Monday, September 16, 2013

Getting Ready for Sukkos: Reb Menashe's Shabbos Tish (ר' מנשה לוסטיג'ס שבת טיש)

י"ב לחודש שביעי תשע"ד

Nope. This has absolutely nothing to do with Sukkoth. However, now that we're through the intense part of the Seventh Month/Tishrei/Fall Holiday season, I feel that it is time to start getting into a festive mood for Sukkoth and subsequent Shemini Atzereth/Simhath Torah, by laughing it up a bit.

When I first started watching this video, I wasn't sure if it was some kind of anti-Hassidish parody. But, as I continued to watch, even with my lousy Yiddish, and my love-hate relationship with the language, I started saying to myself, "I've been to that house!"

Not that particular house, of course, but a few very much like it.

I confirmed with a friend of mine in Me'ah She'arim that Reb Menashe is a well-known Hassidishe comic. 

Nu? Who knew?

Even without know a word of Yiddish, I hope that you will appreciate at least one Hassid's ability to laugh at himself, and to have us step into his home and laugh along with him.

The set-up is that it's Shabbath/Friday night, and he's trying to get the show on the road, so to speak, while trying to get his children to pay attention, and coordinate with his wife.

Sound familiar? That's because the same sort of thing happens in every Jewish home. So, even if you have never seen a Hassid, up close and personal, you may want to try and relate to this video on that level.


(Tip Credit: The Kalashnikover Rebbe and Shlein)

Well, now that I think about it, if you did not have any context, nor point of reference, I suppose that you might view Reb Menashe as coming off as mean.

I assure you he is not, much. Dysfunction, yes, mean,, not really. His kids are probably laughing at him, just like I am, and just trying to push his buttons. Meanwhile, "mommy" is probably

But, this all goes to support my point. Dysfunction in families does not discriminate based on religious observance, nor does it stand in the way of our ability to laugh at it, whether that's appropriate or not. We do it out of anxiety, perhaps? Nevertheless, the is no shortage of novels, plays, movies and television shows, comedy, as well as tragedy which revolve around dysfunction in families.

So, if nothing else, this video can remind us all that even though we're all a little or a lotta bit different, we're also a little or a lotta bit the same.

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