21 necessary evils of the frum community

They say that government and taxes are two necessary evils whether we like it or not. The frum community also has a lot of necessary evils and I just wanted to touch upon a few of them today. I’m sure some of you may think that certain things are necessary evils, but things like shabbos toilet paper is not necessary and pre-checked vegetables are just plain evil. 

  1. Motzoi Shabbos Pizza: Every time I go to New York, I end up eating pizza on motzoi shabbos. It’s one of the facts of life, despite the fact that NY has so much going on, I end up doing nothing but eating pizza and watching all the frummies doing exactly what I’m doing.
  2. Kids saying Ma Nishtana: I absolutely hate it when every kid at the table has to say ma nishtana, but it has to happen because this is one of the ways in which parents gauge the value of the education their children at getting at the local chabad preschool. Can they do it in 3 languages with a nice enough tune with enough bravado so all the adults can actually listen without singing along in hushed voices? Or do the adults have to push the shy child to get one phrase out in Hebrew?
  3. Early Shabbos: If not for kids, we wouldn’t have early shabbos, thank God the shul in San Francisco decided to push it back from the minhag yisroel of 7pm to middle at 7:30. The only folks who do a normal shabbos start time in the Bay are chabad, God bless em.
  4. Crusty Washing cups: How exactly is one supposed to clean a washing cup that’s chained to a metal sink without any soap in site? Washing cups are all about spiritual cleanliness? Ruach ra’ah is not visible, accept on the hands of meshulachim. Did you know that there used to be a facebook event called “national clean your washing cup day” or something of the sort.
  5. Egg Kichel: Surprisingly there are enough people born before 1935 still alive that have fond memories of Egg Kichel to keep the business alive. So until everyone over 80 dies off, we will still have to see this terrible invention at select kiddushim.
  6. Frum Magazines: Heck, I even read them for the ads and shidduch crisis solution articles, how else would frum women keep up their Yinglish skills if they moved out of town. There is also a hint, maybe more than a hint of propaganda and indoctrination inlaid within the pages of Ami and Mishpacha.
  7. Pre-pubescent boys choirs: Men fiend the high voice of a woman so badly that instead of risking arousal by a female voice, they risk arousal by a little boys voice. I’m not sure which one is better, I guess there is no problem halachically with becoming aroused by little boys voices. Ethically, it’s a problem because it looks really pedo-homo-erotic.
  8. Shabbos Robes: Yes, they are damned ugly, but the comfort level of going without bra, panties and stockings is unsurpassed. If I were a woman, I’d be wearing that darned thing all day (only after I was married, because dudes in general don’t like shabbos robes)
  9. Snoods: If you had to cover your hair all the time, wouldn’t it be more comfy to throw it in a windsock. Yes, they are ugly and scare away any wife swapping opportunities, but there’s a general rule that women who wear snoods do not wife swap.
  10. Bimeh Madlikin: I have never said it in my life, but it’s a great time to go to the bathroom, look over the mechitza and do any talking that you need to do before maariv.
  11. Tehillim Lists: Nothing like being part of a massive campaign to heal some peeps, so what if 99% of the time you ignore them when they show up unwanted in your inbox.
  12. Denial: How else could orthodox Judaism flourish through logic, reason, rationality, science and cheeseburgers.
  13. Black Hats: Like it or not, it’s still the determinate factor of frumkeit. If you don’t wear a black hat you just aren’t that frum. We have tried to get away from it, but it shall always be like that, unless rabbits become an endangered species.
  14. Shtetl Fiction: I think that by now most people realize that not everyone in the alter heim was a genius wagon wheel repairman that knew all of shas by age 10, but the stories of the gedolim in all those artscroll hagiographies are pretty darned good. How else do you expect people to become frum, reading inspiring stories is one of the best ways, even though it’s all fiction.
  15. Telz Charoses: When I was a kid, the only packages we ever got in the mail were from Telse Yeshiva, we got charoses and the bedikas chometz kit and we got wicks for chanukah. Sure, the choroses is made in China and actually looks like Egyptian cement, but I’m sure many a secular Jew were touched enough to marry within the fold due to such generosity from such a fine institution.
  16. Mezonos Bread: I feel it’s an unfair loophole to create bread made with juice so that lazydox Jews can skirt the requirement to thank God for our sustenance in benching, but it’s actually kind of cool that frummies hold by such things.
  17. Shabbos Toothpaste: I remember the days when no one brushed their teeth on shabbos and no one thought to complain about it, if you were frum you knew that Hashem couldn’t care less if your breath was stinky. All Hashem cared about was bleeding gums and bubbles. Then some modernishe people frummed out and couldn’t take 24 hours with brushing their teeth and they caused for such terrible things as the shabbos toothbrush and shabbos toothpaste.
  18. Shaloshudos: AKA suedat shlishit: As if anyone who has just spent all of shabbos eating is hungry for more. Shaloshudos is commonly known as the most depressing meal of the week, shabbos is almost over and to commemorate this sad event, the rejects and nebishy guys of the shul get together to eat soggy leftovers, flat seltzer and sing the same tired songs every week. But, apparently it’s a very important meal and elevated in some kabbalistic works to the point of such highs that you are required to eat matza and ice cream scoop shaped tuna salad in honor of this auspicious time.
  19. Kiruv: To be honest with you, I hate kiruv, it’s ruined the frum community. It makes us FFB’s look bad when you have people who’ve only just got into Judaism and they know more than you, but there are a lot of reasons to like Kiruv. Frum Hip-Hop never would have happened without kiruv. We never would have had scantily clad chabad girls running around and we never would have had good food, because frummies would have been content with kishke and gravy for lunch instead of salad bars and sushi.
  20. Chabad: Yeh, yeh, I know you hate them for some abstract reason like their beliefs which don’t jive with yours, but how else are you going to get kosher food in Tailand? How else are thousands of college kids going to find real Judaism at the University of Georgia or Colorado? How else would there have ever been something called the luxury mikvah?
  21. Chumras: A lot of people think chumras are a new thing, but there have been chumras for thousands of years. In my chosson class I just learned of the Ohr Zarua, possibly the worst chumra in the world for those familiar. Chumras are necessary to all the zealots to be more zealous. There’s no better feeling than knowing you are frummer than your neighbor and it’s actually a good taiyva to have.
  22. Having these darned 4torah.com ads on the bottom of every post.