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El Al Newsletter: February 2014

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This is El Al BBGs February 2014 newsletter, the theme is love! Enjoy :)

This is El Al BBGs February 2014 newsletter, the theme is love! Enjoy :)

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  • 1. EL AL BBG Lay All Your Love On Me Mama Mia! Night 2.1.14 FEBRUARY 2014 NEWSLETTER Letter from the Mazkirah: What is Love? “...awkwardly, and often with a great deal of mess...” - Lemony Snicket Someone asked me a question recently. They asked me, what is love? Me being the sarcastic asshole that I am responded with: “baby don’t hurt me don’t hurt me no more.” This was in reference to a moderately bad song from the 90s. So they asked me the same question again and I told them love is when someone else's happiness is more important than your own. Now if i’m being completely honest I think I saw this explanation on tumblr and I’m not sure if I fully agree with it. After some thorough research I’ve found that there are hundreds of definitions for love. One of my favorites being a quote from Lemony Snicket Love to El Al from Coby Simler that says: “Love can change a person the way a parent can change a baby- awkwardly, and often with a great deal of mess.” To me it is fascinating how many different definitions and ideas there are about love. For example the concept that loving someone is different than being in love. And that the way you love your friends is different from how you love your parents which is again different than you love your boyfriend or girlfriend. This month you get to see numerous perspective and ideas about love and what we love. From Coby Simler’s article about his love for El Al to Sophie Mann’s Words From the Wise Column to Charlotte Fron’s wordserach. We’ve really covered all the bases. Get ready for an enjoyable and possibly educational experience about the incredibly abstract concept of love. Submitted with undying love for, Shoulder touching, knowing the answer, our beautiful sister chapters SF1, Chai and JEM, the loveable Alephs of our brother chapter SiWi #2524, and of course my heart and home EL AL BBG #1863 I remain, Samantha Alvarez Highlights: Words From the Wise Songs about love Forever and Always My Lost Love 2 3 4 5 My dearest sisters of El Al BBG, What defines our two chapters as brother and sister chapters? How is El Al any different to SiWi from JSZ, Neshikot or Atz' Chaim? Maybe it is more events with each other, or the fact that we go to the same schools. Maybe. But I don't think it is either of those. Because no matter how many events I have with JSZ, Neshikot or Atz' Chaim, I will never feel the same bond that I feel for El Al. El Al is what completes my bbyo experience, it is what makes me who I am, and that is something that I cherish everyday. You are the girls that have made me a better person. And I can never pay you back. So I could be writing you a poem or some sort of love letter, but to be honest, I don't think that words could describe my love for you. As many of you know, I am a pretty happy guy to begin with, but every single time I see one of you at a business meeting or stop to say hi at school I feel more than just happy. I feel loved. I feel loved and accepted by every one of you.That is something that I haven't experienced before anywhere. So I want to try and love you back as much as you have loved me. That means that every time you are feeling sad, just remember that I am here and always willing to help. If you are mad, sad, depressed, annoyed, come to me and I will drop almost anything to make you feel better. Really. It is my commitment to you that makes us brother and sister chapters. And I am proud to say that I am in love with El Al.
  • 2. Words From the Wise: Sophie Mann I went to me first event in June of 2010 and fell in love instantly. I joined after my second event after a relay race with baguettes. I was chapter sh'licha, s'ganit, and n'siah and helped restart Sabra BBG. There are no words to sum up what El Al means to me; they helped me see myself as beautiful and gave me the most spectacular family. I would not be who I am today without El Al.  I have learned so much in BBYO, and I am not going to give you the typical "you don't need a position to make something of yourself" speech because you've heard that before. I want to tell you something a little different.  The theme of this newsletter is "love." I have never seen a more appropriate theme for our chapter's newsletter. The thing that attracted me to El Al was love. Before I joined El Al, I had terrible body image issues. At my second event, I was in the middle of one of the worst periods of my life, but something changed at the event. Halfway through, I went to the bathroom and looked in the mirror. For the first time in much, much too long, I didn't hate what I saw, and that was when I knew I needed to immerse myself wholly in this Looking for Love BEMINE CARMINE CHOCOLATE CORAL FANDANGO FUCSHIA LOVE PRETTYINPINK SALMONPINK MAGENTA RED VALENTINESDAY chapter. The love that the chapter exuded, that I could feel even as a new prospective, was something I could not pass up.  