People I admire: Casey Neistat

Maybe a blog post every other day makes more sense than daily blogging…

Anyway, as I give some thought towards getting back into my personal blog, I’ve made a short list of themes I could write about, hoping the added structure will help keep me going.

Here are the themes:

  1. How I work – entrepreneurship and work
  2. Ideology & philosophy – what rules I live by and what I (don’t) believe in
  3. Health – mental and physical
  4. People I admire and why

So let’s begin with Casey Neistat in the theme of people I admire and why.

Casey Neistat…

I kept hearing his weird name from my sisters and nephew who are obsessed with him. One of said sisters is 40 years old and is one of Casey’s biggest fans along with thousands of teenagers. But now that I’m totally into him too – I’m currently in the process of watching all 500-ish of his daily vlogs – I can safely say that he is amazing and worth watching no matter your age.

So, Casey is the first person I’m going to talk about for one very good reason: He is the person inspiring me to get back into my personal writing. Here are the main reasons I love his videos and respect him very much:

He’s principled

He has his principles and seems to stick to them. Here are a few I’ve noticed:

No matter all the opportunities he gets and the challenges of being recognized all over NYC (and often beyond as well), he (almost) never puts people down. He has talked about “bullying” a few times and strongly opposes it. He did one video where he spoke up against the people who bully him in the comments of his videos but I can’t seem to find it right now.

Second, he seems to know what he’s comfortable sharing and he never shares more than that. Namely, he doesn’t get too personal. For example, although his family is in his vlog, I feel like I know almost nothing about their relationships.

He works hard. In a way this isn’t a principle because it seems to be in his blood but it still is inspiring to see someone consistently work so hard. For example, it took him anywhere between 2-7 hours to edit each daily vlog. That’s insane.

He’s amazing at what he does

He is an unbelievable videographer and editor and he is extremely eloquent and well-thought out. It’s actually daunting how talented he is but no one should compare themselves to Casey Neistat because he’s sort of a machine reincarnated as a human (watch him live his life for a bit and I think you might agree). Anyway, he’s unbelievably talented at what he does.

He is inspiring

I have a lot of emotional ups and downs. When I’m down I could feel fearful, sad, tired, hopeless, etc. And I often find that watching a few of Casey’s videos improves my mood. I don’t know why exactly… I think it has something to do with him being very upbeat and creative. But whatever the reason, I find his videos to be helpful to me on an emotional level and I appreciate that so much.

Here is one of Casey’s videos. See what you think:

My favourite latest from the web: National Jew-Graphic, North Korea, glass gem corn and more

The Amazing Rabbis singing Sound of Silence


wait but why about North Korea

I can only imagine that this website is getting a huge amount of traffic. The writer, Tim Urban, creates highly intelligent and laugh-out-loud funny articles on an array of topics. I read an amazing one by him about why my generation is unhappy (I totally got the story he told) and most recently I read a fascinating inside look at the world’s black hole—North Korea. I highly recommend giving this piece the time it necessitates considering all the photos, videos and links.

Read the piece to learn why this video is unbelievably disturbing.

And while you’re on the site, don’t forget to check out the hysterical About page.

The guy leaving a voice mail message about a car accident

Just press play and weep from laughter.

Random people conducting an orchestra

I must say this video seems to confirm all of our suspicion, that orchestras really do not need a conducter all the time.

Improve Everywhere had a small orchestra sit on a sidewalk in New York city and put up a conductor’s stand that anyone was invited to come up and use. Sweetness ensued.

Glass gem corn

You won’t believe that this is real corn but it is. There are people who are expert glass gem corn growers. It’s breathtaking.

Take a look.

Colour footage from the Jewish quarter in Warsaw 

I’ve come to believe that one of the things that inhibits us from getting the Holocaust, or many other events in history, is the lack of colour in the photos of that time.

Here is a short movie with footage of Jews in Warsaw. It’s lovely and terribly sad all at once.

National Jew-Graphic Original Film

Such a cute video about Israeli religious and secular.

Kids performing a song with cup for percussion

Click to watch it on Facebook. It’s amazing!

Twenty four hour screening of Christian Marclay’s The Clock

A good piece of art absorbs you, making you forget about space and time.

Except Christian Marclay’s The Clock which doesn’t let you forget about time for a second.

photo source
photo source

The Clock (2010) is a movie that directly relates to the exact time in which the piece is being screened. In other words, sit in the movie theatre at 3:03am and the scenes you’ll see are from many movies where someone references that time or a clock is seen showing  3:03am.

This editorial feat (to be particularly appreciated by anyone who has ever edited a movie) is a 24-hour movie made up of thousands of excerpts from movies across different cultures and eras.

During work breaks at the Israel Museum, I take the opportunity to visit The Clock. I walk up to the little theatre created for this piece, sit on one of the comfy white couches set out facing the screen, and allow myself to not get lost in time but to definitely get pulled into the story lines woven into one another, with music from a black-and-white movie overlapping into a colour film, a woman looking up in one movie to a clock tower in a different movie. And on and on.

Every time I’ve gone it has (purposely) been a different time of day. My favourite so far has been high noon. This is usually a dramatic time of day in cinema and it is a touching one in Marclay’s piece. Suspenseful music plays as people across many years and nations wait expectantly for the news or event to transpire at this auspicious hour. At noon, clocks around the world and over the course of cinema history chime in unison.

I always go in for five or 10 minutes at a time, knowing it’s unnecessary for me to look at my watch. We’re so used to losing track of time while watching a movie but here you always know the exact time. It’s the dissonance of getting pulled into a piece of art while simultaneously being reminded every few seconds exactly when you are in your real life.

Special 24-hour viewing

The movie which is normally only accessible during regular museum hours is open for a 24-hour viewing over Sukkot (2013). From 2pm on Tuesday, September 24 until 2pm Wednesday, September 25, there is one complete 24-hour screening. Yes, you can come hang out in the theatre (for free) at 3am, 5am, whenever.

Here are more details about the exhibition.
Here are more details about the 24-hour screening.

Will you venture out to see parts of The Clock that most people never get to experience?

Opera in the Park in Tel Aviv!

Last year I went to this. It was Carmen in the park. Although the company was very nice, I found the miles of walking, no normal bathrooms for many, many hours and ladies yelling at the top of their lungs (not to mention, about ridiculous things), not so enjoyable. (The yelling was the actual opera, in case I wasn’t clear.)

Even so, the Tel Aviv annual Opera in the Park is very very popular and you might want to consider doing this, at least as a once in a lifetime experience.

Carmen in the park, Tel Aviv, July 2010 (photo by me)


  1. Bring water.
  2. Bring toilet paper (not that you’ll necessarily find somewhere comfortable to use it).
  3. Plan to spend some money on snacks – it’s the best part of the experience!
  4. Bring earplugs in case you can’t take the opera.
  5. Bring someone to make out with (well, that is what the couple in front of us did).
  6. Don’t read the translation if stupid stories and bad decisions (by the characters) can drive you mad.
  7. Bring a mat/blanket.
  8. Come early-ish.
  9. Don’t sing along with the music.
  10. Guess if I like opera.
And, of course, enjoy!