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Since moving to L.A. nearly six years ago, I've celebrated Jewish holidays in true nomad fashion, from Hollywood to the Valley and back again.

The first year was at the Laugh Factory. The female Cantor played the guitar as she sang, swaying slowly and dreamily back and forth and making me think that at any moment she was about to ask us to cross our arms in front of us and hold hands with one another, a la Girl Scout camp. Another year was at a friend's family's house in Encino, which I believe may be a rite of passage for Jewish transplants in this city. And this year now marks my second (non-consecutive) year of services at the Chai Center.

The Chai Center is a non-profit organization that caters to "any Jew that moves," according to their website. Run by Director Rabbi Shlomo Schwartz, or "Schwartzie," as he calls himself, the Center holds free High Holiday services – unheard of in this day and age – in venues around L.A.

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This year's services for Rosh Hashana, which marks the beginning of the Jewish New Year, were held last night at the Writer's Guild of America on Doheny. They were scheduled to start at 6:30pm.

Promptly at 7:00, Rabbi Schwartz began. To kick things off, he jovially remarked, "We're on time -- it is 6:30, Jewish Standard Time," drawing an in-the-know laugh from his audience.