First off, thank you so much for reading (and Happy Holidays!) and reviewing!
As an aside, it is a bit of a chore to get Word to skip over Yiddish words, like frum
, which means observant and the u
is pronounced a bit like the oo
I really don't know how the military currently does it in terms of minyans, and I wonder if it's done via communications. I am sure this scenario has come up at some point. The Torah can be used as a person, but then what do you do? And for the Orthodox, Karin wouldn't have counted for the minyan, either.
Ethan is Conservative, so Karin can be in the minyan (this is relatively new; when I was growing up, that was not the case in my denomination). Also, there are female Conservative rabbis already, so Leah Benson could be a rabbi today. Again, it's the Orthodox who would have a problem with it - but it's unlikely that they would send their people out into deep space, too.
I wanted Jonathan to establish a few things with his behaviors - one is that he's wondering a bit why he has to be the one to do this - he's not getting that the Shapiro family wouldn't use communications on Shabbos. And then he says something lame - which is often what happens when there are deaths. People say all sorts of inappropriate things, it just spills out and we mean well, but it clangs. It is also an odd situation because this is, truly, not a close blood relative. He may be wondering, what's next? Do I have to start breaking the news to people when their second cousin twice-removed on their father's side buys a new car?
Plus, let's face it, he's not necessarily heroic 24/7, and no one is. He does what he does, but not necessarily willingly or gladly all the time.
The whole thing has got to clang a little for him - why would the Admiral contact him for this? More logically, it's that Ethan would be told by his mother, and then he would go to Malcolm (his superior officer) and ask for leave in 6 months or so for the unveiling. Ethan would probably also ask Hoshi to get him Rabbi Benson on the line, and that would be about it. But instead it's complicated because Rachel, by virtue of her longevity, was famous.
As for T'Pol - ha! - she kept quiet more because I don't write her too well. She's always been uncomfortable for me to write. Perhaps she's busily working on a paper tying the Laws of Physics (conservation of energy) to Chanukah?
I like the idea of Peppermint patties standing in for gelt. And as for Azar - I wanted it to all be very casual, matter of fact, no big deal that he was there. If I had a solution to the current conflicts, I imagine I would, yes, be on a plane. Perhaps it'll involve Peppermint patties.