This has not been a banner year for ck. To say the least. So far, I’ve had my beloved Canon 30D SLR and a zoom lense stolen from me while leading our last Taglit-birthright israel trip. That’s close to $2000 hard earned dollars – gone. Just like that. Yesterday, while driving down from Palo Alto to Long Beach, I got into a scuffle in front of a convenience store with some fellows who were bothering a young woman. One of them got clocked hard by ck’s fist-o-fury (see scuffed bloodied fist above) but another assailant came up behind me and whacked me with some kind of blunt, heavy object. He got me in the rib that I cracked riding my bike in Jerusalem. Then someone punched me in the stomach and winded me. As I fell to the ground, they kicked me numerous times. As far as I can tell there were 5 of them. They all ran off when they saw a uniformed individual approach. They must have thought he was a security guard. He wasn’t – he worked at one of the myriad fast food joints nearby. Probably on a break buying some smokes. Probably saved my life. After the fact, the attendant at the convenience store brought me some napkins and water to clean off the blood and asked if I wanted to call the police. “Lotta good that’ll do me now” I thought and so I begged off and moved on. The new $400 dummy camera I bought in New York the week before got messed up and is now mostly useless. My ribs hurt again and thus breathing, laughing, sitting still and moving hurts. But whatever – it could have been worse. Pretty bad huh?

Allow me to add for the sake of brevity and discretion that this is really just the tip of the iceberg as far as bad things that happen to ck go. As we speak in fact… but never mind that. The title of the post can easily be answered – of course God doesn’t hate me. God has far more important things to do than bother with the likes of me. In the grand scheme of things, I am an inconsequential blip. But still – when bad things continuously happen to ck people, one can’t help but wonder if there is some kind of cosmic alignment whose sole purpose it is to rain brimstone and redistributive justice upon me. I’m no great rasha (evil person) but I am far from being a tzadik (righteous person). I always have my head covered, but I rarely wear a kippah. I always bring my tallit and tefillin with me whenever I travel but I don’t often actually wear them. I observe the sabbath but my celebration could do with a little more spirituality and a lot less endless sleep. I’ve given away a retarded amount of money to charity but I am often distant and indifferent to those closest to me. On Friday I helped a blind old lady get to her bus stop but on Saturday I just couldn’t back the fuck off.

So all this bad shit that is happening to me is probably just serendipitous and not the result of divine wrath or some bad voodoo mojo karma crap. Nonetheless, one can’t help but think when faced with such a series of unfortunate events. Maybe it won’t stop the bad stuff from happening, but surely being truer to your ideals and being even kinder to others is its own reward? With that in mind, I got into Long Beach at 7 am and despite feeling like I had been run over by a Mack Truck, and despite craving sleep more than life itself, I unpacked my teffilin and went to the synagogue to pray and read the morning megillah for the first time in I don’t know how long (see photo above). I’ll also try to be a better person, really I will! And on the off chance that this is God fucking with me – let me just say… I’m not amused.

Enjoy “Blasphemous Rumours” below as you rightfully laugh at my misfortune. The song is an 80s classic by Depeche Mode off the Some Great Reward album, originally released in 1984 and remastered in 2006. Happy Purim – Mishenichnas Adar… indeed.


About the author


Founder and Publisher of Jewlicious, David Abitbol lives in Jerusalem with his wife, newborn daughter and toddler son. Blogging as "ck" he's been blocked on twitter by the right and the left, so he's doing something right.


  • What happened to the woman you rescued? Not everyone gets to be a hero … I’d say God likes you a little bit.

  • OMG-d, CK! I told you, Laya, and Muffti to join me & Sarah Lefton up in SF for Purim. There was a reason for that. Palo Alto is a rough neighborhood; I’m not surprised that you were assaulted there. πŸ˜‰ No joke; East Palo Alto used to be the USA’s murder capital.

    Joking aside, I hope you are okay, and that you ice your bruises. Be careful that you didn’t get a concussion from that strike to your head. Baruch HaShem that you’re okay!!!

    And you know you’re welcome to crash at my place anytime. Bayit she’li ze bayit shel’kha.

  • CK, go to the hospital. Or at least find a nice Jewish doctor in Long Beach. That rib thing has me worried. You’re not [insert young age] anymore.

  • Ben Baruch: She took off in her car as soon as she could – which was when they focussed their attention away from her and onto me.

    Oyster: No serious strikes to the head so I’m fine.

    Esther: Been there done that, the rib will heal. I clearly haven’t punctured a lung.

    TM: Again, thanks for the concern. I’ll be fine. Seriously.

    I think everyone’s missed the point of this post. Sheesh. I’m not fishing for sympathy!

