Tuesday, April 22, 2008


It happened the Thursday before Pesach. My family was going out to eat at a famous restaurant joint on eighteenth Ave. and Coney Island. My phobic brother begins tensing up over how crowded the place is and procedes to inject negative comments every so often ranging from how there's no way we are getting a table to the food itself. I was suprised to see how many chassidim filled the place but anyhow, I assertively grab the next free table. My brother though, continues his negativity complaining that the place is a mosh pit? Personally, I was unfamiliar with the term. He was still going on asking how we could possibly eat there what with the guys behind the counter using their hands to then dump the food on the plates. Annoyed with his attitude, everyone decided we should just leave. (Why we felt driven to actually leave because of him I still cannot figure out.)

My brother decided we should go for pizza instead. (That would make it the fifth night in a row having pizza.) At half past ten I exclaim that there is no way the place he wants to go to is open but he reasons that no place in their right mind would close anytime before one AM on erev Pesach. For some reason though we find ourselves actually heading to the pizza place passing a Shnitzel place on the way. I suggested we just go there but apparently that place was his third choice. Nevermind that it was open, avaible, relatively empty and right there... So we get to the pizza place and it was of course closed. (Beleive it or not it's one of the few pizza joints left selling two dollar slices.) We leave and find ourselves passing a kosher Subway. At that point I was willing to eat anything and exclaimed that we just go there... At the end of this whole fiasco we end up in good old dependable Pizza Nosh. We finally got a pie, and went home.

I guess we were destined to have pizza every night that week. (I don't think I could look at another slice..) Now it's Pesach though and all there is to eat is Matzah (thankfully we eat gebrukts.) Honestly though, people should wish others an easy Passover the way we do with fasts...

So everyone, have an easy Pesach.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


Pesach is coming again. Time to do some backbreaking labor. My house is basically Pesach-ready besides for the one table designated for chametz...y'know the best thing about Pesach cleaning is getting to find all the things you lost in the past year- like keys (of course you already changed the lock because you lost the key...,) random pieces of silverware that got stuck behind the oven, and even money! The labor has gotta be thorough yet conveniently it helps you sympathize with what the Jews in Mitzrayim must have felt like.

Onto Pesach food. I bet Schick's bakery in Boro Park sold more cake than the amounts of Matzah sold in all of Brooklyn. Why do people want all this cake? Pesach cake is tolerable at best. Then there's the Matzah aspect itself. It is called poor man's bread yet why on earth does it cost so much? Thirty dollars a box- that's crazy. Don't even get me started on current pizza prices...

Back to Pesach though. The pre-pesach tasks are many, including B'dikas Chametz, searching for the ten pieces of chometz using the spoon and the feather...Oorah used to mail those out to everyone (Don't know if they still do?) One year it's arrival was delayed and was going to come on Pesach which was quite catastrophic since they even sent ten complimentary pieces of chometz! Then of course, you've got to burn the chometz and this makes the fire department go nuts. They make you stop burning it and you really never finish destroyin' that chometz. And this year is a little different- you got Pesach right after Shabbos so even after burning the chometz you have to flush it on Shabbos with the plastic you used, which causes an overflow and one big pre-Pesach mess!

Then theres motzie Pesach- everyone rushing out to buy Pizza as soon as it's over. You could go to practically any pizza store at all and the line will be out the door. People are literally there for hours. Last year a person bought the first pie at Pizza time for a really high price for tzedaka. (something like eight hundred dollars but hey that's about the normal price for a pie there now...)


Monday, April 14, 2008


A great factor in the shidduch crisis is what I call the "system". The system is orchestrated by everyone besides those actually dating so everyone is made out (by others looking out for them) to seem as perfect as possible, allowing perfection to be seen as the norm.

The ideal girl is labeled a Bais Yaakov-type girl. It seems a shame that if you're not a "Bais Yaakov-type girl" you're considered not good enough and thus less desirable picking. Then there is seminary- another must. Forget about skipping straight to college- that'll surely make you second-class-citizen material. If a girl want to marry someone who will learn for a while, yet the girl can't jump into college, finding that above-minimum-wage- side job while in school is going to be pretty difficult...the husband might even have to look for a job...but you wanted to marry a learner...

The system conveniently allows the seminary year to be one of the biggest dating fodder. You would think that this wouuld solve all the problems about shidduchim, having oodles of fresh from sem girls. Well unfortunately, that's not enough to meet the criteria. There are some who do get married right out of seminary but there are those who are simply not ready.

Then there's actually going to the right seminary- otherwise you're flying under the radar. So even if you can successfully say you went to seminary you're asked which one and then it all comes right back to whether you're a "Bais Yaakov type girl." And again, even having gone to seminary, you might as well have gone to college since you're still second-class-citizen material . And hey, this is all information collected before date number one so uh...good luck to you once you've scored one.

That completes one portion of the "system". So I reiterate, not so hard to figure out why there is this crisis. My conclusion- go out with someone without so much critiquing. It's not like you're forced to sign a marriage contract after of one date.

So this people is our shidduch crisis.


This crisis talk is really getting on my nerves. Everywhere you look you come across the topic. I think the only reason there is a crisis to begin with is because when people go out and meet a nice person all these different "questions" have to be so focused on. Like where do you learn ...(Okay I guess that one is normal.) But why should college equal outcast? If you go to uh..."Fakewood" and say thats what you're doing forget it they'll chase you out of town.

Then if you get passed stage one with the going out, it's on to what are you going to do for parnasa. So a guy has to wonder, if I go learn I won't have much money but if I say I'll work this pairing is out the window because everyone needs a masmid (learner). And the learning is often expected to go on for at least two or three years minimum or until you have a kid or two.

If you really want to learn you better hope this girl's father is supporting you, otherwise you have to find some shnooky work to keep you afloat. However, then ya got in-laws who will say maybe he wasn't right for her... (behind your back of course). Plus after asking you all the "questions," they'll just go ahead and re-ask the shadchan. And they'll ask just everything- height, weight, family "diseases..." ("Did you have the chickenpox yet?")
Well there's your explanation for this crisis...with a shebang like this how can there not be one.