It’s day 3 after my return to the Old World, and I still haven’t found satisfactory answers to questions that arose during my umpteenth trip to NYC (lost count after my fifteenth trip there several years ago). I’m aware those questions may well portray stereotypes rather than whatnot, but either I was überstereotype-sensitive or I simply faced more cliché-characters than usually.

1. Why do American women wear jersey hotpants during travel, regardless of the state of their celulitis, varicosities and the fact that it’s usually comparatively cool on planes?
2. Where do all those short, fake beach-blonde 18+ year-olds with padded bras and otherwise boyish features come from? Where do they go? They are on the planes, but apart from two ones, I’ve never seen them in NYC. Are they those legendary sky marshalls, travelling incognito? Do they turn into 6’2″, buff, uniformed chaps after landing?
3. Why do Chasidim always seem to put on an upset face when they appear in public places? (I know enough Chasidim well-enough to know that in private they hardly ever look upset.) Are they trying to reach the tzniusdik hemlines with their jaws?
4. Why do people wear toe-post slippers if they can’t walk in them and just resort to shuffling? It’s not good for the feet afterall.
5. Why do Americans chew gum with their mouth open?
6. Did Chasidishe business travellers gladly eat treyf on the plane (and obviously enjoying it at that; kosher options were available afterall), because their wives / mothers weren’t around?
7. Do hipsters get discounts on their spectacle frame purchase if they can convince twenty more hipsters to get the same kind of spectacle frame? Or have opticians been sworn in by the government to only sell one kind of spectacle frame to hipsters so that in case of a nation-wide emergency the National Guards will know who they should save [first and who not]?
8. Why do people that want donations / spare change from me expect any luck if they’re yelling? (As far as I’m concerned, I consider yelling a pretty irrational way of arguing one’s point, so I don’t respond to people that yell as a rule as their yelling makes it clear they aren’t interested in hearing, thus exchanging, different ideas but are only attempting to silence those that don’t agree with them.)
9. Why is it so easy to tell American visitors to museums apart from European ones?
10. Why do Americans smile so little at service staff? I smile a lot, and this time it even earned me getting away with 24 lbs of exccess luggage for free while others were made to re-pack their stuff.
And finally: 11. Why would some guy with tattoo sleeves (yuck!) ask me to go out with him? I try to look as average over there as I can, no visible body jewellery etc.

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froylein

48 Comments

  • “Why do American women wear jersey hotpants during travel, regardless of the state of their celulitis”

    Because they have no sense of style whatsoever. Montréal is flooded with them, especially when the currency exchange works to their favour. The only advantage is that they eat a lot, and therefore pump much-needed dough into the economy.

    As for Americans not smiling enough, don’t complain. We have a whole province in Canada called Ontario where smiling is an indictable crime.

  • “Why do American women wear jersey hotpants during travel, regardless of the state of their celulitis”

    Ha, I’d revoke their right… except then what shorts would the leathery skinned old chiloni ladies wear everyday in Tel Aviv? I image that they’d switch to short skirts; which is one giant step BACK for man

  • Nizo, I really found it astounding how much petite old women could put away until I noticed the large selection of over-the-counter laxatives at drugstores and that many women of mature age buy them. Apparently there’s a type of aged ladies exercising a kind of bulimia which puts them at the risk of organ failure and colon cancer.

    Lynn, bingo. But I at least put sort of a disclaimer into the preface.

    NafNaf, I suspect they could wear what European women with similar problems would wear, i.a. some light, floaty but more concealing cut. I’m aware celulitis is innate (it doesn’t run in my family, so I’m lucky there), and there’s not much that really can be done about it, but one can also be considerate of other people’s delicate feelings. I wouldn’t wear anything in public that reveals certain scars I’ve got, no matter whether I personally feel ok with them.

  • The problem is awareness… I think most of those women don’t realize that the day that they could pull off daisy-dukes passed them by when Night Rider was prime time tv.
    There must be something in the water in europe…
    And just so my posts aren’t misogynistic:
    wearing “shmediums” (read: what every model for american apparel wears) isn’t a right, it’s a privilege. If you can’t see your toes over your I-used-to-be-hot-in-the-army beer gut, then you probably should be in a large.

  • In (2), froylein makes the entirely understandable mistake of thinking that NYC constitutes a representative sample of the US population as a whole. There are plenty such bottled blondes over in Nassau County. Or just take the PATH train to Hoboken on your next trip in. The look you describe is de rigeur in the suburbs.

    Ditto re (8). Everyone needs a little asperity to survive in New Jack City.

    As to (11), froylein is clearly irresistable.

  • Rule-of-thumb: hotpants and white wedding dresses are for females below age 23. After that, either easily loses all credibility apart from a few exceptions.

    Tom, you’re too kind.

