Wednesday, July 27, 2005

In case you wondered

For those of you out there, and we know there are plenty, who think that a certain group in Williamburg represents the continuity of Chabad take a look at this dude. He's the son of Big Chief Weberman of the Malochim tribe in Williamsburg. This is what becomes of those who have no Mesorah in Chabad and read the Seforim on their own. The picture was taken at a counter-rally at the Salute to Israel parade or maybe a rally in support of "Palestine". Makes a pretty picture, no?

(Hey, it's been like a month already since we've spoken about these clowns)

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Not this time

Usually when tradegy strikes within the Chassidic-Charedi community the first to feel the pressure are the women. They're told that they are to blame for all that goes wrong. The Rambam says that that if one the group passes away all בני החבורה need to be מפשפש במעשים but we know better. After all, our knees and elbows are covered and we don't wear neither long sheitlach nor tight-fitting clothes. (The Yeshivish types, to their credit are less apt to limit the blame to women).

Was I surprised that after the latest round of "premature deaths" at least within the forum and blog communities there had been no such talk! The questions abound and the answer and many and diverse, but the blame is not there.

Is it the fact that people realize that women can't always be to blame, or am I just taking a sample of the wrong segment of society? Do the masses still blame knees and elbows?

Monday, July 18, 2005

Here to stay

Anonymous asked if I'm done with blogging, heaven forbid! with the job change I have not yet gotten used to the new schedule, hence the lack of concentration necessary in kepping those new posts coming. I will try to post more frequently, but I find that keeping hot topics at the forefront works wonders for the counter! :)

Thursday, July 14, 2005

The Rat Race

As many of you know I have recently started a new job within my original profession. It involves getting up early every day, davening early, and rushing off to work, something I was not used to doing. I am not a what you call a sheltered person but I'm shocked at what I see, seemingly the whole world has gone crazy.

For those people, myself somewhat included, doing the 9-5 city thing doesn't sound like that big of a deal, even if it is in "Corporate America". You're a settled guy whose not easily swayed or tempted, so you've got nothing to worry about, right?

But what about those sheltered young men who rarely if ever stepped out of their communities, maybe to travel to the Catskills or to Monsey was their only trip out of town, do we not think that their education is losing its luster? Does he stand a chance in his heavy Levush in the summertime?

I'm obviously not saying that Chassidishe Yungeleit are leaving the fold in droves, it's what inside that doesn't tell the whole story. Is the culture shock (for lack of a better term) really necessary, or should the education process somehow include relating to the real world in an Halachically permissible way? Is the Chassidic community correct in sheltering their members so strongly from any outside influence, so much so that a Yungerman can't conjure a sentence in English without losing his teeth, let alone deal with non-religious or even religious non-Chassidic people?

Thursday, July 7, 2005

Today's needs

Poster N writes in regards to why we need vacations these days:

(excue the lack of grammar)

material standards and 'needs' have gone up. but never mind that, big topic for now...

Consider even a non material type family...the dynamics of life are simply pressured.
A tiny example: send kids off in the morning to yeshiva. a mother has to pick out clothes, get a kid(s) dressed, fed, knapsack in order, homework signed off, make sure that she is dressed appropriately, run down from the 3rd or 4th floor maybe no elevator, leave screaming toddlers alone while she takes other kids to the bus.

She may have to wait twenty minutes worrying about welfare of baby/toddlers upstairs out of site.. maybe leave a three year old on the sidewalk while crossing the street to load the five year old meanwhile apprehensive about the three year old staying put on the sidewalk instead of following her into the street...etc. the possible tension of a simple non event takes its toll and can be expounded upon with no embellishment....

What were the old days? leaving the house for cheder didn't necessarily mean feeding anybody (who had food), getting dressed (you slept in the same set of clothes that you wore all week), signing off homework or assembling a knapsack( paper was a real commodity and no one brought a breifcase to cheder), and walking out the front door to cheder alone without mommy or a bus. Cheder was in the neighborhood and it was a given that a five year old walks there by himself..pretty relaxing for the mommy compared to today....etc, etc...
עד כאן לשונו הטהור

However, to their credit, people worked a lot harder in those days, and had the local Goyim to worry about besides for Parnosoh. So, I would tend to disagree.

Tuesday, July 5, 2005

היכי דמי חילול השם

We did what many others do. We packed the kids into the car and headed to Wal*Mart in Monticello. When we got there it was like walking into Boro Park/Williamsburg, full of Yiddelach, clogging up the aisles, doing what they do best. It's times like these that make you want to bury your head in shame.

Let me preface this by saying that I do look like all other Charedim/Chassidishe. White shirt, dark pants, beard and peyos, but for some reason I do know how to behave around non-Jews, it's something I've been careful about my whole life. Most "Frummies" however, have NO IDEA how to act, which basically means that it's no better in their own neighborhoods, but there people are used to it. I'm talking about clogging up the aisles, bumping into other people without excusing themselves, cutting into checkout lines, etc.

I was standing in one line and this young man is ahead of me, behind me is a local Yokel who's getting very impatient that the line isn't moving because the young girl at the register has never seen so many people buying so much stuff. All of a sudden this yungerman's wife pulls in with another full cart and positions herself behind him. The local guy sees all these Jews ahead of him and says "HOW MANY CARTS ARE GONNA CUT INTO THIS LINE, THIS IS BEGINNING TO BE FELONIOUS!,"I THINK I'LL GO TO THE PALESTINIAN LINE!".

I do understand that the locals are ingrates who owe their existence to the summer vacationers, but you don't have to flaunt it. People come in to these stores dressed to kill, as if they're going to some kind of function, while the locals can't afford a pair of pants.

Another example: we were standing in line with a bunch of kids and a wagon full of stuff. Next to us in the adjacent line stood a man from BP/Williamsburg in his 40's holding 2 items. After 10 minutes in line the cashier says she's closing the line. The man goes ballistic, he says to his wife איך שטיי שוין דא א האלבע שעה! Then he runs up to the cashier and loudly tells her "I'm oreddy heer 45 minits, u cent close di lein!". The poor girl may have been there for 10 hours earning minimum wage, and maybe she wanted to go home to her kids, but this guy can't be bothered to go to another line with his 2 items and let's everybody know about it.

It's sickening to watch.