Ah, Israel, the land of Jewish athleticism, Jewish militarism, Jews doing things other than (ahem) staying inside all day in somewhere like, say, Brooklyn, reading scholarly texts and checking their email. Looks like the Zionists are not content bringing Jewry of Muscle to the Holy Land: I was just invited to an event, via facebook, called JUMP FOR ISRAEL!

Jump for Israel: SKYDIVING!! – Come skydiving to raise money for Friends of the IDF, an organization dedicated to supporting Israeli soldiers. We’ll be paying a great discounted price of $165.

In addition, we’re asking that each participant raise $100 in pledges as a donation to Friends of the IDF.

The jump will take place on Long Island–we’ll provide transportation. To look up the place visit, www.skydivelongisland.com.

Email Rob (rms313@nyu.edu) or Dave (djs326@nyu.edu) to reserve your spot and receive a pledge sheet.

HURRY! Space is limited!

The words “discounted price” and “Long Island” do appear, so stereotypes are not entirely absent, but still. Is this what the Jewish people has come to?

Cross-posted at WWPD.

Latest posts by phoebe (see all)

About the author

phoebe

22 Comments

  • Was it Shami or Hillel who said pull the string before your wash your hands and then say the bruacha for being mishuguna?

  • this is my first look at this blog/website whatever you want to call it. Phoebe, promoting jumping out a plane for a cause does seem like an extremely desperate attempt to connect to Israel and Judiasm. But why must everything be so serious? The idea that every Jew has/had to be versed in talmud, etc. is a survival mechanism more than it is affinity for the talmud. I fully support Jewish education, but, perhaps we have to face reality that most Jews, who now have the choice as never before, just want to be normal people and that things like Birthright and perhaps jumping out of airplanes may be the only way for Jews in the diaspora to experience a sense of normalcy and less intense relationship to every talmudic minutiae of Judiasm. It wouldn’t be so bad if Jews were a bit more of a happy more comfortable people, rather than the oppressed and/or depressed outsider.

  • If you Zionists are going to be jumping out of airplanes ‘n shit to demonstrate your Jewishness, may I suggest wearing western Diaspora footwear instead of sandals.

  • I’ll tell you what. Somehow, Soviet Judaism survived for thousands of years without any religion, and it sure wasn’t because of our connection to the Talmud. For some, maybe, for most, it was a connection to Jewishness and the closest thing to that for most Jews is Israel, as a place and as an idea. My father’s Bar Mitzvah consisted of his father telling him, “Today, you are a man!”. My father can’t read Hebrew, was circumcised in his forties, and doesn’t believe in g-d, but a more steadfast and proud Jew, I defy you to find.

  • jesus,

    This post was intended to be humorous. I have no feeling either way about skydiving for talmud, but if Hasids wanted to skydive, this would be odd and thus amusing. That said, the point of this post, which I’d thought was obvious, was that Zionism, which in creating Israel sought the entirely just and reasonable goal of letting the Jewish nation be a normal one, parodies itself in an event of such stereotypically non-Jewish machismo.

  • Whoa!!!!!!!

    I was laughing until now. “Stereotypically non-Jewish machismo?!”

    Why is this reserved for non-Jews? Jews don’t fight in wars? They don’t join the military? They don’t parachute? Holy cow, do you know how many superb soldiers Israel turns out, among them many who parachute?

  • themiddle, I said “stereotypically.” There wouldn’t be Israeli soldiers–or Israel–had Jews not decided to counter this stereotype; there wouldn’t be Woody Allen, etc., if the stereotype didn’t still exist.

  • Phoebe- You seem to have a very easy time stereotyping jews. Woody Allen is a severly depressed, nerotic pscycological basket case, as is Seinfeld and the like, and they are on camera because they are amusing, not typical or normal. Israel was created out of neccessity, out of a need to survive and the will of the people live as free Jews, not oppressed by their neighbors, not because they didn’t want to be like Woody Allen

  • “Soviet Judaism” (whatever the hell that is) couldn’t possibly have survived for “thousands of years” since the Soviet Union only survived for, like, about 70 years (last I hear, anyway).

    Just sayin’.

    And prior to those 70 years, “Soviet” Jews studied Talmud probably more or less like other Jews everywhere else.

    It is true that many Soviet Jews I have met identify very strongly as Jews without knowing anything much about Jewishness from a religious perspective. They also hate Russians like poison. Getting the shit kicked out of you by Cossacks will do that.

  • israel is a safe charity that most jews would be happy to donate to — unless you are neturai karte. if zionism/israel wasn’t around, it would be called jump for bagels.

    hell if it takes jumping to get jews together, go for it. lo lishma – if it was called threshing wheat for television i dont think gd would give a damn if it keeps jews together – one of the goals of many halachas, imo.

  • Modern political Zionism is from the 1880s-90s, and I have yet to see evidence otherwise, but that’s beside the point. This post was intended to be a comment on how (modern, political) Zionism–Nordau in particular– sought to create “new Jews,” and how it’s thus amusing that an event promoting those “new Jews” (i.e. supporting the IDF) involves an activity that’s about the opposite of stereotypically Diaspora-Jewish. Apparently the point did not come across, because now everyone’s arguing about Talmud.

    Furthermore, can we agree once and for all that if I say that X is a stereotype, it does not mean that I believe X to be true, but rather that it’s a commonly-believed idea, perhaps based on truth, that can be easily contradicted with real-life cases. That is the meaning of “stereotype.” I for one have no idea if Jews are over- or under-represented among those who would jump out of airplanes, but count me out.

  • Phoebe, if we agree with you about anything, we won’t be debating. And then what? We’re nothing without friction… 😉

    By the way, both you and R. Yonah are right about Zionism and there’s no contradiction there.

  • this web site is funny and you all have a lot of passion for what you are saying, but I hope you understand that all this psuedo intellectual gab doesn’t sit well with the common Jew who you are all so afraid of losing. I’m not sure what the purpose of this web site is, but if any of you ever intend to, in fact, do anything positive for the jewish community you should get off your high horses and come back down to earth and relate to the common middle class jew who is fleeing the community in droves. If it takes sky diving, beer pong, sports games, or whatever to get them to relate to Israel and Judiasm you may want think seriously about whether judiasm and the jewish people is important to you or is this web site just an exercise of your own ego and insecurities.

  • Very interesting comment thread indeed. Some thoughts.

    1.) It seems obvious to me now, but Phoebe’s shorter answers seem to be the most accurate. Eventually this is what saves you as an academic, BTW.

    2.) I agree with TM on zionism.

    3.) Yes, eventually ‘everyone’s arguing about Talmud’. It’s what the Jews do for entertainment.

    4.) I’m glad someone else caught this whopper: ““Soviet Judaism” (whatever the hell that is) couldn’t possibly have survived for “thousands of years” since the Soviet Union only survived for, like, about 70 years (last I hear, anyway).” What Ephraim neglected to mention was that neither Russia nor Moscovy has existed for ‘1000’s of years. Neither did the Orthodox Church.

    5.) I leave the ‘macho’ crap for another day.

    Cheers, ‘VJ’

  • OK would you believe a really old macho jew?
    [http://blog.wired.com/defense/2007/04/herbew_hercules.html]

    Yes, the Hebrew Hercules was also almost a Canadian! [http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Wrestling/2007/03/28/3860797.html]
    Cheers, ‘VJ’

Leave a Comment