Marty Israel: One Man Show

Bangkok

Thailand

June 25, 2019

My friend and classmate Martin (Marty) Israel applies his artistic sensibility and his computer skills to design alternative one-of-a kind images for the photographs I post on this website.

Most recently, Marty has created several "Themes and Variations."

Just as a musician composes a Theme and Variations, Marty begins with the original image and, step by step, develops the "melody" from the simple to the complex, from the recognizable to the fanciful.  The variations are colorful, challenging and surprising. 

Super Bowl XLVI - 2012

Bangkok
February 1, 2012
Wednesday
 
My Dear Sports Fans,
 
I admit it.   I was about to pen some very snide remarks about Indianapolis!  Indianapolis??  The Super Bowl?? Somehow those two ideas seem so incongruous. (Admit it my friends, some of you are thinking the same thing, yes?)
 
Then I did some research.  To all my (3) friends and (2) relatives in the Midwest, I apologize for my initial  inclination towards irreverence and disrespect.  Indy really is a special place.

<--break->

 

Next Stop? The Horn of Africa!

Bangkok
Thailand

March 29, 2011

Dear Family and Friends,

My upcoming departure for the Horn of Africa reminds me of the dramatic events and the enduring personalities of the 1960's - especially Haile and Abebe.

Who among us can ever forget the sounds and images from late November, 1963: the gunshots in Dallas, the bloodied dress, Walter Cronkite's tears, the murder of the murderer (?), Chopin's music, a boy's salute to the flag covering the coffin of his father John Kennedy, the rider-less horse?

Do you remember the funeral procession - heads of state in a solemn march? Le Président de la République française, Charles de Gaulle at 6'5" (1.96 m) walking beside and towering over the Emperor of Ethiopia, Haile Selassie at 5'1¾" (1.58 m).

De Gaulle died in his bed in 1970. But Selassie?

The opening sequence of the film "Marathon Man" features the archive footage of a graceful young athlete, on a summer evening in 1960, effortlessly running the 42km (26 mi) Olympic marathon, gliding past the Coliseum and along the darkened, torch lit avenues of Rome, sprinting toward the finish line at the Arch of Constantine. Abebe Bikile became the first black African to win a gold medal at an Olympics event. {C}

{C}

Spirituality at a Bangkok Synagogue

This essay was published in To Thailand With Love by ThingsAsian Press.  2013

 

As I descend towards Suvarnabhumi Airport, Wat Sothon Wararam Worawihan appears below.  Since the population of Thailand is 95 percent Buddhist, a temple complex near the airport is not unexpected.  What is unexpected is the large Aeyatul Muslimin mosque that towers beside the airport expressway en route to downtown Bangkok.  

Most Thai Muslims live in Southern Thailand, near Malaysia, but there is a sufficient population in the capital to support more than 100 local mosques.  Citizens of the Hindu faith maintain several mandirs.   

Christians of every denomination attend large churches or smaller neighborhood assemblies.  

As an American Jew who retired to Bangkok, I expected to find a semblance of Jewish life in this city.  But what took me by surprise was the vibrancy of the small yet devoted community.  I met Jews from the Americas, Israel, Australia, France, England, Romania, Hungary, South Africa, Afghanistan, and the Middle East.  

To Shanghai With Love

This essay will be published in To Shangahi with Love - ThingsAsian Press.

"When everything seemed hopeless, there was an open door.  I don't want anyone to forget where that door was.  That is why the story needs to be told.  Soon there won't be anyone around to remember how we survived against all odds."   Shanghai Refugee

                                          "To Shanghai with Love"

By Jan Polatschek and Cheng Na Dai (Daisy)

Jan writes:

The Goldstaub Family loves Shanghai.  The Blumenthal Family loves Shanghai.  The Rossback and Zysman and Rosenfeld Families love Shanghai.  These European Jewish families along with thousands of others owe their lives to the government of China and to the people of Shanghai.  When they visit China, they come to Shanghai with love.

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