Thursday, October 16, 2008

Yes, Succot is a Real Holiday


Robert, of Seraphic Secret, has a great piece of dialogue about Succot:

I was asked to attend a script conference tomorrow, Tuesday morning. I told the producer that it was a Jewish holiday and I couldn't attend.
“Wait, the holidays are over, your Yom Kee-pur just ended, right?”
“Uh, yeah, but now we have Succot, Shemini Atzeret and then Simchat Torah.”
“No disrespect, but you are kidding, tell me you're kidding.”
“Sorry.”
“Let me get back to you.”
An hour later the producer, not Jewish, truly bright, creative and decent, calls back.
“I asked all the Jews in the company and they're drawing a blank.”
“Right. Well, I'm not surprised. Look, lemme send you a few links and then get back to me.”
“Hey, I believe you. Just tell me when we can have our sit-down?”
I suggest a day and time.
“Robert?”
“Yeah?”
“I respect your commitment. I really do. But tell me, how come none of the Jews in the company know what I'm talking about?”


It brings me back to the days when I didn't really know about the holiday. In OJC Hebrew School, they took us to see the funny hut decorated with hanging fruit, and I think I visited the rabbi's home with my aunt who was their friend, but it wasn't a holiday we actually celebrated.
We didn't celebrate Simchat Torah either.
In New York City, at least in my school district in Bayside, the schools were closed for Rosh Hashannah and Yom Kippur, but after that it was business as usual, except in Hebrew School. But since it was the beginning of the school year, it didn't feel like a school vacation.
Shavuot from my childhood is a total blank. We must have learned something about it, but I don't remember anything, not even cheesecake. At least for Purim I have vague memories of hamantashen and a grogger. No, I don't remember hearing the Megillah. And no mishloach manot either.
At least in Israel, even for the non-religious, the Jewish Calendar is the calendar of the country.
Succot are all over. My kids put up ours.
They even hung a picture of their favorite rabbi, "HaRav Tzimmerman."


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