  • Froylein,
    Your lack of patriotic spirit is not really appreciated all that much right now. We are having a hard enough time with the anniversary of 9/11 coming up; our Soldiers dying to try to bring stability to the Middle East or whatever other alleged reason they are there; and, with certain politicians thinking Spanish is the official language of our nation.
    Print a top of 11 of your Country’s little tasteless habits so we can have a laugh at your expense and then we can all feel better…

    Oh, and you should’ve brought Grandma a copy of Dr. Ruth’s book “Sex After 50″… she is the ULTIMATE New Yorker!

  • Chutzpah, Dr. Ruth moved back to Germany a while ago. 😉

    As long as JAPs will consider military guys below their class just based on their salary (though the latter likely might possess the better school degree as in earned, not what daddy could afford), will there ever be true US patriotism among the tribe?

  • This JAP has blogged extensively (before you came aboard) about her support for the Troops and a particular Jewish Soldier who is currently in Afganistan or Iraq who she misses very, very much and anxiously awaits his return so he can resume taking her orders, but yeah, at 14 years younger and with no Ivy degree, he is really not ” life partner” material.

    However, a Jewish boyfriend of mine from college went to Cornell on a full ROTC scholarship and entered the military as an Officer as a Lawyer for the Pentagon. He retired as a Captain and is now a senior partner in top law firm. Hot, hot, hot! Did I cry for weeks when he moved onto the some shiksa in my sorority.

    Still waiting for your list of Germany’s tasteless habits because everything I know about Germans I learned from The Big Lebowski and The Diary of Anne Frank.

    Members of the Tribe put their allegiance to the Torah first and the land they live in second. That’s why most lands they have lived wanted them to move the hell out. Can you really blame them?

  • Chutzpah, your historical analysis is about as good as your current love life. It wasn’t the “torah first” consideration that prompted the eviction of Jews from different states. Just ask, you know, those Reform Jews of the Enlightenment whether their experiment led to any significant changes in their respective societies. One word: Dreyfus.

  • The bottom line is historically and throughout the Torah, very few have wanted us in their land. Ya think we should start taking at least one percent of the responsibility for that? Everything about our religion centers around how someone was trying to kill us , conver us or evict us. I know the Aish talking point on that is that the other nations were just always jealous of our special choseness, but maybe, just maybe, we can start to take a little of the blame. Hey, I even take .05% of the blame for my divorce.

  • Actually no, Chutzpah, we can’t start to accept a little of the blame of the Jews being evicted. That little story which accuses Jews of deicide has held European and other Christians in thrall for a couple of thousand years. That’s the secret sauce behind these evictions and goes to explain why they happened in so many different countries. Had the Jews represented some sort of physical threat to these nations, there would be something to discuss here, but they weren’t even proselytizing much less raising arms.

  • chutzpah, we’re now deploying the most insidious, lethal weapon of all: we want to date you.

  • ok…to tell you the truth, I didn’t think I deserved the .05% even after 5 years of therapy.

    All the wars with enemies in Torah that Abrahma, Issac and Jacob ran into …they had absolutely no reason to have conflicts with them either? The Jewish people have always been 100% correct and justified in all their actions as a nation since Moses took us out of Egypt. That’s the party line and I’m sticking to it.

    And by the way, how dare the goyim make us take off our sheitels when they arrest us for welfare fraud…we are such good citizens! Why would they want us leave?

  • Well, strictly speaking in terms of religion, there are many people among the ultra-Orthodox that consider not only the Holocaust but all other instances of persecution and discrimination to have been caused by the gap between choseness and the failure to perform the mitzvot. From a secular and historical point of view, that’s utter shtuss, even if the non-sectarian tendencies of Judaism and foreign rites in pre-dominantly non-Jewish environments do come up as strawman reasons / excuses for Jewish suffering (and as EV, I think, once pointed out somewhere as a huge “argument” in begging letters by kiruv orgs). The US though, as people on here have repeatedly assured me in disagreement with my stance that Puritanism and Evangelicalism outdo all other religious affiliations in regards to overall mindset and have immensely even affected Judaism, supposedly offers different options than pre-Enlightment and between World Wars1 &2-Europe, so I suppose patriotism need not necessarily clash with religious observance and / or depth of personal faith.

    Chutzpah, I’ll do the list, just for you. But please bear with me as I’m back to work after my break and have got things to take care of. Oh, and get a boytoy if it pleases your palate. In these days and age, strong women may not always find a partner that’s academically, intellectually or financially equal. But more and more men know how to cook. Blame that on emancipation.

  • chutzpah, cherchez that boytoy. But whatever you do, don’t make John Edwards’s mistake. Redundant systems, is my advice…. Redundant systems.

  • my boytoy is fighting the war against terror…should I go stand outside the National Guard Recruiting Office to find a new one?

  • You’ll just have to be patient, but only til January, when President Obama will immediately bring ’em all home just like he promised.

  • Jesus… I know how to cook. But when emancipation rolled along my people were living in caves in the Atlas mountains. I cook because I like good food. Is that so wrong?

