Weekly Quiz


Superman is often described as being Jewish, or at least being based on Jewish themes. Which of the following is NOT a part of that narrative?

A. In order to save him, Superman's parents sent him from his home planet into space in a small capsule, paralleling the story of Moses' mother, who placed him in a basket in the Nile River to save his life.

B. Superman's mission was summed up by the words, "Truth, Justice, and the American Way," which was a variation of Rabbi Shimon ben Gamliel's statement that the world endures on three things: Justice, Truth, and Peace.

C. Superman's original name was Kal-El, which is Hebrew for Voice of G-d.

D. When Superman, as Kal-El, landed on earth, he was taken in by a kind family, the Kents, and he then lived a double life as the mild mannered Clark Kent and the hero Superman. Similarly, baby Moses was taken in by the kind Batya, daughter of the Pharaoh, and he lived an assumed life in the royal palace while later showing himself to be the hero of the Jewish people.

E. Kryptonite, the green substance that was the only thing that could harm Superman, was based on Dr. Seuss's Green Eggs and Ham.

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That’s One Small Step

Forty five years ago this week, Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin landed on the moon. An Israeli company, SpaceIL, is competing to win the Google Lunar X prize that requires a private company to land a craft on the moon and then travel at least 500 meters. What unique technology will SpaceIL be the first to utilize?

A. The Israeli craft will be launched and guided to the moon using the technology developed by Israel to guide the missiles fired by the Iron Dome defense system.

B. Rather than navigating the lunar surface on wheels, the Israeli craft will travel across the moon's surface using the patented Etz Chaim system. The craft will rest upon a flat platform with rollers on each end that alternately furl and unfurl, thus propelling the craft forward.

C. The Israeli space craft will navigate using SLAM technology (Simultaneous Localization And Mapping), which allows the craft to navigate in space, where GPS technology is not available.

D. The Israeli space craft will navigate using SHALOM technology (Simultaneous High Altitude Localization and Observational Mapping), which allows the craft to peacefully navigate in space, where GPS technology is not available.

E. To ensure against landing on an uneven rocky surface (a problem that almost doomed Armstrong and Aldrin's Eagle lunar module) the Israeli craft will land safely by first ejecting a protective padding upon which it will set down. The padding was designed based on bulletproof vests developed by the Israeli military.

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Iron Dome

Which of the following is true regarding Israel's Iron Dome anti-missile defense system?

A. The system was developed by Jewish engineers who fled Iran after the Islamic revolution in 1979.

B. Some of the missile's components were derived from a toy car sold by Toys"R"Us.

C. After the Israeli government rejected the original proposal for Iron Dome as unfeasible, the project developers raised the initial funding for the defense system through a Kickstarter campaign.

D. The original name for the system was the Super Dome, but this was changed when Israel was sued by the New Orleans Saints.

E. Amazon discontinued a drone delivery testing program in Israel after an Iron Dome missile destroyed one of the prototype drones.

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Reb Zalman,  z"l

Which of the following statements about Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi is true?

A. After taking LSD with Timothy Leary in 1962, he told Leary, "This is better than schnapps.”

B. Along with Mick Jagger, Marianne Faithfull, Eric Clapton, Keith Moon, the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi and others, he was one of the background singers seated around the Beatles during their live worldwide broadcast of the song All You Need Is Love in 1967.

C. In 1986 he changed the name of his organization from B'nai Or Religious Fellowship ("Sons of Light") to P'nai Or Religious Fellowship ("Faces of Light") after being threatened with a lawsuit by B'nai B'rith for copyright infringement.

DAfter meeting him at the Woodstock Festival in 1969, Joni Mitchell wrote this lyric about Reb Zalman: "I came upon a child of God/He was walking along the road/And I asked him where are you going/And this he told me/I'm going on down to Yasgur's farm/I'm going to join in a rock 'n' roll band/I'm going to camp out on the land/I'm going to try an' get my soul free.”

E. When he first met the Dalai Lama in 1990, he greeted him by singing, "Hello Dalai. This is Zolly, Dalai."

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