Agenda for Dec. 9 Membership Meeting

Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2015, 7:30 p.m.
Home of Bill Sperling, 8029 Hemingway Avenue, San Diego

NOTE: Some email notices mistakenly said the meeting would be on December 10th.   In fact the meeting will be on December 9th.

I. Call to order and Around-the-Room Introductions — Bill Sperling, evening’s chairman
An attendance sheet will be passed around as an official document. Everyone should make certain to print and sign their names, with phone numbers and Emails. Those in attendance who have not yet become members may make their $25 checks out this evening to Tifereth Israel Men’s Club. Only paid up members may vote.

II. Nominations and Elections
In the hope that a new board can take office on January 1, 2016, the following is proposed:

(A) Nominations will be taken until Dec. 15 for two year terms for the following offices: President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Immediate Past President {this office is filled ex officio}; and four Members of the Executive Committee, for a total of 9 committee members.

(B) Phone or email balloting of paid-up members will be conducted thereafter, with results to be announced December 22.

(C) A member in good standing who is not seeking office shall serve as the judge of the election results. Votes shall be sent to this man via email or by telephone. The volunteer for this position is ________________.

MOTION TO APPROVE ITEM II BY ___________________
SECOND BY ______________________________
VOTE TOTAL: ___________IN FAVOR; __________ Opposed; __________ Abstain___________.

III Bylaws
The bylaws have been submitted in written form to the organizational meeting. They may be amended or adopted in full, whatever be the pleasure of voting members.

MOTION TO APPROVE ITEM III BY ___________________
SECOND BY ______________________________
VOTE TOTAL: ___________IN FAVOR; __________ Opposed; __________ Abstain___________.

IV Dues
As stated in the Bylaws, dues which are now $25 per year, will increase to $36 per year, double chai, for Calendar 2017.

MOTION TO APPROVE ITEM IV BY ___________________
SECOND BY ______________________________
VOTE TOTAL: ___________IN FAVOR; __________ Opposed; __________ Abstain___________.

V Expenses
Funds raised by the Men’s Club currently are held in trust by the financial officer of the synagogue. Inquiries should be made whether this is the most efficient method for handling funds. Should the Men’s Club keep its own checking account?

In either event, any expense in the amount over $500 shall require prior approval by a vote of the Executive Committee.

MOTION TO APPROVE ITEM V BY ___________________
SECOND BY ______________________________
VOTE TOTAL: ___________IN FAVOR; __________ Opposed; __________ Abstain___________.

VI Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs – The President and the Immediate Past President shall be authorized to negotiate with the Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs the settlement of any debts and the continuation of TIS Men’s Club membership in that organization.

MOTION TO APPROVE ITEM VI BY ___________________
SECOND BY ______________________________
VOTE TOTAL: ___________IN FAVOR; __________ Opposed; __________ Abstain___________.

VII Men’s Club Projects and Committee Assignments
The Men’s Club will undertake the following projects, and such other projects that may be agreed to by the Executive Committee

Whenever there is an event, a chair will be appointed along with a minimum of two assistants.

Events shall be coordinated on the calendar with the TIS office staff.

(A) The Religious Affairs Committee duties shall include but not be limited to:

(1) KERUV—The Men’s Club will continue promoting outreach to intermarried couples, helping non-Jewish partners to feel warmly welcomed as an essential part of the congregation, which Phil Snyder has agreed to chair

(2) World Wide Wrap: The Men’s Club will coordinate a program with the Torah School to show students and others how to properly wrap themselves in tefillin. Norm Katz will chair this.

(3) Men’s Club Shabbat – The Men’s Club shall organize and lead at least one Shabbat service per year. Norm Katz will chair this.

SECOND BY ______________________________
VOTE TOTAL: ___________IN FAVOR; __________ Opposed; __________ Abstain___________.

(B) The Membership Committee shall have jurisdiction over recruiting and retaining members to the organization and fundraising events.

(1) Welcoming visitors and prospective members – The Men’s Club will endeavor to have at least one of its members at each Friday evening and Saturday morning Shabbat service to welcome visitors and prospective new members.

(2) Schmooze Lounge – The Men’s Club shall help maintain and actively promote the Schmooze Lounge as a place to socialize at the synagogue.

SECOND BY ______________________________
VOTE TOTAL: ___________IN FAVOR; __________ Opposed; __________ Abstain___________.

(C) The Program Committee shall coordinate a variety of programs including but not limited to speakers at desert receptions, panels, movies, steak night in the sukkah, pancake breakfast for the Torah school, offsite events such as attendance at ballgames, picnics, hikes to Mission Trails and elsewhere, museum trips and lunch in Balboa park, bike rides, and the like.

SECOND BY ______________________________
VOTE TOTAL: ___________IN FAVOR; __________ Opposed; __________ Abstain___________.

