Sunday, 3 March 2013

A Jewish Complaint

When someone dies, Jews observe a 7 day mourning period called a shiva.

There are several rules to a shiva, including but not limited to:

1. It lasts 7 days
2. Mourners sit on low chairs
3. Kosher meals are brought in
4. Mirrors are covered
5. Prayers twice a day.

The prayers twice a day require ten people to be present.

In a pinch, you can use 9 people and a Torah.

Ten people joined in prayer is called a Minyan.

People in the Minyan:
1. Have to be Jewish
2. Have to be over 13

According to Orthodox rabbis, they have to be men.

According to the rest of the world, as long as you are Jewish and 13 or older, you're in.

Here's my complaint:

People who follow no Jewish doctrine, who would not know a mishnah if it came up and bit them on the, uh, arm, hold desperately to the rule that a Minyan is for men only.

A few years ago we went to a drive-by shiva where they would not be sitting the full 7 days due to a pre-planned trip to Miami Beach.  Low chairs - too uncomfortable - pushed to the side.  Mirrors not covered (cling wrap so tricky to remove).

Well, it's almost time for the Minyan, said Mourner 1, sucking the last bit of sauce from a spare rib.

Lemme just finish the Moo Goo Gai Pan and I'm all yours said Mourner 2.

They did a head count.

8 men.

You can count me if you want, I don't mind praying.

Oh, no, we couldn't possibly include you in our Minyan. That's only for men.

(Look of panic crossed Husband's face.

Don't worry, Honey, I won't make a scene.

Retreated to the kitchen where I belong.)

Luckily we were in a condo, and they could send someone to ride the elevators and recruit a sucker a nice young gentleman who would meet the Minyan criteria (of being Jewish and having a, uh, pulse).

Found one suitable candidate. Wearing a Hooters T-shirt.

Someone hand him a book so we can get started.


So let me get this straight:
1. You are willing to sit shiva for a day and half so that your vacation will not be interrupted
2. You don't mind sitting on your comfy couch instead of the standard issue chairs
3. You have a wife and a girlfriend and everyone here knows it
4. You ordered Chinese food with all the trimmings to a house of shiva


The one rule that you are absolutely clinging to, the one rule that will not be violated in your home, is that the Minyan is for men only.

How am I going to change this.

Maybe I need to start riding the elevator.

And wearing a Hooters t-shirt.


  1. I don't know ANYONE like that. At all.....

  2. Read, liked and will go into the archives for more.

  3. AMY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Absolutely BRILLIANT!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Sounds like many a shiva I have been to lately........unfortunately.

  5. This is one of my favourites. I have been to too many shivas and have knocked on doors of people I didn't know one to many times. Oy!

  6. Never imagined I'd see hooters and shiva in same list. Funny post!

  7. שלא עשני אישה...

  8. Best one yet!!! You are hysterical! And so so true!!!!

  9. Im officially doublked over laughing...welcome back!! xoxo

  10. Amy, I cried reading this one- tears of joy!! Hysterical and so true!