So I have to admit, now, with a sigh of sweet relief, I was quite nervous about holding the fate of the SHPiEL’s future in my hands. Staring at the budget, hearing Zahara’s questions in my ears, and feeling the pressure from above to make things happen, I wasn’t quite sure if I could do this. What if I couldn’t save the SHPiEL? What if the very thing I’d thrown years of my sweat, tears and passion into collapsed on my watch? These fears were a bit irrational, but I can admit to you now that I had them.

But hope has filled me, and new sense of capability. I’m fairly confident that the combined efforts of Yoni, myself, and the SHPiEL staff have managed to secure the printing of issues 5, 6 and 7. We just need one more and we’ve finished off the semester!

As the face of the staff changes, and I realize slowly that I am the last of a dying era of SHPiELigans, I am also confident in the future of the paper. I had a very enthused conversation with Andrew Ford, a new SHPiELer who isn’t even Jewish, who is determined to help the paper grow. Hearing that kind of excitement and real love for the paper eased my nerves, and also made me wish Zahara could have heard his passion. She deserves to know that she is not alone, and that we are all fighting with her. It’s so complicated when that line between friends and professionals is blurred, especially when the “staff” is my age. I feel conceited giving advice, because I never want to come off like I know more than my friends.

I appreciate that you all have given me the opportunity to facilitate your creativity and help foster The SHPiEL’s growth, without making me feel like my friendship has been sacrificed. I will not be at services tonight, but I wish you all a magical Shabbos evening.