(D) Communications Committee – The Men’s Club has its own website ( and needs writers and photographers to keep the membership abreast of various events and the work done by committees. The committee also would be responsible for making certain that announcements go in the Shofar, community newspapers, and in synagogue emails to the overall membership.

SECOND BY ______________________________
VOTE TOTAL: ___________IN FAVOR; __________ Opposed; __________ Abstain___________.

VIII Other Business
At this time anyone in attendance is welcome to bring up any issue he so desires for consideration by the assembled membership.

IX Meeting Dates

The Executive Committee of the TIS Men’s Club will meet on Wednesday, Jan. 13, at a place to be determined by the president. Any member of the Men’s Club may attend an Executive Committee meeting as a non-voting member.

Respectfully submitted,

Don Harrison, acting scribe

Sit down, relax, schmooze a bit!

Bill Sperling, left, and Phil Snyder confer in Tifereth Israel's Schmooze Lounge
Bill Sperling, left, and Phil Snyder confer in Tifereth Israel’s Schmooze Lounge

Imagine yourself with a list of errands, one of which is at or near the synagogue.

Reward yourself by making that errand the last one of the day. That way you’ll have time to take a breath and relax in Tifereth Israel’s Schmooze Lounge.

The what?

The Schmooze Lounge. It’s on the right hand side of the social hall as you enter. Within an area set off by dividers are some couches, a coffee table, Free WiFi, and when set up, a card table.

Before long, we hope to be able to provide visitors to the Schmooze Lounge with coffee, tea and refreshments.

It’s all part of the Men’s Club idea to make the synagogue not only a place to pray, or to attend classes, but also a place where we can relax and– dare we say the word? — “shmooze” with fellow congregants.

We’d love your suggestions for how we can make the Schmooze Lounge even more “hamische” or “homey.”

And if you twist our arms, we’ll even accept monetary contributions to Tifereth Israel for the Schmooze Lounge Fund. Actually, you don’t have to twist them at all!

Men’s Club members invited to Croce Chanukah

Men’s Club members are invited to the Sisterhood’s Chanukah luncheon at 11:30 a.m., Thursday, Dec. 10, to hear Ingrid Croce and her husband Jimmy Rock discuss the biography of the late singer Jim Croce, who was Ingrid’s first husband.

Attendees are asked to bring a new, unwrapped book for preschool or school-aged children.  The books will be distributed by Jewish Family Service.

Luncheon cost is $10.  Reservations may be made on line by clicking here.

Former IDF chief to address Men’s Event Dec. 16

Benny Gantz
Benny Gantz

DEL MAR — Jewish men from throughout San Diego County will attend the free Men’s Event sponsored by the Jewish Federation of San Diego County from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., Wednesday, Dec. 16, at the Del Mar Fairgrounds, 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd.

Featured speaker will be Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz, who served as the 20th Chief of the General Staff of the Israel Defense Force.

The kosher dinner program is underwritten by the Mizel Family Foundation and is cochaired by Jonathan Bell, Simon Vainer, Philip Linse and Gary Levitt.

You may register by clicking here.  If you wish to submit a question for General Gantz, you may click here.

Preceding provided by the Jewish Federation of San Diego

Men’s Club pancakes fuel Torah students

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pancake makers
Pancake makers included, from left, Bill Sperling, Bill Friedel, Norm Katz, Steve Mishek, Marty Marcus, and Bram Rubinstein

By Donald H. Harrison

Donald H. Harrison

SAN DIEGO– Men’s Club members assembled at 7 a.m. in the kosher kitchen of Tifereth Israel Synagogue and, to the theme of “batter up,” the team began preparing pancakes–some with blueberries and bananas; others with chocolate chips, and still more old fashioned and plain.

Mixing their batter thoroughly to eliminate any globs or bubbles, the men plopped the pancake mixture onto individual griddles in an effort to prepare at least 250 of them before the Conservative synagogue’s Torah school students arrived anytime after 8 a.m.with their parents.

From left, Bob Holloway, Bram Rubinstein and Norm Katz
From left, Bob Holloway, Bram Rubinstein and Norm Katz

The question rightfully asked was whether any of the men had the requisite experience to make this breakfast.  Fingers immediately pointed to two men: Norm Katz, who organized the affair, and Bill Sperling. Turns out these two men were relying on East Coast methods.

Explained Katz: “I have been making pancakes for over 30 years. My father had a restaurant that was just open for breakfast and lunch. It was called Lou’s Luncheonette in downtown Philadelphia. I went to work for my dad when I was 12 years old and he didn’t pay me either. … I did everything, mopped the floors, made the sandwiches. I learned how to make eight different types of eggs: over easy, sunny side up, basted, poached, scrambled, omelets, eggs Benedict, and, er, ..” As he struggled to remember the eighth, there was one obvious suggestion for this tough but fair kitchen task master: “Hard-boiled.”

