Thursday, February 04, 2010

Areivim zeh la-zeh?

I vividly remember the opening scene in Potok's "The Promise". A couple of Orthodox kids from New York wind up at this carnival in a small town. They walk up to a booth start to feel uncomfortable until they discover that the guy who runs the booth speaks Yiddish, is a fellow Jew. All of a sudden they feel all their stress go away. They feel like everything will be fine - until the Jew cheats them at the game.

I always wondered about how things like this work in real life. Have I ever gotten a better deal when dealing with fellow Jews? Have I been taken care of better? I don't know... I don't think so...

I think there is definitely the case, especially in the frum community, where people "take care" of one another because they know each other. But in the situation where I don't know the person, but somehow it becomes known that both of us are Jewish, will I be at an advantage - I don't think so...


Blogger The back of the hill said...

Not so much a chezkas kashrus about the other person's ethics and honesty, as a measure of behavioural predictability - albeit with a huge spectrum.

When I speak Cantonese in C'town, I cease being the unpredictable and irrational foreigner, and become someone who clearly knows that proper way of behaving. Yes, still white - but far less so. Sometimes the whity-whitety becomes unnoticeable.

February 04, 2010 1:52 PM  
Blogger e-kvetcher said...

>When I speak Cantonese in C'town, I cease being the unpredictable and irrational foreigner

And when you causually drop phrases like "chezkas kashrus"? :)

February 05, 2010 12:46 PM  
Blogger The back of the hill said...

Well, I did mention a 'huge spectrum', did I not?

And to add to that: davka, mamesh, and zach.

Hee hee hee.

February 07, 2010 4:17 PM  

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