13 Annoying Things About That Stupid Jew In the City Article

by Chaya Miriam Fried

I happen to like Allison, really, but that article left me seriously irritated. I don’t get the sudden outflow of Public Relations pieces among the orthodox. Since when do we care what non-Jews think of us? Kiruv is for Jews, not everybody else. Last time I checked, our whole deal was to be different (you know, like the whole staying solidly Jewish in Mitzrayim thing). Why is it necessary to provide an outline of Jewish stereotypes? Is this The Anti-Semites Handbook or something?

 

  1. Jews have sex through a hole in the sheet.  We don’t, so are you interested in laying that rumor or rest, or just talking about it? Now I know there’s a whole machloikes about this, but some say the idea came from the Nazis, who thought everything we did was through a hole in the sheet…the easiest way for them to describe a talis katan. If we never want to hear that again, tell your clowning friend the Nazi story about where the words came from and watch their facial features sober up real quick. Trust me, it’ll stop.

  2. Wearing a wig/shaving your head.  Bullshit. No goy I know ever had clue that I was wearing a sheitl unless I brought it up myself, and the ones that do know about it assume I’ve still got hair halfway down my back. Plus I’ve got news for you: as much as a hapless geyorus as I am, I did cut it ALL off when I got married, so maybe more of the ladies are shorn than Allison even realizes.

  3. Subjugated woman.  I applaud the author on this one. It’s an ugly stereotype for sure, but it gets tossed around about all deeply religious people of all faiths, and it’s lame to play the victim on this one.

  4. Non-working woman.  Never heard anyone say that. No one’s ever looked over the water cooler at me and asked, “Soooo, what brings you here today?”

  5. Ten kids/lack of birth control.  Again, don’t play the victim. That’s what they say about Mormons and Catholics, not Jews. Generally, people are completely in the dark about Jews and have more interesting things to do than speculate about their offspring.

  6. Don’t believe in science.  Last time I checked, Jews were known for rocking the science world. Creationism? Again, not a Jewish problem, it’s a Genesis problem, and that covers a whole lot more than us.

  7. Hasidic.  Nobody thinks all orthodox Jews are Hasidic; it’s more like they know all Hasidim are orthodox Jews. Does that make sense? In other words, say they walk past some misnaged guy on the street. They don’t know he’s an orthodox Jew, they just think he’s dressed like a guy out of an old detective movie.

  8. Kosher = blessed by a rabbi.  This is a big one, yes, but it’s not annoying. It’s a sign of ignorance. Still, I wasn’t put on this earth to teach everyone the realities of Judaism. It’s my religion, not theirs and I don’t care if they understand the ins and outs of it or not.

  9. Can’t wear stylish clothes.  If I’m dressed like shit when they meet me, then yeah, I could see where they’d get that from. Otherwise nobody cares enough to comment on it.

  10. All men are rabbis.  That’s not annoying either, it’s cute. Who wouldn’t want to be respected as a holy man even if it’s only by accident?

  11. We’re rock-throwing, gay-bashing, judgmental child-molester supporters. Wow, way to jump it up a notch. Last time I checked we were just money-hungry. Again, it’s way bigger in Allison’s mind than it is among the non-Jews’. Besides, that eighth-year-old was dressed like a slut.

  12. Gefilte fish/borscht/subpar foods. The extent of the average person’s knowledge about kashrus: “You don’t eat pork, right?” Nobody delves into the quality let alone the selection of foods we can eat. If they cruise the kosher aisle at the supermarket, they know we also eat Tradition soups and matzo crackers, too. That’s good food, right?

  13. You drink Manischewitz wine and listen to klezmer music, right?  You’re damn right we do.

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  • http://woodrowconservadox.wordpress.com Woodrow/Conservadox

    I’m totally with you on the Manishevitz thing.

  • Funny stuff

    Funny material. I didn’t read the original article yet, but speaking as someone from a secular Jewish background, to me it sounds like she wants to break stereotypes held by non-religious Jews more than non- Jews. As you pointed out, non-Jews don’t even know enough about us to have these stereotypes, but secular Jews do.

    • http://www.frumsatire.net Heshy Fried

      I would like to compare Orthodox Jews to Muslims, as long as they are blowing themselves up and we are rioting in the streets over bike lanes and mixed seating on the buses – you can be as apologetic as you want, but the stereotypes won’t change.

      There are a heck of a lot of Muslims who probably don’t blow themselves up, but this is our stereotype of them.

    • Anonymous

      Yeah, that’s what I was going to say. That a lot of those sterotypes are held by non-Orthodox Jews.

  • manny

    You cut off all your hair when you got married? Did you consult with your fiancé first? Because that would really turn me off.

