Thursday, May 15, 2008


If any of you have ever come across the fast paced sport of Jewish geography, you know good and well that there are many different occurences that happen to you for good and bad. After your done reading this you should be able to aqcuire an extreme talent for this sport and maybe become the all time champ.(I think it was like 100 names is the record for most people known in a row and that person played verse two people) The first step is asking the guy next to you on the plane/city bus/behind the counter where they live. Alot of times I feel the guy is lying to me because then why does he work here? or why are you flying from JFK if you live in Baltimore? Then what part of (insert community here) do they come from or what yeshivah do you go to? This by far is the most common start to any conversation, you should be able to say some sort of code or number and the person your talking to could instantly know youre asking the where do you live and learn question.

example 1) You ask the person next to you if they know Shmerel. They dont. Then you say "well I thought you might know him since" and then you tell them something about Shmerel. This is because you feel weird that you asked about someone and they dont know them, why its like this I have no clue but yet it always happens. You wait patiently for them to say something back and if you dont know who they are talking about too get ready for a very boring flight or awkward wait on line.

example 2)You say to the guy next to you "do you know Shmerel?" and for some odd reason they do. They even take it further and tell you how much they hate him. You get taken aback because you know he isnt like that in any sort of way. In the end you get into one big frummy fight, with you and him thinking the other one is a shakren gamur, but the good part is you now have a story to tell all your friends or another person youre playing with about how you met someone who knows this guy, and you get extra points for this type of story.

example 3)You ask the guy next to you and say do you know Shmerel? They say yes and you get into this whole conversatoin about his whole life and you could write this persons biography from this conversation. You talk about how you met him in the Catskills and he lives in Borough Park, has a cousin in monsey that just moved or went to visit Israel (I dont know about you but this ends up happening to me where someone goes to Israel)or is getting married/Bar mitzvah.

I have alot of fun talking to people about who they know like I was in Israel once and we decided to go to the park. I was feeding my little cousin some sort of mush and the lady next to me asks me if I come from Brooklyn. (She probably asked me since I was speaking English) then she says "do you know my brother in law" and I did. It always leaves you wondering how did we happen to have been next to each other at the same time and know the same person or its such a small world we live in.

Another great way is and my friend does this all the time is to ask the person whats there name. They say some random name like Friedman and you ask him/her if they're related to Yankel Friedman in Borough Park even though you have no clue who this guy is. Many times you get an answer like which one there is a thousand of them or "yeh how do you know him" and you tell them the truth and end up finding about more people. The more people you know the better you are at this game.

One of the best ways to past the time no wonder its such a great fad among us. Do guyim play? I think yes but not as much as us because they got other things to talk about like the elections. But us as Jews we couldnt care less about who wins the elections as long as they're good to Israel.

Hopefully this has helped you understand the paths in which the game can take maybe one day it will help you in life.

This game is a product of PB (Polak Brothers) and is not to be used in any sort of demeaning way. Watch out for MES (Memoery Enhancing Steroids) if seen please report for further investigation. Side affects include being a macher. You can buy the home game, Guess Jew? (Guess who?) For more information visit

5 people gave their 2 cents:

frumcollegegirl said...

firstly, i heard my lab partners playing this geography thing. frank was talking about wrestling, and nick said "hey you wrestle? my cousin wrestles, i wonder if you know him" to which frank inquired about his name. when nick told him the name, frank said "yea sure i know him, can't believe he's your cousin" and then they went on to discuss other ppl they knew in common.

i for one, hate jewish geograhphy. i think i started disliking it like in my third or fourth month in israel, becuase everywhere i'd go, i'd meet someone knew and have to play the whole thing over again. it gets quite tedious after awhile

The Babysitter said...

MikeinMidwood:That is very true, you brought up all the points of what could happen in those scenarios. I never noticed, but your right, that's how it happens.

It's also funny when that happens, when you talk to someone from a different place and you say you live in a certain area and they ask you if you know so and so, as if that area is so small that you would know everyone.

You actually reminded me of a joke. encase you haven't seen it before I'll copy and paste, (it's long though):

After months of negotiation with the authorities, a Talmudist from Odessa was finally granted permission to visit Moscow.

He boarded the train and found an empty seat.

At the next stop, a young man got on and sat next to him.

The scholar looked at the young man and he thought:

This fellow doesn't look like a peasant, so if he is no peasant he probably comes from this district.

If he comes from this district, then he must be Jewish because this is, after all, a Jewish district.

But on the other hand, since he is a Jew, where could he be going?
I'm the only Jew in our district who has permission to travel to Moscow.

Ahh, wait! Just outside Moscow there is a little village called Samvet, and Jews don't need special permission to go to Samvet.

But why would he travel to Samvet?

He is surely going to visit one of the Jewish families there.

But how many Jewish families are there in Samvet?

Aha, only two - the Bernsteins and the Steinbergs.

But since the Bernsteins are a terrible family, so such a nice looking fellow like him, he must be visiting the Steinbergs.

But why is he going to the Steinbergs in Samvet?

The Steinbergs have only daughters, two of them, so maybe he's their son-in-law.

But if he is, then which daughter did he marry?

They say that Sarah Steinberg married a nice lawyer from Budapest,

and Esther married a businessman from Zhitomer, so it must be Sarah's husband.

Which means that his name is Alexander Cohen, if I'm not mistaken.

But if he came from Budapest, with all the anti-Semitism they have there, he must have changed his name.

What's the Hungarian equivalent of Cohen?

It is Kovacs.

But since they allowed him to change his name, he must have special status to change it.

What could it be?

Must be a doctorate from the University.

Nothing less would do.

At this point, therefore, the scholar of Talmud turns to the young man and says,

"Excuse me. Do you mind if I open the window, Dr. Kovacs?"

"Not all," answered the startled co-passenger.

"But how is it that you know my name?"

"Ahhh," replied the Talmudist, "It was obvious."

Mikeinmidwood said...


I guess they do play the game but what do they call it

Baby sitter

Thanks for the joke

Anonymous said...

I luv you, mike. Don't take me too seriously, i'm an youngish thinking and looking grandmother. i love your blogs. you hit the nail on the head. you should write in a newspaper. It will probably be banned by the frummies for telling the truth. They can
't stand the truth.

Mikeinmidwood said...