Every once in a while I get stuck in shul during a really boring speech. Either I couldn’t make a fast getaway during yikum porkun, or I was too busy staring at the girls while they raised the curtians of the ezras nushim for a torah kiss, all I know is that when I get stuck in a really boring speech, its a glimpse of hell for me. For me there is only so much you can do when this happens.
Things to occupy yourself with during a boring shabbos sermon:
Examine the insides of the ear of the person sitting in front of you- I always find entertainment and silently chuckel to myself when looking into someones ear during shul, the icicles of wax may not be everyones thing, but I sure do get a kick out of hairy ears.
Check out whats in the drawers in front of you- some shuls have the drawers for the regulars who like to keep their tallesim, inhalers and secret stashes of herring in the bottom of the benches. Be careful because these drawers were originally designed to be the lazy mans gragger and they make lots of noise for some reason. Also be careful when rummaging through other peoples stuff because the old men who own these shul lockers are usually quick to shout at you in front of everyone.
If the lighting is right, you can practice with your hand shadows. I can do alligators and dogs- but maybe your more advanced in this field and can do those two hand shadow animal manuvers.
Make faces at little kids, always fun, doesn’t even have to be during a speech, although its interesting to see the kid tugging on his fathers jacket to watch the faces this weirdo is making at him.
Pick out the lint and dust from your pockets. If anyone asks why your dumping particles of dust and last years matzo crumbs on the floor during the speech, just tell them you forgot to do tashlich that year.
Similar to the item above, you can clean out your pant-cuffs. You also have the excuse that you do not want to carry anything on shabbos. Who knows you may find some money, I know I have found stray pennies.
If you are in a shul that is angled downward, roll stuff down the hill to see how far it goes. I have been in movie theaters where the ethnic population decided to roll what sounded like 40 oz bottles of Mickeys- down the slope.
Check out the ladies- should have been the first one- but this one is obvious, I don’t need to tell you people to check out the ladies, and if you have one of those barbed wire mechitzas with watchtowers- you are out of luck.
Twirl your pretend peyos. You finally figured out why people grow peyos, its for those long Rebbe speeches. You know you want them, but you also stay true to your Litvishe upbringing and only have the greasy behind the ear kinds- they are great for playing with in shul though, in my days of long hair I would give myself pigtails in shul during the speeches.
Try to pull the kohen hand motions, or at least practice them. I can do one hand, and almost the left one, but not quite- they don’t have long enough speeches in Monsey shuls for practicing my kohen/spock hand signs.
Other obnoxious things you can do, fart and watch peoples reactions, pick your nose (behind a raised up siddur of course), pick your scabs- assur by the way. Pick your toe cheese, crack your knuckles or neck or back, think!
Think of stupid posts like this one.