    • http://www.frumsatire.net Heshy Fried

      Oh we consulted and she looks super cute, I wish she would have done it when we were dating.

      • Yochanan

        Like Sinead O’Connor?

    • The Mrs.

      Of course I consulted my husband, but you seem to be more focused on whether or not I consulted you.

      Have you ever considered that it’s far more comfortable to cut it all off, or is your satisfaction with my hair more important than that? In other words, mind your own business.

      • The Mrs.

        Two shits and a damn? I’m flattered that you even noticed.

        • Telz Angel

          that will be two hail marys, one our fathers, $10 to the charity box and you are forgiven. Now wash out your mouth with soap and you can partake this week. I’ll see you next week. remember, no touching yourself.

          • michaltastik

            At $5 a candle? You pay to light a candle at the Catholic church, honor system leave it in the box.

  • michali

    To Chaya,

    What do you mean by the term ‘hapless geyorus’? Also, why the need to use such language (curses) in your writing to get your point across?

    • Anonymous

      Because cursing is fucking good

  • Yochanan

    I believe the hole-in-the-sheet rumor came not from the Nazis, but from the people living in the Lower East Side tenements and seeing the Jews hang their laundry.

    I’m a BT and have noticed many people who mix up Orthodox and Chasidic.

    • Person

      “All men are rabbis. That’s not annoying either, it’s cute. Who wouldn’t want to be respected as a holy man even if it’s only by accident?”

      It is only a problem when ya know… those “rabbis” do something like throw rocks at little girls, engage in deplorable acts with children, kiss and hug iranian leaders, etc. “THOSE ARE THE LEADERS OF THE JEWS???” Yeah that ending isn’t so cute.

      • Anonymous

        It’s because of the 58 pct tax write off just like the blacks who are all pastors

  • Anonymous

    I find this article-bashing ridiculous. “Jew in the City” isn’t for non-Jews as much as it breaks stereotypes for secular Jews. I happen to work in a kiruv organization and one of the people I work with actually said something along the lines of, “but you don’t believe in science…” believe me, he’s well aware that I’m modern orthodox and not Haredi, yet he assumed simply because I’m religious.
    While I can see the humor in your satire here, I find it distasteful because many of the things she addressed are things that secular Jews and even some of my non-Jewish co-workers and classmates have thought and asked me about. A Greek-Orthodox classmate of mine last semester actually asked me if I’m going to cover my hair when I’m married because she’s heard about the practice being that she works in a clothing store on Main Street, Queens. When I told her that yes, I do plan on doing that, she got quiet for a moment and said, “but your hair is so pretty. shaving it off seems like such a waste!” So yes, it is something to be addressed. No, not everyone knows.
    And you cutting your hair off? There’s a big difference between cutting it short and shaving it off.
    Allison’s article may have left you irritated, but your article left me angry.

    • Telz Angel

      I agree with Chaya on this one. The article was stupid since it shined the spotlight on the things we like to say “hey don’t look here.” All it does is cause people to look. I’d rather see an article called “13 wonderful things uniquely Jewish that other people can be inspired by.” — OK, maybe try to find 6 if the bar is set too high — OK at least 4.

      BTW, Ms Anonymous, your friend is right, it is a shame that you will shave your pretty hair. You can address it with all sorts of apologetics, but the fact is that society values pretty hair and expects religious people to see it as a gift from God to appreciate. Of course people wonder why in your right mind you would cut it off. Especially when we all know that modesty has nothing to do with hair.

      The reason you will cover your head is for the same reason we do many chumras these days: “so that other people in the community will eat at our house.” That’s the reason, and if your kiruv targets pick up on this hypocrisy, they will no longer follow you to frumkiet. So I’d suggest covering this reason with a wig, since letting that be noticed will be scarier than seeing some hair on a woman’s head.

      • Anonymous

        Well of course I appreciate you calling me a hypocrite. And I think that you might want to pick up a gemara and then tell me again that it’s a chumra? I certainly don’t judge anyone else for not covering their hair so I would appreciate if you wouldn’t make snide comments like that, assuming that the way I see fit to connect to God is merely for social reasons.
        Furthermore, I’m not going to shave my hair if you didn’t quite get that. Of course I’ll keep my hair underneath a covering. I’m not Satmar Chassidish, as I mentioned above (although I don’t like to put myself in a category) I identify as Modern Orthodox.
        And I haven’t once had anyone call me a hypocrite when it comes to “frumkeit”because I haven’t given them reason to see me as such. Whenever there is something that I do that I don’t have an explanation for them, I tell them.

        • Whaaaat?

          I just did a control+F on this article and you were the one that used the word hypocrite, not Telz. Somebody’s a little pissy today.

