What is the biggest Kiddush Hashem?

B and H photo and video superstore is in my opinion one of the biggest Kiddush Hashem’s that is out there. Its rare that you see such a Kiddush Hashem that is able to take place on a daily basis and touch so many hearts and souls. I went to B and H right before my trip to Spain and Israel, my laptop is nearing 7 years old, in techno years its certifiably ancient, with an 80 gig hard drive and no webcam or built in mic. I had decided it was time to upgrade but couldn’t afford a Macbook and didn’t want to skimp this time, I also wanted to something portable that I would be able to type on and so after much debates in my head while standing at Best Buy I decided to purchase a netbook.

For those of you who don’t know, a netbook is fully functioning mini-computer. They come in two major sizes, 8.9 and 10.2 inch screen and range from microscopic keyboard to 92% of normal. Netbooks have batteries that last up to 10 hours and the only downside if that they do not contain and DVD drive.

Based on reviews on Cnet and physically trying out different Netbooks I knew what I wanted, Best Buy near Far Rockaway was sold out for the interim and so I ventured into the city to buy one at B and H. One hour parking is free for purchases over $100 and that makes it very convenient if you know what you want.

I love B and H, because its one big electronics paradise and because 80% of the people working there are Jews, plus I have a bunch of buddies who work there and every time I go I give my card out to random people. All of the Jews standing around in vests, talking to people and giving receipts out (you do not hold your items until its time to checkout – all the items are shuffled through the store via a serious of conveyor belts and you get receipts for each item purchased) makes the situation look like a Chassidish stock exchange.

B and H probably has the worlds largest group of hockers under one roof, but they are paid to hock and they probably love it. Jewish geography is common when looking for a new Ipod, or computer or $5,000 camera lens. Don’t get me wrong, the people in the store are predominantly not Jewish and that’s why its so great. Imagine a different place in which massive amounts of non-Jews come in close contact with Ultra-Orthodox Jews and come back without a negative feeling.

Its unfortunate but true, how many instances can you think of when Charedi Jews make a good impression on non-Jews and irreligious Jews on a constant basis. Its unfortunate, but much of the world only has negative experience and rarely see the beauty of the ultra-orthodox community.

Just like at the Matisyahu show I attended and felt very proud to be an orthodox Jew, walking into B and H photo and video gives me a sense of nachas that is hard to replicate.

For those of you interested I bought the Asus EEE-PC 1000HA Netbook. It cost $295 with a $30 rebate, and comes with 160 gigs of hard drive space, 1 gig of ram , 10.2 inch screen, 7 hour battery life (5.40 is the most I have gotten so far) and a 92% of normal keyboard. After 2 weeks of solid use I can say I am very satisfied with my purchase and proud to support such a store as B and H.

They are also the only company I know of that closes their website on shabbos and holidays.

Can you tell me about any other Kiddushei Hashem’s?

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Boomie

    Hesh…are you growing up? This was a wonderful, heartfelt article you wrote. Who can argue with you? Recently I have read other blogs and reviews about B&H; all from mainstream tech people. They all agree that it’s got the best prices and selection, but more importantly, the best service and advice. I don’t know how they train their salespeople, but corporate America could take a few lessons from them! Nice piece.

  • http://www.balebusta.wordpress.com balebusta

    Love this post….so true…I agree about B&H being a good experience…when my FMIL and FFIL moved to Miami, my FMIL wanted to become more observant….orthodox….but when they were greeted rudely and had bad interactions with the local charedi communities (kids throwing rocks at my fiance and his little brother bc they weren’t religious enough) she decided to stay conservadox…if that’s the experience a Jew had I can only imagine what non-Jews interactions might have been….long winded circuitous way of saying, yeah, good for B&H for being a good example to non-Jews that chareidi folks aren’t all dumpster burner crazies….plus, I am really in need of a new laptop and now I think I will go check out the inventory at B&H next week…

  • m00kie

    this post is a kidush hashem

  • http://freshwater-phil.blogspot.com Phil

    I’ve heard about them, never been there myself as crossborder shopping/shipping gets expensive for electronics and computers.

    BTW, there is no need to close a website for Shabbos, even if it’s making sales on Shabbos. I confirmed this with a Rav a number of years ago when creating a first web site.
    At most, you can put a disclaimer not to use the site on Shabbos or Yom Tov, but it isn’t necessary. The big Jewish websites such as Chabad and Aish run, and even accept donations on Shabbos.

  • http://www.facebook.com/DBerger2 David

    It is a very big Kiddush hashem

  • http://www.thejewishside.blogspot.com Jewish Side

    Great Post, I’m proud to know many people who work at B&H!

  • http://www.bhphotovideo.com/ Henry Posner

    Thank you. This is very gratifying and much appreciated.


    Henry Posner
    B&H Photo-Video

  • http://jewishstavropol.blogspot.com Zvi

    Agreed.

    Beautiful article, and what a kiddush hashem they make!

    This aside form the fact that they bring in some ‘at-risk’ guys and put them together with good role models who are frum.

    And have you ever been to the offices? they’ve got a kosher kitchen, regular minyanim…

    I’m very impressed. What a kiddush hashem.

  • Boomie

    Phil-

    Maybe it is permissible to keep your website going on Shabbos and Yom Tov; I don’t know. But you have to admit the owner of B&H has been blessed with a very successful business. I doubt whether he even asked a shailo as to whether he could. He prefers not to do any business on Shabbos. Truthfully, another Kiddush Hashem.