Alan Goldenberg and Bill Friedel observe Bill Sperling's pancake technique
Alan Goldenberg and Bill Friedel observe Bill Sperling’s pancake technique

Sperling, a retired pulmonologist, took a deep breath and recited his credentials: “I worked my way through high school and college as a cook in a luncheonette in the Bronx, N.Y.  I made pancakes, eggs, sandwiches, and to those of you who don’t know what an egg cream is –there is a special way to make an egg cream: you put the milk in first, then the soda water, and then the chocolate syrup comes in on the side and it is Ubet chocolate. It slides down so that you have a white foam on top and the chocolate below it”

The kitchen crew including Bill Friedel, Alan Goldenberg, Bob Holloway, Marty Marcus, Steve Mishek, and Bram Rubinstein all seemed pretty impressed, but the true test of the Men’s Club’s culinary skills was out there in the social hall where the hungry Torah School students and parents were assembling.

Happy customers of the Men's Cloub pancakes
Happy customers of the Men’s Cloub pancakes


“They’re good,” opined student Max Matkovski.

“Pretty good,” suggested his brother Elan Matkovski.

And what was the verdict of the adults?

“Compared to the pancakes we take out of the freezer and pop into the microwave, they were pretty darn good,” said Amy Stanleythe synagogue’s pre-school director.

Any constructive suggestions?

“A warming tray,” said Stanley.

“Yes,” said Susan Levy, known for directing Tifereth Israel’s Purimshpiels. “Also, the blueberries should be warmer.”

Preschool parents Andy and Kelsey Smith and their cousin Erin Papa gave the pancakes fairly high marks.  Andy suggested the option of crepes might be offered, and Erin thought strawberries would make a fine alternative topping.

It was the fifth occasion that the Men’s Club has served a pancake breakfast. In a previous year, the breakfast was in association with “World Wide Wrap” a day on which men around the world learn how to cover an arm and forehead with tefillin.  

The preceding story is reprinted from the Nov. 22, 2015 edition of San Diego Jewish World.

Men’s Club at the Jewish Film Festival Feb. 10

The Men’s Club of Tifereth Israel Synagogue will partner with the San Diego Jewish Film Festival in the presentation at 8 p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 10, of the movie “Encirclements.” As a partner in this presentation, The Men’s Club’s members and guests are entitled to a ticket price of $10.50 on what is normally a $13.75 ticket at the Reading Cinemas Town Square at  4665 Clairemont Drive, San Diego. There is an added $1.50 box office fee per ticket, bringing the total to $12.

Discounted tickets may be pre-paid via the San Diego Jewish Film Festival website at

Prior to the movie, at 6 p.m., Men’s Club members and guests plan to gather at the Sipz Vegetarian Fuzion Cafe, 5501 Clairemont Mesa Blvd, which is about three miles from the theatre. There is a limit of 30 people at this dinner, so early reservations should be made with Don Harrison via

The movie is described as follows by Film Festival organizers:

“Encirclements” is a tender and complex portrait of a working class Israeli family. There is tension in the family as the young son, Aharon, approaches his Bar Mitzvah. He is an only child, much to his parent’s shame, and feels the need to make them happy and proud. Among his friends who are also preparing for their Bar Mitzvahs, he is chosen to carry the Torah scrolls on Simchat Torah. This suddenly elevates Aharon’s status in the neighborhood, an area populated by Mizrahi Jews, because it is believed that he who carries the Torah may ask God for anything on behalf of others. What should be a blessing begins to be a burden as Aharon is besieged by supplicants that include his father.  Then, tragically, as he begins his walk through the village, he drops the Torah. Now the whole village must fast and what was to be the family’s proud moment becomes something else.

During the evening’s movie presentation, Rabbi Michael Berk of Congregation Beth Israel will speak about customs surrounding the handling of the Torah.


Men’s Club Organizational Meeting Dec. 9th

Dr. Bill Sperling will host at his home an organizing meeting of the Tifereth Israel Men’s Club at 7:30 p.m.,  Wednesday, Dec. 9.   He resides at 8029 Hemingway Avenue. (Click here for map).  His phone number, should you get lost, is (619) 286-7728.

At the meeting members will be asked to nominate people to fill nine positions on a new Men’s Club board: President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Immediate Past President, and Four Board Members, who will be assigned portfolios.  Terms of office will be for two years.  Voting will take place over the following week, with new officers to take their positions with the arrival of Secular Year 2016.

A set of bylaws, adapted from the Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs also will be presented for consideration by the membership.

There will be a proposal to set dues for the Men’s Club at $35 per year, an increase from the current $25.  The Sisterhood’s yearly dues also are $35.

A full agenda will be emailed to members, and extra copies will be available the night of the meeting.

Our club’s thanks go to Bill and Barbara Sperling for their kind hospitality!

TIS Men\'s Club News