That's what I want to teach you. Passed leadership roles or being popular in the region, the love of El Al is far more important and will bring you more happiness than any title or number of friends on Facebook will. You will carry that love with you forever, when whether or not you were morah doesn't matter anymore. It was this love that changed my life, not being sh'licha or a chairwoman. Embrace the love girls in the chapter give you, period. There will never be an absence of that love because that's what BBG is founded on; every Menorah Pledge principle is founded upon the love of Judaism, helping others, and CERISE LIPS IMYOURS MAUVE ROSES VIOLET MADE BY: Charlotte Fron being part of a sisterhood that hungers for acceptance and love. So, love. Love yourself. Accept the love of others. Love your sisters. Keep feeding love into the chapter because the chapter will only continue to grow in numbers and strength if it is filled with loving member; love breeds passion, and passion is the fuel of El Al's plane. Love will truly keep us together. Submitted with undying love for how much love is in this chapter, Beatle's references, we are the seniors, we get the wieners, and my heart, home, and love of El Al BBG #1863 I remain Sophie Mann A proud BBG madly in love with El Al BBG #1863 from June 2010-present Hello there, I’m Maddy Kaplan. I’m not sure if we’ve met. I’m new to BBG, and I am really loving it so far. I guess this month’s theme was love. When I was asked to write a piece for this column I was excited, but had exactly zero ideas. I mean, I love my family, and my friends, and my pets as much as any person can, but it didn’t seem right. I didn’t want to write to you about something that only I personally love. I guess I don’t really understand love. To be honest, I’m 13 and it doesn’t have much meaning. The love that most people my age hold should really be called lust, and yet we still call it love. But in the same way, I do still love things. I genuinely love my family in a certain unconditional way, because we are connected, and they are what I’ve grown up into. I am part of them, and just the same, they are a part of me. One dictionary.com definition for the word love is “affectionate concern for the well-being of others.” So yes, I do love my family, friends, and pets. I found a quote today that I found really interesting, and is so blatantly obvious that I feel ashamed for not putting it into words earlier. “even if i really like you i probably still hate you a little tbh” And yes, this was written by just another grammar-phobic teenager like you or me, but I think it captures something. There is room for hate in love, and I just think that’s a really cool idea. Something you should think about, because I don’t have too much space to write. Now I brought up this idea at Mamma Mia Night, but for those of you who weren’t there, here’s my point. Love is an abstract noun. It’s something everyone feels, and it seems so real, but English still believes it is something you cannot touch or feel. And I guess that’s true. You can’t hold love in the palm of your hand, but it’s there and we all know that. And if love is just a series of chemical reactions, then how is it not real? And yes, sometimes we do use “love” to lightly, when we don’t really love things, but I have already found myself, over the past few days, and even in this article, using the word “love” without noticing, in places that I maybe should not of. But that’s just how it’s been (let’s go with the fake word) appropriatized by society. By taking this big, scary idea: Love, and turning it into something not to be feared, I think we have made ourselves okay with the idea of being in love. So I guess this has really just been a rant about love and things. I’m sorry you had to sit through this. I mean, I really have no idea what I’m talking about. But this is what I have written. So there. Good night, or good morning, or good afternoon, I love you. And yes, I do mean that. <3
  • 3. Songs About Love By: Samantha Alvarez 2. Your Drums, Your Love - Aluna George This song is addicting. Listen to it three times and you’ll be stuck. Im sure. 3. She Will Be Loved - Maroon 5 If you didn’t grow up on this song then I don’t know what to say. Honorable mention: This Love. 4. Skinny Love - Bon Iver (or Birdy) Both Bon Iver and Birdy do renditions of this song that just hurt so good. 5. Love Song - Sara Bareilles This is a throwback to 6th grade for me (aka 6 years ago). For the record you should know all the words 6.Falling in Love At A Coffee Shop - Landon Pigg This song may possibly be too sweet. Actually im going to go to Philz right now, fingers crossed. 7. Beautiful and Very Smart - Harlem I know it doesn’t have love in the title but just listen to it. Extra points for being by my current favorite band. 8. I Love It - Icona Pop I don’t think I need to comment on this. 9. Akward - San Cisco Funny song if you listen to the word. About unrequited love. Also Great Band. 10. Love - Daughter This song is literally the sound of heart Submitted by: Maddie Bennet 1. All You Need Is Love - The Beatles A classic. A must have. Need I say more, The Beatles got it right with this one. (Or all of them, just saying) Summer Love By: Jordana Siegel Impact: Boston was a fabulous way to rediscover my passion for social action. I was privileged to be selected as the part of the group that went to one of the worst areas in Boston, and worked with the teens in the area through a program called Youth Force. Through this program, the teens in the local area were employed by the program to improve the teen voice in Boston and in the state of Massachusetts, as well as improve their area of Boston. They