  • http://freshwater-phil.blogspot.com Phil

    Boomie,

    It definitely is permissible leave a website running on Shabbos, even if it’s making money for you. This was confirmed by a competent Rav.

    I’m not knocking the fact that they close theirs on Shabbos, just saying it’s not necessary. I don’t think going overboard is necessarily a kiddush Hashem.

    For example, using mouthwash on Shabbos is permitted. Does anyone who comes to shul with foul smelling breath create a kiddush Hashem by being machmir and not using it?

    I’m sure the owner is a great guy, gives a lot of tzedaka, etc. He also hires other Jews and helps them make a living. That in itself is surely part of their success.

  • http://welcomebalance.blogspot.com s(b.)

    Are there female employees at B&H? I haven’t been there in years. Knowing that the employees are as observant as they are, I’d try to find a female employee to help me, if I were to go there. Or does the more observant staff have no problem helping female customers because it’s business, not social? I haven’t been there in years, and I don’t think I needed help.

  • MOSHE

    FRUM SATIRIST: This may be first time I’ve every completly agreed with you.

  • http://www.jewishhigh.com Psycho

    Amen.

  • CE

    This is such a feelgood post!

  • http://guesswhoscoming2dinner.blogspot.com G6

    Though everything you posted is TRUE, the cynic in me can’t help but wonder what you – the guy who never posts “feel good” stuff – is hoping to “get” out of this post….
    C’mon…. ‘fess up……. :P

  • http://tefillindate.blogspot.com/?zx=45eb138631d699d5 TefillinDate.com

    Heshy, you are no longer the king of “frum porn” in Google searches. TefillinDate.com got you beat, and it’s got the real deal.

    Time to look for a new SEO technique, buddy. :)

    Oh, and FrumVids.com is growing faster than YouPorn.

  • Harry Poleman

    I prefer best buy and try to get stuff from a teenager who is oriental or indian since they are smarterest

  • http://www.bhphotovideo.com/ Henry Posner

    “Are there female employees at B&H? I haven’t been there in years. Knowing that the employees are as observant as they are, I’d try to find a female employee to help me, if I were to go there. Or does the more observant staff have no problem helping female customers because it’s business, not social?”

    We have many female employees, although quite a few work in departments other than our retail store. Our diverse store staff is perfectly comfortable working with ANY customer.

    Henry Posner
    B&H Photo-Video

  • http://eyekanspel.blogspot.com eyekanspel

    I bought the Asus EEE PC 1000HE at newegg.com. The claim is 9.5 hours of battery life. Though this claim is a bit over the top (isn’t it always that way with battery life estimations?), the battery is nonetheless phenomenal. It was well worth the $400, and newegg certainly beats B&H for me. And to answer the question, no I do not work for newegg.com.

  • http://nemosramblings.blogspot.com Nemo

    Kiddush Hashem, eh? Even with the massive employment discrimination suit?

  • http://www.frumsatire.net Frum Satire

    Nemo – we are talking about a Jewish company here, at least they don’t have meth labs and prostitution rings.

    I didn’t get anything to write this post – although now that you say that maybe I could try. I have a bunch of buddies who work in the corporate offices and apparently there is an entire office that reads my stuff.

    Shout out to Joey Aron, Paul Rosenzweig, Ari Roth and Motti Wein – B and H representing

  • http://welcomebalance.blogspot.com s(b.)

    Thanks, Harry. :)

  • JewIT

    Mr. Frum Satire,

    Since I enjoy your website I will provide with some free IT consultation as a token of gratitude to the many laughs i get from this website.

    1. Battery Life- If you want to get the most out of your laptop battery do the following; Set Dim screen to the lowest settings, Turn off wireless internet, Shut off the webcam, Close various processes that the computer is running.

    2. Speed – Since I have dealt with your model numerous times, I know that you can upgrade it to 2gigs of RAM which would make it a bit faster than normal laptops. Another thing you can do is start-my computer-properties-advanced-performance settings- adjust to what best for performance-apply (your computer might flicker for a second) and then your computer will work 15% faster but it kinda loses the windows XP flair

    3. Programs – First rule of netbooks DO NOT INSTALL ITUNES! (this will make your computer really slow)
    The following is a list of programs that I have installed on my personal netbook (Samsung nc10) firefox, google chrome (internet browsers), VLC media player, rocket dock(you will like this one, it is a common program with macs), digsby(swiss army knife for IM and social networking), launchy(Easy command line), foxit reader(for pdf’s), 7zip(winzip alternative =all of this is open source (which means it is free0 all you need to do is google them and then download them to your computer

    You are welcome for all of the above continue your good work

    JewishIT

  • Ariella

    I love them, back in NYC I did the “Darkroom in a bathroom” thing and I got most of my supplies there. But i do admit that I have cheated on them with Adorama (also a big Kiddush Hashem). There is nowhere to get this stuff in DC. I am very much involved in the art photography community here, and we LOVE B&H! (J&R for home appliances though).

  • http://www.adorama.com Helen Oster

    Hi Ariella

    Thank you so much for mentioning Adorama Camera, which, as you say, is also such a Kiddush Hashem.

    Helen Oster
    Adorama Camera Customer Service Ambassador

  • just asking

    Now, please tell, what’s the biggest chillel Hashem?

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