The difference between being Frum and being Frummy

The difference between being frum and being a frummy can be as simple as having English seforim on your bookshelf and leaving the stems of the broccoli on while serving chicken and broccoli in a Chinese restaurant. The difference between being a frummy and being frum can also be huge. I intend to tell you why you are a frummy?

The ad for your hotel on Pesach is all about the negative and things that are not allowed. Rather then writing about the Olympic sized pool, amazing food, and 300 acres of lush greenery the hotel will be situated on. The ad in the Jewish press states that there will only be separate swimming, non gebrokts, chasidishe schita, daf yomi, private sedorim, and a bunch of other stuff that one not need to leave Lakewood and pay an exorbitant amount of money for. The smorgasbord at all your simchas consists of power washed star-k lettuce salad with mangos and strawberries, that ghetto frozen soggy broccoli salad and some sliced veggies with a bowl of Vidalia onion dressing. You only go to frummy concerts with separate seating, Blue fringe is considered goyishe music, Matisyahu is a heretic because he is Lubavitch. You wont read the Jewish press because it has pictures of women. Pretty much everything that is qesutionable no matter what it is, is assur. If your sect doesn’t ban something every week the higher ups start giving out pink slips(well maybe white since pink is not tznius). You wear a mask over your mouth since you heard that its not only water with microscopic bugs but also the air contains them- though this maybe a Jainism practice thereby making it assur due to idol worship of some sort. You burned all your Indian hair sheitles and only drink filtered water no matter what. You only buy power washed lettuce and frozen broccoli. Salmon with dill sauce, sushi and deli roll are all the rage. Sexual abuse by Rabbis is covered up because it will hurt the image of the community as well as any other controversial issue such as homosexuality, domestic abuse, and infidelity. You have not spoken out against the Niturei Karta. Bush is the best president ever in your mind, and all of your news comes daily in the Hamodia. You think all men with long hair are drug dealers, and use the N— word to describe black people like there’s no issue.

On shabbos you wont even use tissues, rather you pre-cut toilet paper and leave it on the sink. You tape your light switches every shabbos and the whole day is spent in shabbos clothes no matter what the weather. Your idea of a vacation is an inspirational yarchei kallah shabatone. You wont use your cell phone ringer during sfira because its like music. You make people laugh by doing Paysach Kron imitations with his whole yarmulke falling off his head deal. There is never enough skach on anyones skkah and you always make a point of complaining. You check your moror with a magnifying glass before th seder. During Chanukah you join the exodus from Boro-Park and go to Chelsea peirs to ice skate, or maybe sportsworld, Hunter Mountain to ski in your skirts and bekishas, or maybe to the lower eastside Tenement Museum.   

You only go to bungalow colonies with the prison walls surrounding the pool. The homowack is considered modern orthodox. Modern orthodoxy is a goyishe zach. Your children stare at any non-frum or non Jewish people that come in close contact to them. You drive a 15 seater van. You don’t drink brand name sodas, only mayim chaim and be’er Mayim. All of the nosh in your covert is from brands like paskez and leibers. Even your ketchup and mayonnaise is from heimishe brands like ungers and hadar. Your children all have peyos behind their ears. You husband has a weekday hat and a shabbos hat. You wear those all black sneakers that pose as weekday shoes. A mechitza in a restaurant is not a bad idea. You love taking the mechitza bus. Your idea of the west is Miami. You think the world ends after Rockland County except when the ice floes clear up in the summer allowing access to the mountains other wise known as the Catskills. The only secular magazine in your house is mishpacha and sometimes readers digest but it is always in the bathroom. Your kids all have the same outfits and the boys wear vests a lot. Chop and Nosh and Big Fleishigs are your favorite restaurants and Dougies reserved is for fancy dates with your spouse.

Your sheitle looks like a dead animal. Non of the benchers in your house say “the wedding of” they all say “ simchas nisooyin shell”. You have a bunch of seforim and torah tapes littering the front seat of car. You have yeshiva net in your house and your children go to a school that will kick your kids out if they look at a TV. You ask potential shidduchs for your children or others if they scrape or stack their plates when bringing them in, the color of the table cloth can make or break a shidduch as well as the viscosity of the cholent. All the shidduchim go to hotel lobbies, the airport or a lounge, in the summer they go Battery Park city. Monsey is considered upstate NY and Lakewood is where your young married children will move, unless they find a cheap basement in Boro-Park or Monsey. You use words like dafka, takka, nisrynos, taivas, nishka freilich and the Abishta on a regular basis. You only wear the big woolen tzitzis. When playing Jewish geography or introducing yourself to people you only use last names and have a hand shake similar to a gay mans.

You have two separate fridges, you have a milchig and fleishig ketchup bottle and the little stereo to the right of your sink always plays some heimishe melodies. If it doesn’t say heimishe its not kosher enough for you. Some weddings you go to have separate buildings for the men and women. Chofetz Chaim and Ner Israel yeshivas are modernish. Your children have no idea who Harry Potter is. When you go to an amusement park, someone has rented it out and it is only single sex that day. Your daughters if they go to college can only choose the following careers. OT, PT, Speech Pathology, Social Work, School Psychologist, Sheitle washer and setter, heimishe Brooklyn office secretary, bookkeeper, stenographer, early childhood education, special education and in a rare circumstance a public school teacher as long as she works for the Kiryas Joel Central School District.

Red is strictly forbidden and when someone asks you if someone is frum you always refer to some sort of external appearance such as pants, sheitle yarmulke type or whether they wear a black hat. Just because you rock the sthtreimel or spuddick doesn’t make you a frummy by the way. Frummies are a breed of chumra’d up folks. They do things just so other people will think their frum it seems. Like a mechitza in a restaurant, give me a break or forcing folks to have a mechitza at a wedding. Or maybe a mechitza on a bus, whats the matter you don’t have faith in your own people to act decently. How about that time I ordered chicken and broccoli at the Glatt Wok in Monsey and they gave me chicken and stems- that is so frummy. Or a bunch of kids asking me if I was Jewish even though I was wearing a yarmulke. Or how about that Rabbi is the Boyaner Chussid camp who asked me if I wanted to put on tefilin even though I was wearing a yarmulke and tzitzis. I even had a black velvet yarmulke on- doesn’t that give me a get out of jail free pass or something.

Frum is merely another way of saying someone is orthodox. It has somehow been hijacked as a terminology to mean someone who is “more” then modern, because modern as been deemed negative in the “frum” world. That is why we must set the record straight between “frum” and “frummy” Just because you are frummy doesn’t mean you are frum. And just because your “modern doesn’t automatically kick you out of frum status though many people like to think so. What is the deal with thinking modern is not frum? What happened to the days when modern meant that you enjoyed secular interests such as reading, museums and music while retaining the look and practice of a frum Jew? You know Rabbis who didn’t automatically deem things as assur due to the common held practice that “we just don’t do things that way” rather then finding a good reason to ban something as dumb as denim skirts or the color red. Nothing like alienating a whole bunch of folks while speeding up assimilation at the same time-for stupidity eh?