There may be only one man on God's green earth whom you can reach on his cell phone, thus interrupting his work affixing an oversize menorah to a faux cable car.
That'd be Rabbi Yosef Langer. And it means it's that time of year again. Happy Chanukah.
The spiritual leader of Chabad of S.F. will light the gargantuan menorah at Union Square at 5 p.m. tonight for the 36th consecutive year. Later, he'll scoot around town in the cable car MitzvahMobile "spreading light around San Francisco."
Illuminating the Bill Graham Menorah, by the way, doesn't come cheap. Men's Wearhouse proprietor George "I Guarantee It" Zimmer will stand alongside Langer tonight for the lighting of the 23-by-13-foot menorah; he passed the rabbi a $25,000 check to fund the event -- literally, money to burn.
That money, Langer says, funds the installation, rent, sound, permitting -- the whole schmeer.
When asked the Alfie question -- "What's it all about?" -- regarding the public lighting of massive menorahs, the rabbi puts it thusly:
"Everyone needs a miracle in their life. Materially, physically, spiritually. And they are still accessible. Miraculous energy is drawn down into the world at this time. It is accessible -- you just have to reach out and grab it."
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