By Yekutiel Bornstein and Mark Levy
Last Updated 11/15/2018 at 3:00 PM
The Technion, Haifa: Scientists at Israel’s prestigious Technion are currently hard at work attempting to solve one of the World’s most intractable mysteries. Cold fusion? Nope, they’ve already found a source of renewable energy. The mystery of the weird posts on popular community page Secret Tel Aviv? Nope, they’ve solved that too! Trying to figure out why the Homeland of the Jewish People still has not even made a bagel as good as….. ummm… Dunkin Donuts? Yes! And in terms of “Problems facing self-absorbed Ashkenazi Olim from North America“, this situation is basically our Code-Red Alert. So it makes sense that the greatest scientific minds in the Jewish world would seek to tackle this problem. The Daily Freier went up to Haifa to figure out just how we will solve this Crisis.
The project’s lead scientist, Dr. Shmuel C. greeted the Daily Freier and quickly ushered us into their experimental “Bagel Lab“, which looked a lot like a Queens, New York bakery circa 1981, complete with linoleum floors, fluorescent lights, and a set of bells on the door that jingled when you opened it. In fact, just to really nail the whole effect, they built a Carvel Ice Cream shop in the adjoining lab. “We know that the Startup Nation can bring a good bagel to Israel.” explained Dr. Shmuel. “I mean, how hard could this possibly be? Look, we built a high-speed rail line already and it will take you non-stop from Jerusalem to….wait…. never mind…but still, we got this!”
The Daily Freier then sampled some of the prototypes, and they were just as good as any bagel we’ve had so far in Israel, meaning they tasted like the foam from your couch cushion dipped in sesame seeds. “Do you like it?” asked Dr. Shmuel. “The same expert who designed this prototype previously helped McDonalds-Israel Division attain their amazing tasting burgers!” Or course he did.
Trying to lend a hand, the Daily Freier asked Dr. Shmuel some questions about their process: “So when you boil the bagel before you…..” but he quickly cut us off and said “Wait…..Boil the bagel before you bake it? That doesn’t even make any sense.”
By Mark Levy and Yuval Weiss
Last Updated 10/19/2018 at 6:00 PM
Tel Aviv, Derech Menachem Begin: Today the Start-Up Nation’s Ministry of the Interior revealed its new slogan: “Better than a Saudi Consulate!“, reminding its customers that despite long lines, unannounced closures, and indifferent service…… your chances of getting taken out by a Saudi hit squad are extremely low. The Daily Freier attended a press conference at their Tel Aviv office after receiving a press invite via fax.
“We are very proud of our customer service standards.” explained Ministry of the Interior spokesperson Nava K. “After negotiations between our Union and the Government broke down last week, we staged an unannounced work slowdown…. But Hey! All of our customers survived! Only in Israel!”
The Daily Freier asked Nava if, much like Israeli carrier El Al, the Ministry was perhaps suffering from low expectations. But she was insistent. “If Mr. Khashoggi had come to our office instead of the Istanbul Consulate, he would still be alive! Of course, he might not have gotten service yet because our computer skipped the number he had taken from the kiosk…. but one should not be too picky. Welcome to Israel!”
As the Press Conference came to an end, Nava announced that the Interior Ministry has begun an Efficiency Campaign for speedier customer service….. led by experts from Israel’s High Speed Rail network.
By Mark Levy
Last Updated 10/19/2018 at 6:00 PM
Jerusalem Navon Station: There were cheers and celebrations today in Start-Up Nation after a High Speed Train came, like, “this close” to making the Tel Aviv-Jerusalem run quicker than a “very fast” sherut. You see, the High Speed rail is something that Israel is quite proud of. Even though it took 18 years to build just 50 kilometers of line. And you have to switch trains at the Airport. And the first leg is on a normal train. And you are supposed to make reservations on line. But they don’t check. And the train drops you in the Jerusalem railroad station approximately 3 Gazillion meters underground. And the escalator ride to the top lasts longer than some Tel Aviv relationships. But anyhoo, today the ride was extra fast. So fast in fact that there were moments when it appeared that the train might overtake the Sherut (a shared minibus taxi) that had left Tel Aviv’s Central Bus Station at the same time that the train had left Tel Aviv’s Savidor Station. The Daily Freier went up to Jerusalem to get all the facts.
“We are quite proud of our High Speed rail’s performance today.” explained Israel Rail spokesperson Sarit K. “Our riders got here almost as quickly as people who rode in a van from the 1980’s.” Sarit continued. “In addition, we feel it isn’t very fair to make the comparison. I mean, we were up against Moti, one of their more aggressive Sherut drivers.” Sarit dropped her voice to a whisper. “I heard that he didn’t even stop at all of the red lights either.“
The Daily Freier asked Sarit if maybe High Speed Rail would aim for a higher metric than beating a minibus. “Today we almost beat a Sherut. Who knows, maybe in 2019 we will almost beat the Number 480 Bus.”
UPDATE: In an effort to make their High Speed Rail even more competitive with traditional forms of mass transit, Israel Rail announced that all trains will now play tinny high-pitched Israeli music from the 1970’s out of busted out speakers, display a weathered photo of Rabbi Ovadia Yosef on the dashboard, and have an old compact disc hanging from the conductor’s rear view mirror.
