Somewhere in the Arava– So this Taglit trip has been A-Ma-Zing! I can’t believe they let us into the country finally! We’ve seen EVERYTHING! And our bus is so fun!
Also, the IDF guys on our bus are so down to earth and chill! This one guy Danny is something called a “Lone Soldier“? He’s pretty cool, but is it weird that he eats all the food off our plates when we’re full? Or when we get up to go to the bathroom? Is that like an Israeli custom? Anyways, they’re all great. This other guy named Itzhik was in the Navy, and get this: He’s a dolphin! Can I say that? Is that racist?
Anyway, Itzhik is so cool! He just got back from Gaza and I guess he did some crazy stuff there. So it gets even crazier! Every time we get back on the bus, Itzhik brings me a small present! Yesterday he brought me a piece of string. Today he brought me a small mackerel! Is this like an Israeli thing that I don’t know about? Is he flirting with me?
So tonight we’re going to stay at a Guest House on the edge of this giant crater in the Negev! How cool is that? And guess who wants to show me a special spot where you can see all the stars! Itzhik! Wait, is this moving too fast?
OK, this is bullshit. As we were getting ready to leave the Ecological Desert Kibbutz, I ran into Jessica from Boston and she was talking about how tonight Itzhik promised to show her “a special spot where you can see all the stars.“
The Lone Soldier Center, Tel Aviv: With news that our idealistic and naive Prime Minister was outmaneuvered by Yair Lapid offering Mansour Abbas some sweet political freebies to join his coalition, a new Political Party has signaled that it too is ready to be bought off. The Recently formed Chayal Boded (“Lone Soldier”) Party has signaled that it will swing its electoral strength behind the right coalition… for a price. The Daily Freier joined a hastily convened Press Conference in the Lone Soldier Center Dining Hall just as they finished serving that tasty Chinese chicken with the sticky rice.
“Our demands are simple.” explained Party Spokesperson Doron S. “We need an iPhone charger. A couple of spliffs. Some tuna fish. A big bag of Bamba. Also maybe a bottle of Tubi this weekend after we get back from the South.” Doron whispered hastily with a cluster of advisors behind the microphone and then continued. “Don’t worry about the tuna fish, Josh is doing Miluim this weekend so when he gets back we should be good to go in terms of groceries for at least 2 weeks.”
“Before we join any Coalition…” Doron admonished “The Lone Soldier Party has some serious questions that need answers. Like the Knesset Dining Hall… MK’s eat for free, right? Also, will this give us some sort of discount on our Arnona?”
The Daily Freier stood up to challenge Doron on his Party’s short-sighted platform, but the Lone Soldier Center manager announced that she had an extra toaster oven that she was giving away and we got knocked to the ground in the subsequent chaos.
So now Israel has lots of Vaccines against the Corona Virus! Gadol! Start-Up Nation at its Best! You know, it’s this history of Israeli Innovation that led me to leave my family and friends behind and defend the Land of Israel! Because, by the way, I’m a Lone Soldier. Not a lot of people know that I’m a Lone Soldier, so sometimes I need to remind them. Like right now. Or when I’m on the bus. Or at the Makolet. Honestly there’s not a “Wrong” time to let people know you’re a Hayyal Boded. Am Yisrael Chai!
So back to the vaccine. Is it free for Lone Soldiers? Because, and not to put too fine a point on it, we HATE to spend money. Like ever. On Anything. For example, I plan on stretching out my streak of not buying groceries into my Miluim time as a Reservist. Couple cans of tuna and chickpeas will no doubt end up in my backpack at the end of every weekend. And by “a couple” I mean “around twenty“.
Maybe I can ask about getting the vaccine for free on Secret Tel Aviv, because I also just moved into a new apartment and need a futon. And a toaster oven. Some pots & pans. Maybe a PlayStation.
Wait wut? The vaccine is free for Everyone? You know that’s kinda bullshit, right?
Jerusalem: This week The Times of Israel reported a mini-scandal rocking the nation: the Ministry of Absorption created make-believe Olim for their Social Media Campaigns. That’s right, the Ministry in charge of immigration had a hard time finding actual….. immigrants. Which is weird, because we’re not shy about sharing things. Such as how much better the Banking was in our country, how the country isn’t doing enough for us, and how we’d already be multi-trillionaires if we hadn’t made Aliyah. So it’s not like it would be hard to find us, seeing how Extra we can be when it comes to complaining. But apparently the Absorption Ministry wanted Olim who wouldn’t spend the whole article whining about the lack of Ziploc bags and a real Apple Store, and instead wanted something more positive. C’mon that’s nuts, right? Yet it was just these incredibly suspicious positive attitudes that first alerted the Olim Community to this shady enterprise. The Daily Freier set out to ask our fellow immigrants of the exact moment that they detected the Government’s Fake Online Olim.
