Some of you may not have made the connection between Irving, the rubber chicken, and my Jewishness. For those of you who haven’t, please sit down with coffee and a bun, and brace yourselves:
I am, in fact, Jewish.
Please don’t faint.
For all of my friends who are not Jewish, I’d like to share these rules, which some of you might find just the teensiest bit familiar.
For all my friends who are Jewish, well, a misery shared is a misery halved. :)
It’s not so much like somebody invented these rules and all Jewish children are taught to follow them. It’s more like Jewish people have behaved like this for aeons already, and then somebody noticed and made up some rules to fit.
For some of these rules, that ‘somebody’ was me. Can you guess which ones are mine?
Ok, on with the show. :)
Rules For Jewishness
- All the best meals end up as leftovers.
- Leaving a restaurant empty handed is just silly.
- Jewish holidays are all about the eating, even if it’s only about the eating which happens before and after the not-eating.
- Pork is treyf, but dim sum makes a very tasty appetiser.
- According to Jewish dietary law, pork and shellfish are treyf except when eaten in Chinese restaurants.
- Israel may be the land of milk and honey, but a Jewish mother’s matzoh balls take you to the land of milk of Maalox.
- Some people leave and never say goodbye; Jews say goodbye all night and never leave.
- Always answer a question with a question.
- The names of diseases must always be pronounced in a whisper (and preferably just mouthed silently).
- Anything worth saying is worth repeating many times. Loudly.
- Only stand up to your mother and insist you are an adult, if you:
a. are just about to emigrate permanently to Botswana
b. want more emotional blackmail and guilt in your life
c. can wait until 10 years after her funeral, or
d. have reached the Jewish age of consent (90), whichever comes later
e. love it when she humours you in baby talk whilst squeezing your face and calling you “Mama’s little bubbeleh”
g. want to hear that story about how much she suffered giving birth to you again
h. want her to remind you about every sacrifice she’s ever made for you (again)
i. love fighting those battles you always lose