          • Anonymous

            Clever with the control F option, but Telz said “and if your kiruv targets pick up on this hypocrisy”
            hypocrisy and hypocrite go hand in hand. Thanks though, Whaaaat? Clever title.

            • Whaaaat?

              I didn’t see him calling her a hypocrite, I saw him refer to the hypocrisy of chumras.

            • Telz Angel

              Anonymous is upset at a perceived attack against her, under the alias “anonymous” — which is kinda funny, since if you are personalizing the attack then you don’t fully understand the idea of being anonymous.

              As Oscar Wilde said “Give a man a mask and he’ll tell you the truth.”

              • A

                Oh come off your high horse. You directly attacked her due to an obvious misunderstanding of what she said.

          • A

            Wow, you really need reading comprehension skills.

    • The Mrs.

      “So yes, it is something to be addressed. No, not everyone knows.”

      But does everyone have to know? How does that affect you, whether someone thinks you’re cutting/shaving/keeping it?

      I don’t even get how you could become angry about this. There must be some major beef that you’re not sharing here.

      • Anonymous

        And “Mrs” my “major beef” is when people make fun of other people for trying to make a difference. Jew in the City is doing a great thing by trying to get rid of some of the confusion and misconceptions about orthodox Jewry.
        It matters to me if people think that I’m shaving my head because in the world of kiruv if a girl thinks she’s going to have to shave her head if she decides she wants to be religious and cover her hair, that’s a pretty big obstacle.

        • The Mrs.

          Then why is it on a world wide web magazine if it’s directed towards kiruv targets? I understand what you’re saying, but she’s cast the net to the other 99.8%. Seems like a giant waste of space to reach .2% of the population.

          • Anonymous

            Was your post for the world wide web or was it for the .2% of the population that even knows what it’s making fun of?
            And I would hardly call any cause a waste of space.
            And for the already orthodox Jews a lot of what she posts is interesting. Anything posted directed toward Jews ever is for a tiny portion of the population, so I don’t really know what you’re getting at here.

            • The Mrs.

              This is a satire site for the frum, or maybe you missed something. This isn’t a secular news magazine, just an obnoxious Jewish one. Big difference.

              • Anonymous

                Obnoxious being the key word.

    • michaltastik

      Anon, I call BS on your story. Women in Kew Gardens Hills do NOT shave their heads. Most of them don’t cover their hair at home even. Also, the shops on Main street employ Israeli women, not goyot.

    • Anonymous

      Get over it can’t hide from the rest if the world forever
      Time to get with it

  • chevramaidel

    #4: There are whole communities where all the women are expected to work as long as possible (until those ten kids start showing up) to support their husbands who are learning.
    #10: Funny story from the ’70s (Google some old pictures if you weren’t around then). A male friend said he went hat shopping on a trip to New York City. He picked out a nice fedora, and when he paid, the shopkeeper said, “Thank you, Rabbi! Come again!” My friend said, “I’m not a rabbi.” Shopkeeper: “There are two kinds of men who buy those hats. Pimps, and rabbis. You’re a rabbi!”
    #13: I have never seen Manischewitz in an Orthodox home, either.

    • Anonymous

      I have. Mostly the shehakol varieties (blackberry, cherry, etc.), which are handy in various situations. Perhaps it’s an out-of-town thing.

  • chevramaidel

    I know a few Orthodox Jews, not Chasidim either but supposedly mainstream Orthodox, who are into the whole anti-science thing. According to them, anyone who believes in evolution is an apikoros. Creation in literally six days, literally 5773 years ago. So yes, they do exist.

    • The Mrs.

      Is that denying science as a whole, or simply the Big Bang theory

      • Telz Angel

        In my yeshiva high school, our science books had sections stapled shut and words crossed out with a black sharpie. Anything phrase that contained “millions of years ago” was crossed out. Anything about evolution of the species was crossed out. The whole chapter that contained high-school text-book style images of human reproductive organs was stapled shut.

        They did not deny science, they agreed with every piece of science that happened to stated in the gemara or was irrefutable by opening your eyes (e.g. that airplanes fly). But the certainly denied that science has any command of fact, since the moment a fact might challenge their belief, they crossed it out with a sharpie so we would not be exposed to it.

        I know Yeshiva musmachim who seriously believe that the world is 5773 years old not more or less. I’ve asked them if it is possible that the world is really 5873, and they insist that it cannot be. Then I showed them sefer Seder Haolam which has debates about how long various periods of history were. For example, there’s a machlokes about which year Purim took place and if Mordechai was old or young at the time — it’s possible that our accounting of the 5773 number could be wrong by about 100 years, or maybe 14 billion years, give or take. But to the closed minded, nothing is possible except for Da’as Toirah.