“So I was reading this one profile about a guy, and it said he had a real job.” explained an Olah Hadasha named Jess. “Major Red Flag, right? So I tried to CyberStalk him and I couldn’t find any history of him getting banned from Keep Olim. That’s when I called BS. Also, none of them had ever begged me to bring a bag of their winter clothes back on my next flight from New York.”
“When the Olah from Britain said she had more than two Israeli friends? Oh Please.” scoffed a recent immigrant named Tali. “It’s just so obvious. I mean, she never even mentioned the time she tried to sell a futon on Secret Tel Aviv and got a bunch of really sketchy DM’s from Israeli guys. Plus, her name wasn’t Rachel or Sarah.”
“There was just so much lying.” complained David from Boston. “The Lone Soldier who talked about buying furniture at IKEA? They should have started small, maybe with a Lone Soldier who doesn’t mooch your groceries.”
UPDATE: The Daily Freier wants the Big Money Machers at Misrad HaKlita to know that for the right price, we will create convincingly fake Aliyah Blogs that will fool the most cynical Olim. We know how to do this. Trust us.
Tel Aviv: In a scenario described by IDF veterans as “shockingly realistic” and “haunting“, the IDF Cosplayer from Japan just went onto Social Media to ask for free stuff. Siggchi is a Japanese college student who dresses up like a Lieutenant in the IDF’s Kfir Brigade and has become somewhat of a minor celebrity here in Israel. As for mooching free stuff, Lone Soldiers in the IDF have a reputation of being, umm…. frugal. In addition, Lone Soldiers are not shy about asking for stuff from the General Public. So it just made sense that Siggchi would take his cosplaying “to the next level” and start mooching free shit like a True Chayal Boded. The Daily Freier talked to several Lone Soldiers to get the rest of the story.
“When Siggchi asked for a PlayStation on Secret Tel Aviv, I mean, it just felt like I was back in the Paratroopers….. it was that real.” explained former Lone Soldier Jered B. “Hey, are you going to finish that Shawarma or what?”
“This guy Siggchi is for real.” enthused Armored Corps veteran Doron S. “I mean, he takes all his meals for free in the Lone Soldier Center over by Nordau.” Doron lowered his voice to a whisper. “My friends say that once he finishes his pretend-IDF service, he’s taking a pretend-backpacking trip to India.”
Yet it’s not only Siggchi’s Lone Soldier-caliber freebie detection skills that has impressed the veteran community. “He speaks better Hebrew than most of the Anglo Olim in my old unit.” noted Linda D. “Hey, do you think he also lies his ass off about his job when he hits on Taglit girls?”
When asked for a response to Sigcchi’s cosplay, an IDF spokesperson said, “I’m not doing this.” (Note: THIS REALLY HAPPENED).
UPDATE: As the Daily Freier went to print, we learned that Sigcchi intended to switch units and was now inhaling magic marker fumes “to feel more like a Golani“.
Tel Aviv, HaKirya: The Israel Defense Force’s Headquarters is currently in crisis mode as hundreds of critical installations across the country remain unmanned following an Iranian cyber-attack. The attack took the form of several thousand fake posts on the popular Facebook page “Secret Tel Aviv” offering a wealth of items “free to a Lone Soldier”. The Daily Freier attended a hastily put-together News Conference at their Tel Aviv Headquarters.
“The current condition is critical.This is worse than the time Hamas catfished us with fake profiles of hot Israeli women. explained IDF Spokesperson Major Guy C. “Every Lone Soldier is currently away from their Duty Station, running around Greater Tel Aviv trying to score their free PlayStation, coffee tables, Televisions, refrigerators and futons. This attack affected hundreds of soldiers. Oh and also a robot from the Bomb Squad.”
To make matters worse, the Lone Soldiers temporarily crashed the Secret Tel Aviv server while posting hundreds of requests for the free use of a vehicle in order to go pick up the make-believe free stuff they believed they were getting, temporarily depriving the City of crowd-sourced relationship advice, amateur insect identification, and people selling MidBurn tickets.
