Does Anyone Out There
rs tan d
Lag B' Omer?
No, it's not another
lost language. Today
is actually a Jewish
holiday. If you don't
know what it is, don't
be alarmed. Many
couldn't tell you. But,
in Israel and parts of
the Detroit Jewish com-
munity, bonfires, hair-
cuts, weddings and
sports abound on this
tp 've been standing in front of the
Jewish Community Center all
evening, asking passersby if they
'1.N•. know what Lag B'Omer is.
So far, people are lagging way be-
hind on their holidays.
"It's a kind of beer processing,"
insists the accountant from Farm-
ington Hills. "You know, barley, hops,
"I give up," contributes another man
with a Michigan sweatshirt tied
around his waist. "No, wait a minute.
I know. It's the name of the guy who
signed the peace treaty."
"A holiday, that's it, a holiday," a kid
from the raquetball courts said quite
seriously. "Yes, it's a holiday that tracks
the Jewish people and their 40 years
in the desert. They stopped halfway at
a town called Lag B'Omer. You can
look it up."
His mother was smiling. I didn't
have the heart.
What is going on around here?
If asked to define CD-ROM, every-
one would know. How about cyber-
space? How about interactive? But Lag
B'Omer, go figure.
So, what in the heck is Lag B'Omer?
Avraham and Nacha Leaf know; so
do Hazan Sasson Natan, Rabbi Avra-
ham Jacobovitz and Harlene Appel-
man. They've all been there. They've
seen it and felt it.
Been where? Seen what? Felt what?
If that's what you are ask-
ing (and I hope you are),
just stick with me and
you'll be logging long
hours of B'Omer before
you know it.
First the facts —before
the personalities and ex-
periences. You are right.
This isn't a major holiday.
There really aren't special
prayers to be said, nor is
Left, Children play sports In Oak
Park during Lag B'Omer.
Avraham and Nacha Leaf with
their son as he gets his first
haircut in Meron.
it something to tell your unsuspecting
boss about if you need a day off.
"Boss, I told you about the one where
I build the but in the back yard and
need a couple days of This one is dif-
ferent. Here, I build a bonfire and get
a haircut. How about half a day?"
Nope, that doesn't cut it either.
First the words, Lag B'Omer. In the
Hebrew alphabet, each letter has a nu-
merical value. The value for the letter
lamed in the word Lag is 30. The val-
ue for gimel is three, giving the word