        • http://www.frumsatire.net Heshy Fried

          and that was in the days before the yeshiva world moved to the right…

    • Alter Cocker

      yep, that’s what Alison said. There are some extremist Jews who deny science.

  • Debra Walk

    Re: Gefilte fish/borscht/subpar foods
    Conversation at a Weight Watchers meeting in CT:
    WW Leader mentions gefilte fish.
    Gentiles ask what gefilte fish is.
    WW Leader: Don’t even think of trying it. If you’re not Jewish, you’ll think it’s disgusting.

  • Ari Gold

    I’d actually say that most of these are true for Ultra-Orthodox Jews. The main point one should get from the article is that not all orthodox Jews are “ultra-orthodox” – not that those myths are way off. (e.g. subjugated women, which is totally legit, or the anti-science crowd which is also completely legit.) Just keep in mind that though orthodox Jews in general have crazy beliefs, they’re not as crazy as the beliefs – and actions – of the ultra-orthodox (hasids and haredim).

  • Dan

    Yeah, jew in the city’s article was idiotic.

  • chanah

    Chaya,

    you make it sound as if you condone what these men in Beit Shemesh did to the little girl. To me, it doesn’t matter how Naama wa dressed, it never justifies spitting at her.

    • The Mrs.

      Chana, you do know what satire means, right?

      • chanah

        I do. And I usually have no trouble detecting it. But the majority of your post, and in particular the majority of point 11 (which is what we are talking about), doesn’t seem particularly satirical to me. Instead, it seems to be a pretty serious and honest rebuttal of this article you linked.
        My bad if that wasn’t the case and I didn’t pick up on it.

  • X

    I usually like her too, although lately I’ve been getting annoyed: so many of her articles are about how the non-orthodox Jews/non-Jews supposedly view the orthodox Jews as negative, and then her “proving” them wrong and yadayada… I used to read her to learn more about Judaism, not to look at a pissing contest in which the orthodox prove that they’re just as good as anyone else (not that they aren’t, of course, but bragging kinda defeats the purpose). Her last video was a great example of that… Booooring.

    Oh and seriously, the title of this article ticked me off: “13 Annoying Things MOST people assume”? Um, that’s kinda harsh for those who DON’T assume those things, so give us the benefit of the doubt and drop the “most.” We’re not all ignorant twits who believe “annoying” things.

    I dunno if I’m being overly sensitive here, but yeah. Just my two cents.

    • http://www.frumsatire.net Heshy Fried

      It’s called, the guilty BT syndrome, when you start to find ways to justify your “extremism” to your open minded friends. This is when you start to find clever ways to make us look open minded, but religion is never open minded or cool.

  • Nesya

    OK so maybe most of the article is apologetic and self-righteous, but just reading the comments make you see how she’s really responding to other Jews’ perception of Orthodoxy-for example, the following comment seems to support her item # 11: “Come see a Hasidic enclave like Boro Park or Williamsburg, and then see how much fun it is to be Orthodox.” As if Orthodox = Hassidic. So you can’t really say “Nobody thinks all orthodox Jews are Hasidic” because clearly it’s out there and maybe she’s experienced it more than you have.

    • Nesya

      I mean #7 (why can’t I edit my post?)

  • Yochanan

    Maybe there should be a reverse of this:

    13 Annoying Things Orthodox Jews Think About Everyone Else

  • Anonymous

    Spot on !

  • Erudite

    Actually the hole in the sheet thing is brought down in the Talmud Yerushalmi Yevamot page 1b
    Look it up
    Its talking about doing the yibum ceremony and not getting pleasure from it

    • http://learningtosaynothing.blogspot.com Lost and Found

      Erudite, fascinating. I found that difficult to believe, so I looked it up myself and there it was. Thanks for sharing.

  • Edward

    What an ugly site, from none other than an ugly jew. I hate you animals.

  • Anonymous

    You all are weird get with this century

  • Anonymous

    Hypocrites with timers then bother the non Jew to reset them
    Live in the dark as you do in reality
    Try colors stop inbreeding

  • Anonymous

    Lazy, crude rude and filthy
    Typical slumlords only do things when
    Forced to Shabbos my ass just an excuse to
    Get out of an obligation

    • Alter Cocker

      what the hell is this?

  • Anonymous

    Vut???

  • Anonymous

    Spy vs Spy meets phlegm

    • Alter Cocker

      Do you speak English?

      • Anonymous

        Yes American flag waving English
        I don’t leave the country to have kids
        For citizenship in a foreign land
        Accept Jesus and be forgiven
        The messiah was here already and you
        Killed him do you really think he’s going to come
        Back just to go through it again?

        • Anonymous

          Yea good for you anon tell em!!!!