MoTAS Weekly for 9/13/17: Course Language Means It’s Golf Tournament Time — This Monday

In This Issue:

29th Annual MoTAS Golf Tournament
Sunset Hills Country Club, Thousand Oaks CA

This coming Monday is the MoTAS Golf Tournament, and we need you to make it a success. It’s not too late, even if you don’t play golf, to ensure the success of the tournament. This tournament is what provides the funds so that MoTAS can operate. Here’s how you can help:


Our tournament has one of the lowest fees around, and for it you get not only a great day of golf, but breakfast, lunch, and dinner. You also get the opportunity to bid on silent auction prizes and play a bunch of great games. Even if you don’t play golf, you likely know people that do: military buddies, business associates, colleagues, friends. Encourage them to support our men’s club by coming out to play. They can sign up online at Entries are only $215 per player.


We need raffle and silent auction prizes. We don’t have enough donations from local businesses. Any we can get for free saves us from spending our own money. Here is what I am asking you to consider. Lots of us have gift certificates for restaurants, movies, yogurt shops, gas, etc. that have been sitting around and are not likely to be used. You might even have tickets to an upcoming play you cannot use. If you were willing to donate those to MoTAS for our tournament, you can write that off as a donation. You can also talk to businesses you frequent to see if they would like to donate a gift certificate to the tournament (donation forms are at this link). If you have a donation for the silent auction/raffle, contact Howard Miller at


We need volunteers for the day or even half the day. People are needed to help register and to observe play at the par three holes where we have big prizes for a hole in one. Please see if you can take some time off to help our tournament succeed. It is a beautiful course with lots of shade and we provide our volunteers with breakfast, lunch and dinner — plus, you get the opportunity to bid on our silent auction items. We need at-least six more volunteers. If you are able to volunteer, contact Howard Miller at


Sponsorship opportunities are available at all levels, from $18 three-line messages to $36 business card ads to major sponsorships. Sponsorship shows that you support MoTAS in what we do and how we help the congregation. Visit here for more information on sponsorships. Sponsorships must be in by Friday in order to be included in the program.


As always, remember that the Men of Temple Ahavat Shalom is *your* organization. Keep up to date on our activities at and participate. Sign up for our action alert list at We want to serve all the men of Temple Ahavat Shalom and welcome new participants from the TAS membership. Join our Facebook group and “follow” our website. Come be part of the Men of Temple Ahavat Shalom!

(Return to Top)


2017 MoTAS Man of the Year: Daniel Faigin

At the 2017 MoTAS Shabbat, the 2016 Man of the Year, Barry Mann, introduced this year’s Man of the Year as follows:

This year’s Man of the Year can truly be called a Renaissance Man. His interests are so varied that he should be up for “The Most Interesting Man in the World”.

If there is a job to be done, all you have to do is ask him and it will be done.

He is selfless to a fault. His knowledge of Judaism is astounding.

Having grown up in West Los Angeles and attending high school there, he received his undergraduate and masters degrees at UCLA.

He has a profound and varied interest in theatre and seems to never miss a performance, whether it be large or small theaters.

He is also a fanatic on board games and has an extensive collection of some of the most esoteric games you can imagine.

As a computer whiz, he has worked on our website, created flyers for our dining events and our various special events (including the golf tournament.)

He has maps in his head and is an expert on our California highways. He runs a number of blogs on the LA theatre scene and our LA streets and highways. His knowledge of  computers and cyber security are well known.

He is our last two years president of MoTAS. He is our own DANIEL FAIGIN!!

MoTAS Weekly for 8/31/16: Highlighting Calls for Squares, Golf, Pancakes, Weilers, Denial Movie, Allan Sherman

Fathers and Sons

As I write this post/article, I have just received word that Scott Yollis’ father passed away. He’s not alone: in March, other men in the congregation have lost fathers or fathers-in-law, including Mike Doner and Rabbi Lutz. It is also just after my father’s birthday; he passed away in 2004. Fathers play important roles in our lives: they pass down values, they serve as examples, they teach us how to lead. Our congregation is blessed with many active fathers, including the men of MoTAS and the fathers in our religious school.

One problem we have, however, is a generational divide between the fathers in the congregation. Although we all share the same goal — leadership in our family and leadership for the congregation — we feel we have little in common. The older dads form the core constituency of MoTAS. The younger dads are involved in the ECEC and activities like “Dad’s Night Out”. When we should be cross-pollinating our similar experiences, we separate and think we have little in common.

MoTAS would like to change that. First, we invite the younger dads to come to our Sunday morning meetings (timed to be during religious school), our MoTAS Seder, and our upcoming outing to see the Lancaster Jethawks — affordable, family-friendly baseball. We also want to work with the dad’s group in the ECEC — providing umbrella publicity, and working together to promote fund raisers for our groups and the congregation. If this is something you would like to help with, please contact me at .


MoTAS Weekly for 12/16 & 12/23/15: Join MoTAS for a Jewish Xmas: Movies, Shabbat, and Chinese Food

I’m Fried

Whew. What a year it has been so far. We were overwhelmed at the August Shabbabaque, and found out where our fronds really were when we had to scramble to find them to build the Sukkah. We came together for a wonderful golf tournament, and have had great hangouts, breakfasts, and speakers. It has been incredibly busy, and I’m just about fried. I’m sure you are as well.

One of the metaphors of Chanukah is oil, and we traditionally eat fried foods. I’m sure we’re all familiar of why oil is a central theme of Chanukah. I’d like to address being fried, and how to endure and stay strong even when you’re getting dipped into that hot oil.

The answer is simple: Friends. Friends who recognize when you’re overloaded and just step in to help out, and who pull you out of the fried before you’re burnt to a crisp. Where do you find those friends? I’m sure you know my answer: in the Temple auxiliaries: Sisterhood and MoTAS. By being involved with MoTAS, you will make friends for life — friends who are there for you just as they are there for TAS. This friendship crosses political and spiritual divides. It also deepens your connection to TAS as a whole, for those friends bring you into larger and larger circles, until the whole congregation becomes a supporting insulating layer to keep your temperature from rising, resulting in a meltdown.

As we end the calendar year with all the December craziness, remember that MoTAS is here for you. We hope to see you, and get to know you, at a future MoTAS event.

Preventive Maintenance

This month, it was my turn to present a D’var Torah at the TAS Board Meeting. The parasha was Noach, and as I wrote it during the Golf Tournament, I was struck by the preventive maintenance Noah did before loading the ark. MoTAS  is intimately familiar with preventative maintenance as we are often called upon to do it, both at the temple and at our homes.

Preventive maintenance can involve hand and power tools, but it can also involve tools as simple as a smile and a greeting. Everytime you greet and welcome someone to a MoTAS meeting or at a TAS Shabbat or event, you are performing preventive maintenance. Everytime you say “thank you” to a volunteer, you are performing preventive maintenance. You are maintaining the relationship of that person with MoTAS and with TAS, and possibly bringing it to the point where they will become more involved and more active (or they will stay active). This is critical: for if you ignore the preventive maintenance, as with equipment, you pay for it later.

My goal, with MoTAS, is to create a culture of preventive maintenance. If you haven’t participated in a MoTAS activity, we would love to have you join us. If you have volunteered to help us, we really appreciate your time and effort. Oh, and if you still want to do that physical preventive maintenance (this time, for the world), come and join MoTAS on Mitzvah Day, November 1, 2015.