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Messing with yeshivish people

I was sitting on the couch reading a copy of the Jewish Press, when my drunken charedi cousin walked in the room, it was purim so I gave him some slack. I was dressed up and ready to go to shul. Before I even realized what was happening my cousin slammed his hand down onto the table and demanded what a heimishe yid was doing reading the Jewish Prust as he called it. Of course he opened up a Pandora’s box, because I love to mess with people.

I also had never really knew that the Jewish Press was considered pornigraphic by Charedi standards, but here I had my drunken 17 year old cousin with those greasy behind the ears peyos yelling at me about standards and finding a shidduch. Then he started saying in a thick yeshivish accent- “what would Rav Shlomo think?” (Rav Shlomo Ganzfried is my great great grandfather- author of the kitzur shulchan aruch- for the unenlightened)

What is wrong with the Jewish Press I asked in a sincere tone? Of course I knew what they didn’t like, and then he started saying how the people who write for it aren’t all frum, some of them are even anti-frum and some of them are Lubavitch GASP. Of course this revelation made for an even more fun shabbos- because I had found out there was a Lubavitch basement shul in the area, and I hate the regular shul on Park Avenue, so I had decided to attend the Salloff shul instead.

On a side note, I was reading the (YWN) Yeshiva World News last week and saw that one of the letters to the editor- was an article calling for a boycott of the Jewish Press and asking that the frum community call it the “JP Crisis” proof of course that frum people love calling everything they don’t agree with a crisis. The article goes on to explain how the articles aren’t frum and that his wife had shown him something she found to be untznius- funny because if you were so frum- why would your wife call you over. Anyway I assume it was a pornographic sheitle advertisement- which seems to be all the rage.

By the way pornographic sheitle ads are not what you are expecting, in fact I would prefer the JC Penny underwear ads of the Sunday Times any day- but in certain sects the showing of a women’s face is bad, and in the shietle ads the women are hot- this of course is a problem because- God forbid we show a women’s face, because we may come to think badly about them. Anyway the comments on the YWN like always are somewhat freaky, but definitely worth checking out. Read the article on the Jewish Press Crisis

Back to my Charedi cousin. When it was time to go to shul I asked my aunt where the Luibavitch shul was, and all the sudden world war 3 broke out. My drunken cousin, his aunt, my aunt, they all started trying to convince me why I shouldn’t go to the Lubbies for shul. What would Rav Shlomo say was the drunken cousins argument- the Lubbies are lost and off the derech he said. Then he went into a yeshivish tirade about our cousin Yisroel who was a brilliant talmud chachum “until he went off the derech and became a Lubavitcher” He could have been brilliant but its all wasted now, supposedly.

Then my other cousin started saying stuff about fathers not wanting me to go out with their daughters if they knew I was hanging around Lubavitchers. Of course I had to just bring up that out of all the sects of Jews I liked Lubavitchers the most, and if there was cholov yisroel ben and jerrys and I didn’t have to grow my beard, I would have become one long ago. Uproar I tell ya, I had just lost all respect and they would try and mekariv me back to yeshivish.

I went to the Lubavitch shul on Park Ave and loved it, it was my first time in a shul in Monsey that I didn’t feel like a Space Martian. No little kids giving me the stare and no walk of shame to try and find a siddur. No kiddush, no visible women’s section. but the friendly people were more then worth it.

{ 66 comments… add one }
  • Anonymous April 11, 2008, 12:26 PM

    Sigh… I love the way Lubavitchers are in his pecking order:

    The Non-frum
    The Anti-frum
    Then Lubavitchers.

    What a show of Ahavas Yisroel!

    The Wolf

  • WolfishMusings April 11, 2008, 12:28 PM


    I put “fake” sarcasm tags around the word “Love” in the first line and around the last line, but it looks like WordPress stripped them out.

    The Wolf

  • heshman April 11, 2008, 12:33 PM

    I actually find it to be a great way to weed out potential marriage matches, I mention Lubavitchers and I wait for a response, if there is any tone of hatred- I throw up red flags and refuse to pay for their food- well I wish I could do that.

  • The Babysitter April 11, 2008, 12:37 PM

    That’s cool R’ Shlomo is my great great…grandfather too.