were responsible for having the Massachusetts government donate over nine thousand dollars to support youth jobs in the private sector. I met people that I would never have had a relationship with otherwise, and got to experience walking around an area I would never normally get out of my car in. When we walked around the neighborhoods, there was a sense of community and generosity in the area that I would never have felt in a wealthier neighborhood. Besides this great experience through Youth Force, I got to spend 2 weeks with like-minded Jewish teens who were all focused on improving the world, all while staying on a college campus and experiencing what it is like to be a college kid. It was an amazing experience and I would highly recommend it to everyone in El Al! Michal’s Top 5 Anti-Valentines Day Photos Happy Valentines Day Upcoming: Tahoe Trip El al is going on it's first trip ever! Tahoe. June 19-22. Exciting activities. Official letter coming soon. Hope you can make it! Contact Charlotte Fron if you have questions ladies XOXO - Michal Golovanevsky
  • 4. Submitted by: Charlotte Fron Heart and Home By: Mara Greene It all started in French Class Freshman year, I sat next to this girl, and everyday we would get yelled at by our French teacher who hated us. Some how BBYO came up and I told her I was Jewish. She did not believe me at first. She told me I should come to the event. My first reaction was no way, but finally I decided to come. My first event was the Siwi/Jem/El Al  sleepover. It was very overwhelming, I was kinda scared of how friendly everybody was and how everybody was so outgoing, I am a pretty Forever and Always By: Charlotte Fron Love is not always forever; we can hope it to be. But then again, what is love? How long is forever? Love is a simple yet really complicated concept that we, as humans, sometimes think is "the most important thing, like ever". I'm not saying that love isn't important, I'm saying that there are different kinds of love that all have different importances. We need passion and emotion; they drive us in society. Just hear me out.  There is true love, a concept that is basically only true in fairy tales and Disney movies. Sure, we would love to have true love, but you need conflict in a relationship because that's what makes it interesting and what keeps you going. Even if we don't realize it, we need ups and downs to make the adventure stand out.  There is also the art of being in love. Even though you cannot technically be IN love physically, you basically can because it is when you are so committed to someone that every thing they do looks perfect in your eyes and each time you are around them, you fall even harder for them. I guess falling is something physical, so maybe you can technically be IN love. This can lead to the question of is there such thing as perfection? But I'll let you ponder that... Loving someone is WAY different. I love my family, my friends, and warm chocolate chip cookies. I don't want to marry these things, but I still couldn't live without them because I feel like they shape who I am as a person. I guess that is what love does to someone; it shows who the real you is.  Are you following? I feel like LOVE in general is confusing and hard to explain and people have different explanations and there actually should be different definitions because we all make it our own. We are all different. If love were the same thing or concept or idea that we all have or want, life would be boring because we wouldn't have controversy.  What am I saying? Love can be forever, like a tattoo. But, you can technically get a tattoo removed and you can technically love for a constrained amount of time. Maybe people get tattoos that have to do with love because it is such a fantasy to have true love that lasts forever, but having the word love on your beautiful body forever makes us feel confident and content.  loud person myself so to see that in everyone there blew me away. As soon as Havdalah started I knew I wanted to join. I loved and still love, cheers. Over the summer I came to events, at that point I liked El Al, I thought it was a cool thing, whatever. I had no idea what a amazing community I was apart of. But then I started to fall in love with it. I started to make really close friends, and every week I look forward to Saturday nights, being crazy with my sisters. I went to my first convention and had one of the best weekends of my life. Then, I had my first fundraiser as Gizborit, I was really nervous that it  would not go well or there wouldn't be enough food. But when I got there my sisters had my back. So many of the girls baked food and stayed there the whole time cheering and advertising. It made me so happy to see all the love and support. One of my favorite things about El Al that is we always have each others back, we will support each other when we are down and root each other on when we succeed. I have met so many new people and my closest friends are in El Al. I love that in El Al you can act completely crazy and instead of being like what the heck is wrong with her, they are just as crazy as I am.  I love all of our Home Ofs. I love that El Al can’t spell just like me. El Al is my home I always feel so comfortable at a events and that I can totally be myself. I love everyone in El Al and I have met so many amazing people that have become my closest friends. El Al is my break from stress. El Al is my heart and home.
