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July 07, 1995 - Image 32

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1995-07-07

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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ELIZABETH APPLEBAUM ASSOCIATE EDITOR

0: I often read Tell Me Why men-
tioning "Melrose Place" and "Bev-
erly Hills 90210" — and why not,
they're absolutely fabulous pro-
grams.
But what about "Baywatch"? My
friends and I regularly get togeth-
er to watch the show; we're drawn
to it, of course, because of its pro-
found and intellectually challeng-
ing plots. Can Tell Me Why find a
Jewish connection to "Baywatch"?

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A: Hey all you swingin' Jew-
ish beach babes and boys —
here's a "Baywatch" update for
you that's as cool as David Has-
selhoffs singing career (OK, so
he's a big star in Germany. Can
anyone in this country name
a single one of his albums?).
"Baywatch" babe Alexandra
("Stephanie Holden") Paul,
(who, like other "Baywatch"
stars also heads numerous
Washington-based think
tanks), recently was in Israel to
film a new movie, Lifestyles of
the Rich and Famous. While
there, she and a friend surfed
on over to the Jewish National
Fund, where they planted trees
at the JNF Peace Forest. Awe-
some!

0: I've heard a lot about Ju-
daism's influence on Christianity.
But what about Islam? How much
did Mohammed "borrow" from Ju-
daism?
A: Mohammed borrowed
quite a lot, as a matter of fact.
But first: a little background.
Unlike Jesus, Mohammed did
not declare himself God or God's
son or even the messiah. In-
stead, he claimed to be a prophet
of God, following in the footsteps
of men like Abra-
ham, Isaac and Ja-
cob — which may
help explain why
he incorporated so
many Jewish tra-
ditions into Islam.
Among the sim-
ilarities:
1) Muslims are
directed to under-
go circumcision. As
this was anything
but regular prac-
tice in the Arabian
lands where Mo-
hammed lived,
this clearly reflects
the influence ofJu-
daism.
2) Muslims may
not eat pork, and
meat must be
killed in a ritual
manner.
3)
Muslims
pray regularly at
specific
hours
every day, much
as Jews are com-
manded to daven
at set times dur-
ing the day.
4) Mohammed
believed in the
teachings of the
Jewish Bible, abol-
ished idol worship,
advocated monotheism and di-
rected Muslims to set aside one
day each week as a sabbath for
prayer and worship.

Q: Is it true that the first physi-
cian to remove a ruptured appen-
dix was Jewish?
A: It is absolutely true.
Simon Baruch (1840-1921)
was a native of Posen, Prussia,
who immigrated to the United
States in 1855. He settled in
South Carolina, and received
his degree from the university
there in 1862. Soon after,
Baruch joined the Confederate
Army, where he worked as a
surgeon and served three years
at the front. During the war he

was captured and held at Fort
McHenry, where he wrote Two
Penetrating Wounds of the
Chest, for years a standard text.
When the war ended, Baruch
moved to New York and be-
came head of hydrotherapy at
Columbia University's College
of Physicians and Surgeons.
While there, he not only per-
formed the first successful re-
moval of a ruptured appendix
but contributed greatly to treat-
ments of malaria and typhoid
fever.
Baruch and his wife, Isobel
Wolfe, had four sons, two of
whom rose to prominence.
Hartwig (1868-1953) became
an actor on Broadway. Herman
(1872-1953) was a physician
and banker on Wall Street who
later served as U.S. ambas-
sador to Portugal (1945-1947)
and ambassador to the Nether-
lands (1947-1949).

It's a bird! It's
a plane! It's
Barbara
Henzstein Seagull
Hershey!

Q: I was wondering if
Tell Me Why had ever
considered what
would happen if actress Barbara
Hershey had a feminist daughter
who married a politically correct
son of comedienne Roseanne (for-
merly Barr).
A: Indeed I have spent hours
contemplating that very ques-
tion. The answer, of course, is
that the couple would invari-
ably be named Mr. and Mrs.
Hershey-Barr.
But wait. There's even more
to consider, my wise friend. Ms.
Hershey, star of that inter-
minably boring Beaches, with
that awful, awful, awful "Wind
Beneath My Wings" theme
song, was born Barbara Hen-
zstein. She changed it, though,
to Seagull after filming Last
Summer, where a girl cares for
an ailing seagull. When the an-
imal died, Ms. Hershey said,
she felt its "spirit enter my
body."
Incidentally, Ms. Hershey
named her son by Mr. Kung Fu
himself, actor David Carradine,
"Free." He later changed it to
Tom.

Send questions to "Tell Me Why"'
c o The Jewish News, 27676
Franklin Rd., Southfield, MI
48034 or send fax to 354-6069.

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