  • menashe April 11, 2008, 1:08 PM

    two things to quickly comment before shabbos:

    1) cool yichus.

    2) it would be funny about Lubavitchers if it werent so sad. i try to give them (chabad haters) the benefit of the doubt by assuming they’ve never tasted from the wellsprings of chassidus so when they see such a ridiculously successful organization that does things a little differently they get scared and self defensive. stop feeling so threatened we’re not after your precious minhagim!

    there’s a saying by the way. there are alot of chassidim not wearing kapotas and alot of kapotas not holding onto chassidim! people that take frum to be a lifestyle rather than an actual set of values. hating yidden and the Jewish Press isn’t a set of values – it’s stupid.

  • Dimebag April 11, 2008, 6:00 PM

    If I hadn’t known better I’d think the letter about the Jewish Press was a parody/caricature of frum people.

  • HeadBanger April 12, 2008, 9:05 PM

    All the letters to Rachel should be compiled into the Jewish book of Znus. Is it that hard to please your woman?

  • MoJo April 12, 2008, 9:05 PM

    thats pretty cool, because not only am i a great grandson of r’ Shloime (7th Generation), i am also a lubavitcher.
    small world.

  • lubab April 12, 2008, 11:52 PM

    hey, me too, i’m also 7th generation from r’ shlomo gantzfried, and i’m a lubavitcher.

  • jelen April 13, 2008, 1:20 AM

    chabad is fantabulous. they’re practically saving my life here in bumble$%^&, NY.

  • frum single female April 13, 2008, 2:22 AM

    i have lubavitch relatives and i always use this as a litmus for tolerance with my suitors. im not remotely lubavitch, but i think that tolerance of other sects is very important. thought lubavitchers would never through you out of their homes if you didnt dress exactly like them and they will always great you in a friendly manner.

  • frum single female April 13, 2008, 2:25 AM

    please excuse my spelling in my above post. its very late at night.

  • Yochanan April 13, 2008, 5:15 AM

    Seems like we got a Ganzfried ruin going on on this blog.

  • Yochanan April 13, 2008, 5:16 AM

    Seems like we got a Ganzfried reunion going on on this blog.

  • Frum Punk April 13, 2008, 4:38 PM

    Hey, R Shlomo is also my ancestor!

    (Nah, just kidding. I just wanted to get in on the yichus action.)

    Actually Hesh, with yichus like that I can see why you have such a lackadaisical approach to shidduchim. You can get hitched anytime you want by just busting that little tidbit out!

  • Frum Punk April 13, 2008, 4:39 PM

    Oops. Forgot to close the bold tag.

  • Conservative Sci Fi April 13, 2008, 8:55 PM

    No yichus here.

    I’m guessing the Washington Post and Washington Jewish Week are not acceptable.

    What is great about Lubavitch is that they welcome all Jews. Whenever I hear people dissing the orthodox for intolerance, I can point to the Lubavitch as a counter example.

  • heshman April 14, 2008, 6:42 AM

    Wow no anti-Chabad comments- I think that is a first for any blog.

  • frombklyn April 14, 2008, 8:06 AM

    As usual, we love your posts FrumSatire.

    It’s a shame that Jews think that the JP is not a frum newspaper. While many of its articles are sometimes weird they consistently throw in ‘modern’ and ‘unmodern’ writers into the mix showing the full scale and depth of the Jews in America today.

  • heshman April 14, 2008, 8:37 AM

    Well what exactly is a frum newspaper. I would call it a Jewish newspaper, for all Jews. Most Jews I know would not understand the articles in the Yated, Homaodia, Jewish Week or Forward. The Jewish Press is by far the best paper for the most amounts of Jews.

    The fact that Charedim are constantly focusing on the bad is sad, because they have it in the power to bring Jews into the fold- not push them out. With soaring intermarriage rates- one would think that Charedim would be doing kiruv rather then scaring the bejeebers out of Jews.

