Articles by Eve Poupko

I Wanna Be A….


garbage

With mazel tovs abounding, the birth of a child is accompanied by a wide-range of emotions and expectations. If the child is a boy, the hopes that he might one day become a talmid chacham begin to form. That this adorable baby boy could one day be a light unto his nation is an aspiration that many parents secretly harbor. It seems that the only person who is not on board with these grandiose plans is the little boy himself. This lack of shared vision generally comes to light around the time when your three-year-old triumphantly announces his professional goal: to become a garbage man.

Once you get over the shock, you realize that it’s probably better, at least for now, if you jump on the bandwagon, (or, in this case, the back of the truck). Let’s face it, for a three-year-old, there is a lot more excitement associated with being a sanitation engineer than with the aforementioned “vision.” Being a garbage man tugs at his little heartstrings and sings to his soul on many levels.


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The Sidewalk Less Traveled


cars in traffic

Normally, one does not look for an open miracle. However, a recent trip to Brooklyn convinced me that the laws of nature are suspended for this fine borough of New York, at least when it comes to transportation. This is particularly evident when driving and is equally true when parking. One soon learns that, in Flatbush and Boro Park, the rules of the road are not written in stone or, shall we say, in pavement. For example, when traveling on a main thoroughfare such as Ocean Parkway, it seems that stopping at a red light is optional. As expected, some beeping and honking of horns does ensue. Ironically, the beeping is not aimed at the offending red-light runner. Rather, it is meant to urge on the person whose light has just turned green. After all, why should a little thing like a car barreling through the intersection at 50 mph stop that driver from exercising his rightful right of way or, even worse, causing delays for the people waiting impatiently behind him?


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All Aboard


child

For some reason, optimistic people often stand out among their peers. Sometimes they’re viewed with awe, while other times, people simply find them annoying. Regardless of whether nature or nurture is responsible for their more than pleasant personalities, it is interesting to note that there is a unique group of individuals who excel in the area of optimism. The reason they don’t annoy anyone with their positive outlook is because they often go unnoticed. They are our children. Sadly, between the temper tantrums (theirs, not yours), the messes, and the squabbles, it’s easy to overlook this amazing attribute. But if we watch and listen carefully, we just might learn something.


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All Aboard


baby

For some reason, optimistic people often stand out among their peers. Sometimes they’re viewed with awe, while other times, people simply find them annoying. Regardless of whether nature or nurture is responsible for their more than pleasant personalities, it is interesting to note that there is a unique group of individuals who excel in the area of optimism. The reason they don’t annoy anyone with their positive outlook is because they often go unnoticed. They are our children. Sadly, between the temper tantrums (theirs, not yours), the messes, and the squabbles, it’s easy to overlook this amazing attribute. But if we watch and listen carefully, we just might learn something.


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Color Me Blue


crayons

A recent life cycle event left me feeling a little blue. After I took my children to do their back-to-school shopping, I realized that for the first time in over 15 years, I didn’t have to buy crayons for anyone. Crayons have a special place in my heart. Having used them as a child and then being reunited with them as a parent, I couldn’t help but feel a twinge of sorrow. You see, crayons, which are not as unassuming as they seem, have taught me some of life’s greatest lessons. Peering up at us with their colorful pointy faces, they stand soldier-like in their box, lined up next to their nearest relative in the color spectrum, waiting anxiously to see what the world has to offer. As often is the case, it is only after they’re gone that we realize the impact they had on our lives.


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Best Friends through Thin and Thick


scale

Upon hanging up the phone, Rochel went into her living room and plopped herself down on a chair.

“What am I going to do?” she wailed.

“What’s the matter?” her unsuspecting but concerned husband asked.

“I just got off the phone with Sima, you know, my best friend from seminary. I haven’t seen her in 20 years, and she happens to be in town. She said she wants to stop by to see me tomorrow.”

“I’m not really understanding,” her husband replied, shaking his head in confusion.


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