  • btw, froylein– what is the difference between American and Euro museum-goers??

  • Chutzpah, sounds like a plan, just make sure to use protection.

    ck, I consider you an old-school gentleman with unusual skills.

    Tom, the difference is that Americans start talking about exhibits loudly and at the top of their lungs before they even know what those exhibits are. That, or as heard frequently as a question directed at staff right after entering a museum, “Where’s the food court?”

  • froylein– I’ll make sure to shout next time I’m at the museum, so I don’t get mistaken for one of those war-on-terror-slacker Euros….

    Just for truthiness’ sake, Middle couldn’t stick an open 12-footer if his life depended on it.

  • Middle, I’m aware of that. Back when I was young and attractive, a professional basketball player was trying to hit on me. He stood 6’11” tall, which would equal to me standing on a kitchen chair.

  • A few questions, Chutzpah:

    So, when a black guy sticks up the 7-11, or, even better, just dates a white woman, the whites are justified in lynching all the blacks, right?

    So, when a Jim Bakker fleeces his flock to fund a lavish life-style, it’s OK to assume all Christians are thieves and steal their stuff becaue, after all, they stole first, right?

    So, when a Hindu or Buddhist living in the US doesn’t convert to thje dominant religion to prove he’s not a separatist, it’s OK to start a pogrom against his community, right?

    Yeah, Jews who steal, etc., are a disgrace and we should be ashamed of them, but Jesus Fucking Christ on a sidecar. You clealry need a hell of a lot more therapy than you got.

  • I’ve seen TM hit 20 footers – remember that time we beat those two 17 year old pishers? We relied mostly on our outside game, though we scored on a few nice, hotly defended layups and jump shots. It nearly killed us of course, but still, we won. And the trash talk was fun.

  • No Ephraim, it’s not ok for people of any race or religion to do criminal acts.
    Yes, it is ok to want to separate oneself from the criminals rather than defend them just because one is of the same race or religion than the criminals.
    In fact, it is also ok to criticize criminals of the same race or religion as oneself. I would go so far as to say it is even ok to call someone a major asshole even if we are of the same religion, but I’ll wait until after Tisha B’Av say that about you in the spirit of brotherly/sisterly love I been trying to achieve for on for the past 3 weeks.

  • Rabbi Shlomo fucking Yitzchaki of France on a sidecar, Middle, skip the jumpshots and just try to pull off the white eyelet shirt.

  • Would that be eyelet as in hook-and-eye closure or as in the American term for broiderie anglaise? If the latter, I’ve got a white dress in broiderie anglaise, so Middle and I could embarrassingly co-ordinate our outfits. 🙂

    Chutzpah, need some music for your dancing performance?

  • broiderie anglaise. see the video posted under “prayers for lower gas prices” to see what Middle and I are doing the boogie to today!

  • BTW, the fans loved Emma and this video was posted on a fan website thanks to you Froylein!

  • Chutzpah, you’re most welcome.

    Tom, ah, let me share some more dance music with you (this thread seems to be a family affair anyway):

    (much funnier in German, but I’ll give you the English version)

  • Go ahead and criticize individual Jews all you want, Chutzpah. I do it myself sometimes, believe it or not.

    Just don’t go around mouthing a version of “You know, I think the Nazis were right. Anti-Semitism is all our own fault. If we weren’t such elitist, racist, thieving bastards everything would be fine.”

    I mean, come on:

    Members of the Tribe put their allegiance to the Torah first and the land they live in second. That’s why most lands they have lived wanted them to move the hell out. Can you really blame them?

    And by the way, how dare the goyim make us take off our sheitels when they arrest us for welfare fraud…we are such good citizens! Why would they want us leave?

    You can call me an asshole any time you want. No skin off my Jew hook-nose.

    Gotta go, time to cheat some naive, trusting, hard-working goyim out of their family farm.

  • You know, Ephraim, it’s a well-kept secret that we gentiles do what we can to avoid scandalizing the Jews. Take John Edwards, for example. With scrupulous tact he waited until many Jews were off to sabbath services before disclosing he does not have a love child. (Let’s hope the whole matter is forgotten by tomorrow.)

  • I specifically said it was the MAYBE it was “.05 – 1%” our fault so that maybe we should scrutinize ourselves with less of unbiased view.

    Ephraim, I didn’t know you were a Rusbaskin…that explains alot!

  • Rubashkin…you know the ones that put the hard working goyim that were here illegally working for the legal Jews under illegal social security numbers being paid below going Union wages…

  • I didn’t say that Rubashkin is not a shande.

    I said you should stop saying that the goyim have a point when they say “Look at Rubashkin; that proves all the Jews are bad news. Let’s get rid of them.”

    Do you assume all Germans are murderers because of the Nazis? Or when you see a non-Jew commit a crime that all non-Jews are therefore criminals?

    If you don’t, stop saying “Rubashkin is a scandal, the goyim are right to want to run us out”.

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