  • 5. The Joys of the High School Dilemma by Amelia Tiemann This is an opinionated article and I fully respect the opinions of anyone who has disagreeing thoughts. I wrote this article with the intention of providing some thoughts that will hopefully help to reassure girls in El Al and anyone you would like to share them with that you are not alone. Whatever the obstacles, setbacks, and challenges you are facing, I am here for you if you want to talk. I might even give you some (lame) advice that you may consider taking. But most importantly I would like you all to know that you deserve only the very best from your relationships with other people, with the world, and with yourself. She’s stuffing endless amounts of information into her brain day after day at school. She feels like her mind will just overflow. But she just can’t explain the emptiness that keeps growing deeper and deeper every day inside her heart. Mostly she ignores it; it’s not a priority while she has to focus on her work. She’s skipped every opportunity to spend time with friends because she’s had to study, which makes her feel slightly guilty until she reminds herself that she would have felt more guilty if she had gone. Another week passes and her parents are beginning to notice the faint trembling of her skin as she speaks, the slightly more accentuated lines underneath her eyes. The mass of books and papers on her desk that continually grows larger as if it were alive. The diminishing amount of time when their daughter is with them at the kitchen table, talking animately about her experiences, her dreams, her aspirations, her goals. Because the more she tries to entertain herself with these goals, which in theory make her happy to think about, the more she doubts herself. She tosses them aside because all everyone at school ever talks about is how much they worry that they won’t succeed rather than how excited they are to pursue any goals. And it all feels the same, all the time. She lets herself become just like everyone else. She wonders, how is this inspiring? How is it living? Why is all she is capable of feeling just emptiness and worry? If you can relate to this girl, you are among the majority of high school students who live with high levels of self doubt. As teenagers we live in a world where it always seems like the older we get, the more barriers form in between what we “should” do and what we want to do. As if life is a constant battle with ourselves, with our desires. The subconscious awareness that it is better to oppress every impulse that does not fall under what we “should” do comes from multiple sources that in a way counterbalance each other. We get the message from very early on that education is our primary concern over recreational activities much like eating too much candy just breaks too many moral laws to wrap our heads around. But one of the most confusing parts of the growing-up journey is an element of life with which everyone continues to grapple for the rest of their lives: discovering how much we should or should not let other people dictate our decisions, thoughts, and emotions.
  • 6. Humans have the great privilege of being able to feel a vast spectrum of emotions, from the darkest depths of depression and anger to some extreme level of hysteric elation, and all those beautifully awkward ones in between. By high school the spectrum is much more complex than when we were really little. At this point in life we reach a dilemma because we are expected to know how to socialize and have friends while at the same time we focus all our energies toward our own academic success. We are pushed into a race with no finish line, a never-ending vortex of peer pressure, standards, and studying. So where do we draw the line between how much other people influence our feelings and how much we have to resist the outside world and focus on what we are told we are supposed to do? I think there is absolutely nothing wrong with fully embracing every positive vibe you get from other people. Rather than feeling that you need to suppress the happiness you feel when you are around certain people, let it guide you, and let those people be the ones you spend your time with. The more you let yourself out of feeling like you need to fight off certain people because they are a distraction to your schoolwork or for whatever other reason, the more honest you can be with yourself. Because people who make you happy are the best type of distraction there is. Crashing at your friend’s house at 1 a.m. because you have no place to go might just help you realize and let go of what is paining you. The friends that are worth sticking with are the ones who will hug you on the couch while you’re crying and inarticulately attempting to explain why you’re upset through all the slobber and tears on your face. They’re the people who give you compliments that you don’t realize how much you deserve. But they understand how important it is for you to know what they see in you so they say them anyway. The people who truly make you happy are always a necessity to keep in your life and are never, ever a waste of your time. They will help you to bring out the best in yourself and elevate your attitude not only about yourself, but your faith in other people. Build on those relationships because they help to define who you are as a person. Your spirit comes out through those who comfort you. So don’t worry about how people will perceive you, just take as much advantage as possible of the time you can spend with people who make you happy. Whether it’s your favorite teacher, your friends, your family, or someone you’re dating. You should never hold yourself back just because you’re afraid of judgment. The only people who will matter at the end of the day are the ones who help alleviate the emptiness. Channel out the negative and allow the positive to feed your heart and soul. You are a beautiful human being with the potential to accomplish anything. The more happiness you get from others, the fuller your heart will be and the more radiantly you will shine. They might even help to you realize that you have every right to dream, to achieve something unique without anyone else’s pressure holding you back. Familiar Love By: Samantha Alvarez At the event pictured to the left there were 72 people. That number is unprecedented. Why in the world were there so many people? Well, because love. For one, we love El Al, and of course the boys love SiWi. Furthermore though, the truth is we adore our brother chapter and they (obviously) love us too. So even though they can be a bit annoying and incredibly loud and impossibly crazy there is no possible way to deny our love for them. I mean just look at this picture.