Yet while the IDF truly faces a crisis, the Daily Freier wanted to reach out to the Chayal Boded Community and find out just how they were affected by this giant balagan on a personal level. An American Lone Soldier named ‘Danny’ described his pain. “When I found out someone was giving away old PS3 games, I dropped everything and hitchhiked from my base in the Golan to Givatayim.” The Daily Freier asked Danny how he felt about Iran’s trickery. “Honestly, I feel betrayed. I mean, I didn’t even get any free games.” Danny then abruptly got up from his chair and moved quickly to the door. “Hey, sorry but I gotta go. A woman on Ibn Gavriol says she’s moving back to the UK and giving away a guitar, yoga mat, ramen noodles, and a coffee pot. And I need to move fast.”
Tel Aviv, Allenby: A robot from the Israel Defense Force’s Explosive Ordnance Demolition (EOD) unit has just posted on the popular Facebook page “Secret Tel Aviv” asking for a lot of free stuff ”because he’s a Lone Soldier“. Lone Soldiers, or those who come to Israel to serve in the IDF without their family, tend to get a bit of help from the Community. But some guys take the whole thing a bit far. The Daily Freier spoke with the robot, known to his friends as “Udi”, in a cafe on Dizengoff Street as he enjoyed a well-deserved 48 Hour Pass with friends.
“Look, I don’t want to be pushy.” explained Udi. “So I just asked for some pots & pans, a bed-frame, a bicycle, a washing machine, some furniture, a Playstation, and an espresso maker. Oh yeah, and a hat. I definitely need a hat.”
While the idea of a robot posting online might strike some as being bizarre, Secret Tel Aviv appears to have accepted Udi as one of their own. “Udi has adjusted well to our community.” explained Secret Tel Aviv founder Jonny Stark. “In fact, last week some of his female robot friends submitted his photo to our site in an attempt to do a bit of amateur matchmaking ‘because he’s a really nice guy‘. Also just this morning, he joined a post concerning a used futon for sale and within 5 minutes someone had already accused him of hating Israel. Finally, he submitted a question about how to get medical marijuana without a doctor’s prescription, but added ‘asking for a friend‘ to the end of the post. You know, normal Secret Tel Aviv stuff.”
Update: In late breaking news, Udi the robot has just sent a sleazy Direct Message to the apartment-hunting Norwegian woman on Secret Tel Aviv who somehow thought it would be a good idea to add a selfie to her post.
Ra’anananadingdong: Israelis were frightened to their very core this week with the release of a chilling dystopian novel depicting life in a future Israel that is run by Anglo Olim. The novel, entitled “Lo Hevanti” (second choice: “Avshar Mayim?“), tells the story of an Israel in the year 2021 that is completely run by recent immigrants from the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, South Africa, and Australia. The story takes place two years after all the other Israelis got so tired of listening to Anglos tell them how much better we would run things if we were in charge…..that they all just threw up their hands and told us to have at it. And the whole balagan turns into “The Road” by Cormac McCarthy. Except with better lunch options. Anyhoo, the Daily Freier sat in on a Literary Salon in Neve Tzedek as they reviewed “Lo Hevanti” and discussed how scared they were after reading it.
The Salon’s hostess started off the conversation. “So the Anglos rule that any argument on Secret Tel Aviv that lasts longer than 10 threads must then go to the Knesset for resolution…… and then the Knesset passes a law outlawing anyone from buying or selling dogs…..it just seemed so….so…. real. Also, when they got Nefesh B’ Nefesh to amend the Basic Law so it now said that ‘Everything must be convenient.’….I couldn’t sleep that night.”
Finally, Florentin poet Meirav spoke up. “Hey! No spoilers! I’ve only read up to the point where the Prime Minister orders MK Tuttle-Singer to stop blogging while a motion is up for debate on the Knesset Floor.”
Bucks County, Pennsylvania: With Yom Haatzmaut (Israeli Independence Day) right around the corner, Israelis are celebrating another milestone: the 6th Anniversary of Philadelphia-area resident Jeremy S. being “just about to make Aliyah“. Jeremy, a 29-year-old technical writer and musician, has been “like almost ready” to make the return to Zion since attending a Matisyahu concert in April of 2011 “that like really changed the way I look at life“. The Daily Freier spoke with Jeremy about his on-again/off-again longing for Eretz Yisrael.
Jeremy is already on his 3rd Aliyah Counselor, with his first Aliyah counselor rapidly approaching mandatory retirement age. Additionally, half of the people in his original planned Aliyah group have already integrated into society and become so Israeli that in the Spring of 2015 they moved to Berlin for economic reasons.
