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Summer is coming, which means it's time to celebrate. So get your screen ready for another season of Simchas. You have another half a year to show up to your Simchas online. Take advantage of it and do it right.
Some people will be showing up to parks and wedding halls. However, in all cases, you can still celebrate from your living room. Blaming your not wanting to show up to the party, on COVID, is still acceptable.
There are communities out there that are still in the middle of the pandemic, and I am here to help.
The word “simcha” which is used to describe celebrations, actually means happiness. But happiness is hard when you show up to your grandparents’ house and they yell at you to stay away so you don’t kill them. It’s hard to celebrate a Bat Mitzvah when you can’t hug your family. It’s hard to have a wedding when people are trying to figure out how to lift you up on a chair from six feet away.
But we Jews don’t give up so easily. We’ve invented many innovative ways to celebrate virtually such as ZoomMitzvah, ZoomWedding or a ZoomMoyel for the Bris. I am here to help you get the most out of your Zoomcha. Here is how to be a guest at a Zoomcha.
BEING A GUEST AT THE ZOOMCHA
I learned this over the past year.
You should be wearing a jacket, tie and shorts. Zoomchas are celebrated from the waist up. You wasted money on those new fancy colorful socks. You’re fifty years old! Even your teenage son looks foolish with the tight high pants and the zigzag brown, red, yellow, purple, fluorescent green socks.
You can wear a mask if you want to let people know that you care about society more than them.
Tip Your Webcam When You Stand
Be ready for directions you shouldn’t be heeding. The rabbi asked people to stand for the Bar Mitzvah boy to open the ark and nobody angled their screen up. We saw too many plaid shorts. Pajamas too.
Don’t fall for any service cues online. You're at home. You can do what you want. This isn’t Simon Says. You don’t have to follow direction. You never followed directions in shul before, so there is no reason to start now.
Eat the Food in Your House
Another essential component to all Simchas is eating. The kids are there, family is around. It’s time to pull out the pasta you made last week. No Zoomcha is complete without spaghetti and cottage cheese leftovers. While you’re at home, open up the pantry for all to see the deal you found on matzah farfalle.
Dance with a Hand Raise
The Jewish hand raise dance is a crucial centerpiece of all Jewish celebration. You may not be able to touch the other people, but you have your tablet. Lift your device. A laptop works perfectly. They’re making those so light nowadays; you can toss that thing in the air. I don’t suggest to use a desktop. The Mayim BSason dance hand raise is quite hard to complete with the monitor, hard drive tower and electric strip.
Don’t stand or move your feet. Even if you washed the cargo shorts, nobody wants to see your legs again.
Show Your Blank Screen
Do not leave the meeting. There is no reason to be rude and let the Bar Mitzvah boy know you don’t care about him. This isn’t shul. You don’t have to abandon him in the middle of his reading. Hearing a Bar Mitzvah boy read can be very painful. Here, you don't have to listen. Just leave your screen on. I know this means you've left, but they don't know this. You can head to the den, watch TV; they’ll never know you're in another room, having a good time.
Be Sure to Mute Yourself
You’re the ones we hear fighting! The mic picks it up from the kitchen. And yes we agree, your child should throw out the garbage every once in a while. But why do you need to remind him when Chaim is putting the ring on Malkie? I don’t know. I also don’t know why he had to take out the garbage when it was clear that it wasn’t full.
Clean Your House
We all see it. It's disgusting. You should take out the garbage. At least clean the room. We see it.
And don't pick a room that needs a paint job. I have had to leave many a Zoomcha to make private calls to friends who need renovations and some decent feng shui.
Let’s keep Online Zoomchas after social distancing is over. It's the only way we can be there and get our errands done at the same time.
I'm also a fan of Zoomchim. I don't want to visit family for holidays either. The Chagim at the house, are fine. I can make my own brisket. I don't want to have to hear Uncle Bernie chewing.
I'm going to ride this Zoomcha wave as long as I can. I don't want to have to buy gifts or show up to parties. To note: If I don't get food, they don't get a gift. That's my policy.
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The Falafel of Etan
Israelis are very possessive of their falafel. Even when they have a shop, they don't like to share it… That's Etan. Standing over them while they eat. Making sure they don't run away with his falafel.