Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Is he doing it for the jokes?

Tim: Jerry, it's our sense of humor that sustained us as a people for 3000 years.
Jerry: 5000.
Tim: 5000, even better. Okay, Chrissie. Give me a schtickle of flouride.
-- Seinfeld, "The Yada Yada," original airdate 4/24/1997

I am Jewish.  A full-on Chosen Person, a Member of the Tribe descended on both sides from the Levites.  The real deal. 

My husband, on the other hand, is not.  Not that I care, obviously (particularly because as Judaism is matrilineal, our children are Jewish regardless of his affiliation or lack thereof).  But he continuously refers to himself as being Jewish as a result of marrying me ("I'm a Jew by proxy, baby"), or how he's really into certain holidays "since he became a Jew," that kind of thing.  I try to explain to him that we don't make it that easy for people to join up, we don't encourage conversion, that you don't become Jewish simply by marrying one, yada yada yada, but he is undaunted in his insistence to the contrary.

Coming from him, particularly with his Aussie accent, it can be quite hilarious.

Tonight is the first night of Hannukah, so J, being on short term disability leave while recovering from his hernia surgery, is the one that's home and available to run errands and "honey-do" items.  So I sent him off to the grocery store with a list including Hannukah candles and latke mix (I know, I know, I should grate the potatoes and make them from scratch, but honestly, my life is mishegas these days and I just don't have the time or the energy).

He sent me a text from the Target saying, "Target doesn't have ghannuka (sic) candles."

I called him and expressed incredulity and prodded him to ask someone (his ability to find something 3 inches in front of his face is appallingly bad), but he insisted that he had asked someone and that somehow, they carried menorahs but not candles.  I told him to try Safeway.* They didn't have any either.

"I'm sorry you're having such a hard time.  I'm really annoyed they're so hard to find -- you'd think it was some obscure religion and that no one in the world celebrates Hannukah.  Anyway, I appreciate you running all over town to get them," I told him.

"No worries, love.  It's all part of the oppression we've endured throughout history."

"Who's this 'we'?"

"You know.  Us Jews."


Anyway, Happy Hannukah, everyone.  Here's to beautiful lights, fried foods and religious freedom.  Not necessarily in that order.

*I called them and they told me they carry Shabbat (sabbath) candles but not Hannukah candles.  Whatever.  If I were a betting woman, I would wager a significant pile of cash that most Jews in the United States have never bought shabbat candles in their lives, but the good majority of them at the very least have jewed up for Hannukah by lighting Hannukah candles.


  1. You'd totally win that bet. We had the same problem at Publix out in Cartersville. Shabbat candles, no Hannukah candles.

    Somehow, Doug scored some clearance Hannukah candles at Target a while back.

    Happy Hannukah to you, Jason, Zeke and Josie!

  2. Happy Hannukah to all of you!

  3. Lisa -- I finally remembered that Bed Bath & Beyond always has a great selection of Hannukah candles, so we managed to get some in time for tonight.

    LG -- thanks! Hugs to you.

  4. Happy Hannukah! This post reminds me of the SATC season when the good Episcopalean Charlotte converts for Harry and she's always talking about the jews as "us." I think she even says something about enduring oppression. hee, hee!