  • "Really" Frum? April 14, 2008, 12:31 PM

    It appears that a new sect has arisen-
    “Social Orthodoxy”
    Definition: Keeping all the mitzvos that are “in style.”
    If it became “cool” to be shomer negia, all the kids would start doing it. If it was nerdy to use “yishivish” language, no one would do it.
    You can be a “frummy” (a social orthodox jew) by going to the right shul, eating at the right restaurants, using the right yishivish vocabulary, wearing the white shirt, black hat— yet watch tv beseiser, be a jerk, never have proper concentration during tefillah, and never learn a word of Torah.
    Social Orthodoxy is practically inexistant in smaller jewish communities (most likely because there’s no one to be cool in front of and impress), but sadly it is growing in the larger communities.

    Summary: You can be “frum,” but completely irreligious.

    Continue your study, Heshy. It’s interesting

  • heshman April 14, 2008, 12:38 PM

    Wow great comment- maybe I will make a post on this phenomina

    • Carmel Tziona June 4, 2012, 10:05 AM

      Singular phenomenon, plural phenomena. Is English your second language or something?

  • s(b.) April 14, 2008, 1:32 PM

    re: “never have proper concentration during tefillah”

    Unless you are the suede-denim secret police or big brother, I think the idea that anyone can judge that for anyone else means you might not be concentrating on your own davening.
    :puts “eyes of the world” on: As the song goes, sometimes the songs that we sings are the songs of our own. And some daven with siddur open, some with eyes closed. Kavanah — that’s VERY personal and not anyone else’s to judge, imo. (if you’re picking on people who talk in shul, I understand; you don’t know if they daven at home and just come to shul for the social aspect, though [even though that can be distracting to others], so I still say no one’s anyone to judge anyone else’s kavanah)

    I understand the notion of social orthodoxy. Unfortunately, people not walking their talk (so to speak), regardless of what they believe, is nothing new. The idea that it would make one feel cooler in front of others is not something that had crossed my mind. To fit in socially, maybe, for people who aren’t me, I guess.

    Living a frum (in the penguin sense of the word) lifestyle is not something I would do if I weren’t into it, spiritually. It’s a whole lot of expense (cost of kosher meat, for example) and inconvenience (keeping shabbos [also just an example]) if you’re not used to doing so. I couldn’t imagine why one would do that if doing so didn’t warm the cockles of that person’s spiritual heart. To each his own.

  • "Really" Frum? April 14, 2008, 2:09 PM

    s(b.), I agree with the kavonah retort.
    What I really meant was that it seems that “outwardly” tefillah is taken lightly by many, while people focus more on trivial things.
    It is true that no one can know what someone else is thinking during his tefilah (avodah sheb’LEV). But, the way that person TREATS tefilah can sometimes be an indication of how that person truly FEELS about tefilah, and what he will in turn THINK OF during his tefilah.

    Thank you for the comment

  • s(b.) April 14, 2008, 2:47 PM

    I hear you, man.

  • heimish in bp April 15, 2008, 1:38 PM


    you said “Living a frum (in the penguin sense of the word) lifestyle is not something I would do if I werent into it, spiritually. Its a whole lot of expense (cost of kosher meat, for example) and inconvenience (keeping shabbos [also just an example]) if youre not used to doing so. I couldnt imagine why one would do that if doing so didnt warm the cockles of that persons spiritual heart.”

    I ahve commented on this in the past, adn i will just give you a little perspective as to why the phenomenom of Socialy Orthodox, is growing by leaps and bounds in the larger communities.

    The basic point is convenience. If you look around in these communities, the only ones who leave, genrally, are the ones that havent made the cut. If you are an average guy/girl who went teh yeshivah way and get married the “regular” way by the time you get any true self bearing as to what life and God means, you are married with three small kids, who you have to feed.

    Now yes we there is one couple from Monroe, who had three kids, and both him and his wife decided its all BS, adn they dropped Yiddishkeit and moved to south Jersey adn started a support group for those who leave the Faith.

    But most guys are not willing to give it all up, and dont have the courage/chutzpa/nerve/want to break off from everything and everybody.

    So they stay “frum”, do the shake, go to shul, daven, dress like penguins, but when you sit down and have any meaningful conversation with them, you see they are totoally empty.

    Living in BP, I know hundreds of such ppl, seriously, and life goes on.

