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We have the traditional signs in Hebrew, known as Simanim, to say how our enemies should die through violent vegetation. What about Simanim for the English speaker? Here are fruit and vegetables and some creative curses in English, that I came up with, to make your Rosh Hashana more meaningful (I will try to rhyme, as rhyming is important for warding off evil):
Curses with Fruit & Vegetables
Aubergine- ‘Like a carrot not dressed, may all their eggplants be undressed, with no tahina or bean. Just a plain eggplant, with no identity, confused like aubergine. And dead.’ Death truly adds to this Siman.
Bananas- ‘May our enemies slip on the ground, like a banana that’s been split. And then be scattered, because they split.’ I feel that using the banana split line makes for a good substitute for a rhyme, and it is scary.
Broccoli- ‘May they be broken like broccoli, and have their stem separated from the rest of their tiny tree. And not to be able to mix with any vegetables because they are awesome by themselves.’ I like broccoli too much. Maybe if my enemies knew that, they wouldn’t be enemies.
Brussel Sprouts- ‘May our enemies sprout like a brussel and never turn into a cabbage. But very tasty. Tasty and dead.’
Cantaloupe- ‘May all evil wonder, and not know whether or not they are a deer, like an antelope, when I am eating my cantaloupe. Confused. Not knowing if they're a melon or not. Because it's not in the name.'
Celery- ‘May all evil get stuck with parents who give their kids peanut butter on celery, instead of candy. Not enjoying their snacks.’ This can cause great sadness to our enemies.
Corn- ‘May their hearts be torn, like when I rip into a corn.’ That sounds too much like a spell.
Eggplant- ‘May all enemies be confused like a plant that is called an egg. Thinking that they came from a chicken.’
Fennel- ‘May our enemies die like a dog in a kennel, that was forced to eat fennel, because their owners didn’t care about them.’ I feel bad for that dog.
Kiwi- ‘May all our enemies end up in New Zealand, because there aren’t that many Jews there, and it makes for decent cinematography. Like tasty kiwi, may we still be able to slaughter animals, ritually.’ Sometime our political enemies have to hear our plight. Not just the enemies in shul, who take my seat on Rosh Hashana. Who should die a starfruit death.
Leaves- ‘May our enemies make like trees and leaves.’
Lagenaria- ‘May all evil catch lagenaria, and if that is not a disease, then malaria.’ You can also use, 'May our enemies be cursed with not getting lasagna for dinner, as they were hoping. And end up eating lagenaria.' That's a very strong curse.
Lemons- ‘May life give them lemons.’ That is a curse for people who don’t know how to make lemonade. Sour people.
Naartjie- ‘May our enemies be stuck with oranges for a high fee, like a naartjie. And mandarin themselves in the eyes, and then…’ Got carried away with that South African fruit name.
Orange- Pulling together the trilogy of citrus… ‘May all evil have to listen to jokes about bananas that end with “orange you glad, I didn’t say banana,” with a life full of little kids that can’t tell jokes. Knocking on your door all day, with knock knock jokes, stuck in your mind like a foot in the door hinge, while you're glad you’re not an orange. Who’s there? Orange you glad it’s me?’ Don’t tell this curse to the little ones. It will hurt them too much.
Parsley- ‘May our enemies be stuck with no basil or oil for pesto, and no rosemary. A whole year of Passover, with just salt water and parsley (stuck in the teeth).'
Pear- ‘May our enemies not dare to stare at a pear. Because they are tasty apples, and that would not be fair.’ Ahhhh!!!! Bring it on. The curses are rolling off my tongue. As are the rhymes. 'May our enemies have to listen to rhymes.'
Pickles- 'May they die the slow death of a cucumber that's been pickled. And then have their eyes stung by the juice. Pickled eyes.' This is a horrific curse. You must really hate the enemy to use this one.
Pomegranate- 'May our enemies get hit with a palm that is made of granite.' A palm made of granite would hurt. Brilliance. I know.
Tomato- 'May our enemies be crushed like a tomato, and used for jachnun.'
Please note, I kept this in alphabetical order, so that you can reference it.
I hope I am not scaring you, and that this is educational. I just wish I had a greater knowledge of the plantae kingdom and fungi family. My knowledge of monocots is so limited.
Other foods were pulled out over the course of dinner last year, which were not vegetables. Yet, they did not have a curse for it. It was the first course, and they just wanted to eat it. They pulled out fish, and made the blessing, ‘We should all be for a head, and not for a tail.’ The fish fit the Siman perfectly. I like heads and I loved it because that sign was Gummy Fish. Not everybody likes fish, but everybody likes gummies. So, don’t be afraid to use candy to curse out your enemies. ‘May our enemies have bad teeth like one who chews on their lollypop.'
If you're stuck with an apple and honey, you can use, 'May our enemies die like an apple that's stuck in honey, and can't get out.'
I feel like I am scaring the children right now.
Next year, I will try to give you some blessings. But for now, let's focus on cursing our enemies.
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I was going to do Kaparos before Yom Kippur, but I chickened out.
You get it? Kaparos is the tradition of placing your sins on something else, the day before Yom Kippur, traditionally a chicken, and waiving it. He chickened out of the chicken. He might've done it with money in the end. But that would still be without a chicken.
Designated stroller parking area. Something every shul needs, so I can get through the entrance on Yom Kippur... Truth is they should have stroller parking all the time. The entrance is always blocked.
Problem: Merv and Bernie will end up parking there. They already take the disabled parking spots and walk just fine. When it comes to parking, every member of our congregation is disabled.
Side Note: Figured out why so many kids come to shul on Yom Kippur. Because they get to eat in shul on Yom Kippur.