Jeremy’s Rabbi in suburban Philly has so far written six letters to the Israeli Government attesting to Jeremy’s membership in the Covenant of Abraham. Rabbi Stanley Green, of Congregation Agudath Israel, has become so exasperated with the process that for the latest request he simply took a sheet of Synagogue letterhead and scrawled with a pen “Not again! He’s still Jewish!”
Jeremy’s gutsy almost-decision has affected his family as well. His mom Linda joined us via Skype after we helped explain “what all of the buttons on the computer do” and shared her concerns. “As a parent, you never stop worrying about your kids.” Linda explained. “So with the crazy situation over there in the Middle East, and Jeremy almost sort of moving there, well you can imagine my almost sort of anxiety. I’m just concerned that if Matisyahu’s band or those nice girls in A-WA tour the East Coast again this Summer, that Jeremy might take the next step and schedule another Aliyah appointment in Manhattan with Nefesh B’Nefesh. But I’m pretty sure Nefesh started screening his calls some time in 2014.”
Reaction to Jeremy’s slow-motion-Aliyah within the Greater Tel Aviv Community have been rather mixed. North Tel Aviv resident Mark S. explained. “So he subletted my apartment in July 2015 because he was ‘this close‘ to moving here for good. And at the end he asked if he could leave a bag in my apartment because he was ‘like definitely making Aliyah after the High Holidays.‘ I guess the joke is on me because he didn’t specify the exact year of the High Holidays after which he would make Aliyah. Also I checked the bag last week and it contains parts of a tent, a tea set, a pair of drawstring linen trousers, some old vitamins, and spices from the Shuk.”
While Jeremy remains on the fence in terms of Aliyah, he has not allowed his cold feet to limit his social activism on behalf of the Almost Maybe Possible Future Olim Community. He started a Facebook group called “Keep Almost Olim Almost in Israel” dedicated to the unique needs and issues facing Almost Olim, to include the lack of support provided by Nefesh B’Nefesh for those who have been about to make Aliyah since Obama’s first term. Jeremy is also contemplating going onto Secret Tel Aviv and asking for future free stuff for when he becomes a Lone Soldier.
Golan Heights, Israel (Sorry Bashar): The mysterious dark pillar of clouds that stood between an IDF patrol and ISIS on the Golan Heights last week already has big plans for what’s he’s going to do after the army. The vertical cumulus cloud, named ‘Boaz’, said he is ‘counting down the days‘ until the end of his enlistment, at which point he and some of his army buddies plan to go on a 3 month trip to India and Nepal that he says “is going to be sick“, “really crazy” and “just out of control“. Boaz, who comes from a family of storm clouds from outside of Israel and therefore qualifies as a Chayal Boded or “Lone soldier”, finishes his enlistment next May. The Daily Freier Caught up with Boaz on Thursday night at a bar on Dizengoff street as he enjoyed a weekend pass with a few of the guys from his unit.
Boaz told us that they chose this particular bar on Dizengoff “because one of the guys in my squad said he had a bit of luck here“. When we arrived, Boaz and his buddies spotted several women from a “MASA” exchange program sitting by themselves and they quickly introduced themselves and sat down at their table. Soon, Boaz stretched out, exhaled, leaned back in his chair and nonchalantly wrapped his cloud arms behind the back of two young women as he told them stories about his Army duty and how just this week he “like saved my entire platoon from ISIS“.
Later, Boaz admitted that while he is getting a lot of credit for last week’s encounter, he has also gotten in some trouble during his enlistment. Last year, he received non-judicial punishment from his company commander after a prank he played against the Mossad Spy Vulture went horribly wrong. “That bird is just an idiot. So I created an updraft of hot air while he was flying. Unfortunately, that accidentally forced him into Lebanese air space where he was captured. Last I checked he was home free and had joined ‘Breaking the Silence‘ or something. And I got 30 days confined to base.”
While Boaz can’t get out of the army fast enough, he also mentioned that after India he may want to go back to school, get a meteorology degree, and come back as a weather officer. “I don’t think they can say no. I mean I don’t just know about weather. I AM weather.”
But for now, Boaz just wants to dream about what his trip will be like. “Just hang out on the beach in Goa and maybe smoke a bit. Rent a moped. Go to an ashram and just chill. Maybe go backpacking. I actually have some cousins over there who are cirrus clouds, so it will be nice to see them again.” Boaz also explained that on this trip being a cloud would have its advantages. “Sometimes hostels won’t rent to Israeli backpackers because…..well I guess that’s because they once rented to Israeli backpackers…… But I can just show them my second passport from Cloud and everything will be chill.”