    Is it sick?? you bet it is, but thats life. And s(b), being a regular poster, you should know how not to judge why so many ppl do it.

    Will it change? I doubt it. It will only grow and grow. And yes the Crisis that all frum ppl are moving to lakewood, is true, except if you are connected somehow to a community, there is no reason you should live among Hot Chani’s and Escalades.

  • menashe April 15, 2008, 1:45 PM

    i think boro park needs a chabad house.

  • Shaul April 16, 2008, 12:00 PM

    Personally I’m a chabadsker in a yeshiva w/a rep for being anti-chabad (not say which) and I live w/it, and the JP justr recently had some problematic ads which immediately sent the frimmer velt into a outrage

  • heshman April 16, 2008, 12:43 PM

    I bet you the ads that they are referring to had been in the JP for years.

    I am shocked that they havent complained about Dr. Yael or Simcha Fuer and crew and the articles they write EVERY week about husband and wife swapping, women discovering their husbands watch porn 9gasp) and about kids on drugs. The Yated leaves these issues for the readers write section while the JP publishes them in articles- which is the only thing of interest to me in the whole paper.

    Like all Jewish Papers the JP is only interesting if you care for Israeli politics, knowing how to wash and set your sheitle and reading about chasunahs in the chassidish world.

  • M April 16, 2008, 1:31 PM

    Hey- my great great grandpa wasn’t R’ Shlomo Ganzfried but he was _friends_ with R’ Shlomo Ganzfried.
    I have plenty of yichus of my own but here isn’t the place to shout it out.

  • s(b.) April 16, 2008, 2:31 PM

    my yichus can beat up your yichus. (Totally kidding!)
    heimish, I’m working on a response. will probably post it on my own blog [it’s long], which I ought to get started. will post a link here when it’s up.

  • heshman April 16, 2008, 2:34 PM

    Hey its kind of like those bumper stickers- my son can kick the crap out of your honor rolled son.

    Or Jesus loves you but everyone else thinks your an asshole.

  • heimish in bp April 16, 2008, 3:31 PM

    Anxiously anticipating it.

  • menashe April 17, 2008, 12:03 AM

    hey I’m a direct descendent of Avraham Avinu!

    Along with a certain someone that changed history forever, but a bit more recently than aforementioned. He shall remain nameless.

    Beat that.

  • s(b.) April 17, 2008, 12:36 PM

    heimish, blog’s up.

  • Matisforever April 22, 2008, 8:57 PM

    Interesting, my mom isn’t big on lubavitchers at all, she thinks they are scary and kinda cult like. I am not big on the entire messianic chabad, i like the Rebbe and all he had some good stuff that is really cool, but lets not go overboard. But really they run their outreach program real far, with rolling out the welcome mat for all the other jews (really the part my mom isn’t big on).

  • Rafi April 27, 2008, 11:46 PM

    Im really starting to love YWN. Every time you bring them up, there are at least 70 posts. I feel like the YWN MOD posts a 6 line article, and stays up all night awaiting the hundreds of repeated responses, Crum arguments, insults, and hilariously ignorant comments. A true sadist. 🙂

  • Shaul July 9, 2008, 10:12 AM

    Well, since people seem to like stating their yichus here, My great…(9 doros) grandfather, direct male line, was first cousins with the alter rebbe (Baal hatanya) and married to the sister of Reb Aharon Hagodol of Karlin, and Im descended from the rikanti (Reb Mordechai Yoffe), and am cousins of the slonimer, so mimaileh a cousin of R. Shmuel Yaakov Weinberg ZTVK”L which is sorta ironic b/c I’m a chabdsker.

  • enlightened cousin April 1, 2010, 11:46 AM

    BTW Hesh i am your cousin (not the yeshivish one- MYR) and you are Rav Shlomo’s great great great grandson. not just two greats. for me its 4 greats.
    P.S. some family members are kinda pissed about this blog. not me though

  • Carmel Tziona June 4, 2012, 10:08 AM

    Reform confused English girl here. Why does everyone need to have an opinion on Chabad and Lubavitch people – why can’t it just be like “Jews, great. Kiruv, great. Good deeds, great” and just kind of leave it? Why do they all hate each other?

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