  • Let’s just say that we’d be the fishy ones if we gave a rat’s ass about your metaphysical ruminations in comparison to our concern of the corporeality of our friend! :-p Suck it up, tough guy. We’re worried about you…

  • Yeah, maybe God has some very complex function by which he decides to smash around decent people like CK (let’s not forget all the tzadiks that take it on the chin) and his ways are mysterious and incomprehensible or maybe, just maybe, there just is no big pie in the sky that doles out things on a just basis? Maybe the world is just a random place where people get what they don’t deserve on a constant basis??

  • maybe your heavenly object lesson was to mind your own business?

    but also, feel better, and be careful

    oh and there is a service in most states where people without insurance who act in defense of someone or who are hurt by a hit and run driver, etc… can get money for medical care.

  • Maybe God likes 80’s synth music and dragged your ass through the muck to insert Depeche Mode on your website. Maybe God would like some Howard Jones and Thompson Twins as well. I know I would.

  • Must have had something to do with that full lunar eclipse the other night…

    ר׀×‒אה שלמה!!!!

  • … clearly G-d’s wrath at the unmarried…

    … or else a way to get you to put on those tefilin and come to shul… or come home to Israel…

    … or maybe I should stop doing this I-am-Gd’s-spokesman bit, as if I’m Rav Ovadia – it’s annoying enough when *he* does it…

  • Ben-David: I live in Jerusalem. As for the other stuff? Yeah maybe πŸ™‚ Too bad Rav Kadouri has gone to his maker – I could use an amulet now.

  • U R a good man, CK. U did the right thing. Wish I had been there.

    This is what is so pathetic about amerika. This incident u had, this is the face of ameirka. THen they go and tell the rest of the world, oh we are so great, yeah we bring freedome to you. THis is their freedom, CK, a country full of violent felons, I should say, terrorists walking around attacking women, 5 against 1.

    It will be over soon for amerika, china rules!

  • God speed, you did the right thing. In fact, you are lucky that you are still alive. Unfortunately in the USA, most such altercations do result in death.

    You are very lucky and should thank G-d for saving your sorry ass. Bench Gomel on Thursday.

  • David, I am going to ignore this ck nonsense for now. I know first hand that you have underplayed your good points. But I am not subject to your misplaced sense of modesty. To the very few blessed individuals who really know you and what you are capable of, you remain a source of inspiration and wonderment. I send to you all the love I have in my heart in the hopes that it will help you get through this rough patch and rediscover that joy in life that you have always radiated and shared with others. Cameras are replaceable, ribs and bruises will heal but there is only one you. Never change. I only wish I could hug you right now.

  • Uh… I know israluv (Ahuva) and I will take that Queen Esther comment as some kind of reference to my androgynous good looks, and sublime but firmly heterosexual appreciation of well crafted shoes. AckFan – I have no clue who you are and your IP address points to a part of the US that I certainly don’t frequent. That having been said, thanks for the too kind and I assure you undeserved words.

    I should get assaulted more often!

  • Whoa-whoa-whoa… ‘androgynous good looks’? Dude, you so belong up in SF! FA-BU-LOUS!!! :-p

  • ck – I was thinking of what you today, after I got my ribs cracked playing ball with big Lutheran men.

    I recently got mixed up in something like that, although in NYC and minus the chick. Of course I had to ask the proverbial “what did I do to deserve this?” question.

    So I figure, if I’m hanging out at 3 am on the stoop of my flat yakkin’ on the cell, there’s a chance some scum deviants maybe are going to sneak up and beat me down.

    Or if I’m playing ball with big Lutheran men, there’s a chance I’m gonna crack some ribs.

    Or if you jump into a dangerous situation to help someone, it may turn out not so good. Or if you’re riding your bike. Or rock climbing. Or courting a nice lady.

    What else we gonna do? Hide? Stop engaging the human race? You’re a lot more engaged in the human race than most so you’re going to experience more, good and bad. In the end, as long as only inanimate objects lose their lives, it’s all life experiences. Eventually we stop wondering if twenty years ago that dude would’ve pulled the trigger. Or if that taxi didn’t suddenly appear out of nowhere in Amsterdam. Of if she would’ve said yes if I had only asked.

    Take my babble for what it’s worth. It’s all just an excuse to post that Nina Simone rendition of Eretz Zavat Chalav I sent you but probably got stuck in your spam filter.

  • Sorry to hear that you are going through a rough spell. If some R&R and change of scene in Tel Aviv will help–give a call. My spare mattress is your spare mattress. Esther can vouch for the quality of the accomodations–fair to middling, but the fridge is full and hey, it’s free!

  • Ck, sorry to hear you got kicked up. But you were very lucky instead of unlucky: being down and getting kicked by a mob can indeed land you some very serious injuries, including death, and you managed to escape such serious injuries!

    Now insert “there’s always one more gun” and othersuch wisdom here…