combination of two threads on this group, expensive simchas and
imitation treif foods.  Here we have both in one Viennese table:-)
First, this "over the top" dessert is expensive, adding to the cost for
each guest.  Second, these cakes are all made to LOOK LIKE or TASTE LIKE
rich dairy pastries with lots of cram fillings and toppings.  Just
because these fake parev creams are now quite a few years old(they began
to appear in my youth in the 40's and 50's when you had to leave the
non-dairy creamer in its original package) they still are a kind of
imitation treif, but everyone accepts them now.  Will this be what
happens to the facon and mock shrimp as time goes on?  We already, can
make Beef Stroganoff with fake sour cream, so why not a fake
cheeseburger with baco-bits?

I guess what i am trying to say, is a little consistency might be nice
and, as a diabetic, I would not be upset if the Viennese table just
disappeared over the horizon:-) Somehow I always seem to be posting
about food.  Perhaps a bit of sublimation, or an overactive interest in
substitutions in food both for kashrut and health reasons.

Wendy Baker

> (6) Since I'm on the subject of cake, I will issue the following
> advisory which is relevant also to the current discussion of
> gluttonous/glutinous weddings: recently a custom has developed,
> primarily in the U. S. but also sometimes in Israel (where the parties
> are from the U. S.) of bringing out a "Viennese Coffee Table" instead of
> serving dessert.  The tables are cleared, the guests run to grab cakes,
> puddings, and then (to salve their conscience) fruit.  Many don't even
> <snip>
> 	Eating bread together with the Boston Cream Pie at a VCT solves
> the problem according to almost all poskim (but not all!  Names on
> request).  Many will hold that this "solution" is worse than the
> problem.  Better yet might be simply to "bensh" before the VCT.  Best
> would be to listen to your doctor and not eat anything at a VCT.


From: <Joelirich@...> (Joel Rich)
Date: Sun, 9 Jan 2005 14:47:43 EST
Subject: Re: Imitation Traif Food

> In the late 1970's, there was briefly a kosher pizza shop near Herald
> Square (I think Broadway and 32nd) that specialized in foods that seemed
> non-kosher but were actually tofu-based or the like.  I remember the
> pepperoni pizza and cheeseburgers, and the off-putting odors.
> Since it only lasted a few weeks as I recall, I assume that others DO
> have the same feelings.

If you are referring to "kosher world", I think it lasted a few years
not a few weeks.

Joel Rich


From: Minden <phminden@...>
Date: Sun, 09 Jan 2005 20:31:04 +0100
Subject: Re: Kula or Humra? [Lenient or Strict?]

Aliza Berger wrote:

> By common sense, one would think that leniency would lead to a more  
> inclusive decision, i.e., that the blessing can be said in the presence  
> of fewer than 10 men. Can someone explain how the rule "safek brachot  
> lehakel" works, if not according to common sense?

The kulo refers to the _mitzve_ of goumel benshen, so the strictness of
this duty is lowered and you don't have to say it. It doesn't refer to
the reshus or the fun of saying a broche. (The rationale of the
principle is avoiding broches levatole.)

Lipman Phillip Minden

From: <kennethgmiller@...> (Akive Miller)
Date: Mon, 10 Jan 2005 18:59:59 -0500
Subject: Re: Kula or Humra? [Lenient or Strict?]

Aliza Berger asked about the term <<< "safek brachot lehakel" [when
there is a doubt about a blessing, we are lenient]. By common sense, one
would think that leniency would lead to a more inclusive decision, i.e.,
that the blessing can be said in the presence of fewer than 10 men. Can
someone explain how the rule "safek brachot lehakel" works, if not
according to common sense? >>>

I had this exact question for many years. Utlimately, I came to the
conclusion that we were making the mistake of translating it literally,
when it is actually a shorthand for more complex thought.

The mistaken translation of "safek brachos l'hakel" is "If you're in
doubt about making a blessing, you don't have to be strict and careful,
but instead you can do whatever you want. So go ahead and say it!"

The proper understanding is: "If you're in doubt about making a
blessing, then you have to acknowledge that saying it might constitute a
blessing in vain. And we are generally strict and cautious to avoid
saying a blessing in vain. So be *lenient* on the *requirement* to say
it, and don't worry about skipping it!"

Akiva Miller


From: Andrew Heinze <heinzea@...>
Date: Sun, 09 Jan 2005 15:19:07 -0800
Subject: query: BARAH

Can someone help me understand what it means that in Marcus Jastrow's
lexicon, the verb "barah" is said to have had, in Biblical Hebrew, the
meaning "to hollow out"?

Is that correct? Is there a connection between that root meaning and "to 

Andrew R. Heinze
Professor of American History, University of San Francisco
E: <heinzea@...>
Web: http://www.usfca.edu/fac-staff/heinzea/


From: Jacob Richman <jrichman@...>
Date: Mon, 10 Jan 2005 02:16:06 +0200
Subject: Tu B'Shvat (The New Year for Trees) on the J Site + 60 hotsites

Hi Everyone!

Tu B'Shvat, the New Year for Trees, falls on the 15th of the
Hebrew month of Shvat, January 25 this year (5765 / 2005). 
This Jewish mini-holiday is of major importance to our appreciation 
of Nature and our relationship to it.

The J Site - Jewish Education and Entertainment 
has several entertaining features to celebrate Tu B'Shvat:

Jewish Trivia Quiz: Tu B'Shvat

Which fruit is used to make wine ? 
When did Kabbalists originate the Tu B'shvat Seder ? 
How many glasses of wine are drunk at the Tu B'Shvat seder ? 
What branch of a tree did the dove bring back after the flood ? 
How many days does the Hebrew month of Shvat have ? 
What is associated with both Chanukah and Tu B'Shvat ? 
In Israel, what happens to trees starting on the 15th of Shvat ? 
Since 1901, how many trees has the Jewish National Fund planted 
in Israel ? 
According to the Torah, which fruits did the spies bring to the children
of  Israel in the wilderness ? 

The above questions are examples from the multiple choice 
Flash quiz. There are two levels of questions, two timer settings.
Both kids and adults will find it enjoyable.

Tu B'Shvat Clipart
Whether you need a picture for your child's class project, 
a graphic for your synagogue, Hillel or JCC Tu B'Shvat
announcement, the Jewish Clipart Database has the pictures
for you. You can copy, save and print the graphics in
three different sizes. 

Multilingual Word Search Game: Tu B'Shvat
Enter the Multilingual Word Search game and choose the
language you would like to play in: English, Hebrew or
Russian. There is an easy mode for the kids and a harder
mode for us big kids. Each game is randomly generated.
You can even print out a blank game (and the solution page) for 
offline playing. 

Multilingual Hangman - Tu B'Shvat
It's the classic Hangman game recreated in an online Flash version. 
If you expect your simple "hang the man by the rope" drawing then 
you are in for a surprise. The game can be played in English or 

My Hebrew Song Book - Tu B'Shvat Hebrew songs (with vowels)
for viewing and printing. All songs are in graphic format so you
do not need Hebrew installed to view or print them. 

The J site has something for everyone, but if that is not 
enough, I posted on my website 60 links about Tu B'Shvat, 
from history and customs to graphics and recipes.
Site languages include English, Hebrew, Russian, Spanish,
French, Portuguese, German and Italian.
The web address is:

Please forward this message to relatives and friends, 
so they may benefit from these holiday resources.



End of Volume 46 Issue 57