By Mark Levy
Last Updated 8/9/2018 at 6:15 PM
Tel Aviv: Security experts are in a state of alarm today after an Israeli man successfully built a gun using a 3-D Fax Machine. Tel Aviv inventor Udi R. posted a YouTube video last night demonstrating how he built a 9MM pistol using the controversial “3-D Fax Technology“. While the rest of the world sort of “moved on” from Fax machines some time around the final season of “Sex and the City“, here in Start-Up Nation the fax machine is still humming along and is often the only way a government office will accept documents! In fact, Israelis have found many versatile uses for the fax machine, so it only makes sense that someone would use it to build a 3-D gun. The Daily Freier spoke with Udi about his newfound notoriety.
“The Fax machine has fascinated me, ever since the city building inspector accused me of not living in my apartment as we spoke…in my apartment.” explained Udi as we sipped Kafe Kar in a North Tel Aviv cafe. “Then I faxed my lease to his office and he was happy and left me alone after that. So I thought to myself… This device? It’s magical! It can do anything! And then I started working on building a 3-D Fax.”
Experts voiced their concerns about Udi’s invention, with American gun control groups calling for a ban on 3-D faxes, once they are able to find a working fax machine.
Udi says his next project is to fax himself a 200 gram block of decent cheese from Europe that doesn’t cost 80 Shekels.
By Mark Levy
Last Updated 7/30/2018 at 2:50 PM
Tel Aviv, The Old North: A disillusioned recent immigrant to Israel is now attributing his entire decision-matrix to stay here on the return of KFC to Israel next March. American Oleh Hadash Zachary F. has not had an easy time in Israel so far. Apart from getting paid $10 an hour for a job that required a college degree, Zachary has also gotten screwed by various cab drivers, gotten lost in the cavernous Dizengoff Center Mall, endured a tragic breakup with a French Olah, gotten trapped in an elevator, and endured the ridicule of his building superintendent for having crappy Hebrew skills. But Zachary still holds out hope, and is currently clinging to KFC’s planned March 2019 opening in Be’er Sheva as the moment his luck will turn around. “If I can just hold out until March, everything will be better. Regular, Extra Crispy, a giant bucket of tenders. Life will just be…better.“
Reactions in the Olim community were mixed, with many mocking Zachary’s optimism. “Really?” mused an Ulpan classmate of Zachary’s named Rachel or Sarah. “He’s staying here for a KFC. What a Loser……OMG OMG I need to go, the new Burger King on Ibn Gavriol closes in 10 minutes and I haven’t been there in 3 days!”
But Zachary remains undeterred. “This could really make my Aliyah experience work out. I mean, I may even move to Be’er Sheva just to be closer to KFC! I could even do the Nefesh B’ Nefesh ‘Go South’ program! Or get a job in Tech!”
(photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
By Mark Levy
Last Updated 7/18/2018 at 1:50 PM
Tel Aviv: OMG this Tama-38 thing is incredible! So this is how it works: A contractor moves all the people in your building into a different apartment for a year or two, knocks down the building, and rebuilds it! You come home to a modern apartment! The contractor builds two additional floors and gets to sell 4 flats. You get an apartment with parking, less mold, and a real kitchen! The city increases the supply of available housing. Everyone’s a winner! Only in Israel!
I mean, it’s really Too easy! We just have to get the 12 Jews who own the apartments here to agree on a multi-year complex financial agreement! What could go wrong? I mean we just have to get together the guy on the first floor who feeds the cats along with the family on the third floor who hates that he feeds cats. And the guy who does his daily motorcycle maintenance in front of your building. Also the family with the mysterious Sephardic cooking smells. And the crazy lady from the ground floor who left her gas on all weekend once.
Let’s not be pessimistic. We’re Jewish, we can do this! It’s just like in synagogue when we agreed to change the time of morning Minyan to…. wait a second, actually we got in a huge fight and half the guys aren’t speaking to the other half anymore…. OK OK…. we’re a miracle in the Desert! We can make this work just like they do in the Knesset! But we are definitely going to get this done. Maybe just to speed things up we could bring in Efficiency Experts from the Misrad HaPnim!
So when is it going to happen? Oh I don’t know, what’s the weather like in Gehinnom this week? Cold? Ha Ha! Just a joke! Actually, you can expect an invite to our renovated flat’s housewarming just in time for the Hanin Zoabi/Matisyahu reggae duet!
But definitely before Moschiach!
(photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
By Mark Levy
Last Updated 6/20/2018 at 5:10 PM
Tel Aviv: Startup Nation has given the world some amazing things: Waze, the cherry tomato, Gal Gadot, the thumb drive. But for every great Israeli idea, rest assured they have come up with some failures. And here they are: the 10 biggest flops of Israeli tech!
- Ara-Mazing: Translate your sexts into Aramaic!
- E-Z Steal: Choose the most convenient time & place to have your bike stolen!
- Gaydar Tel Aviv
- Misrad HaTindr: Match with someone who is also waiting in line at the Ministry of the Interior!
- John Kerry Meetup!: Connects you with other fans of the former Secretary of State in Israel
- AngloWhine: Deletes any texts from your Anglo friends when they’re complaining about something
- Pokémon Pee: An app that finds you a sidewalk in Tel Aviv where nobody has peed yet
- Tag-Lit: Lets Israeli men track the real-time location of every Birthright bus in the country
- Matkot Simulator: It’s as if there’s a matkot game being played one meter away from you!
- The Dizengoff Center Navigation App (Oops! This really exists!)