I got married and moved to Lakewood.
Tooyoungtoteach? In Lakewood? Oooookay…..
I was pleasantly surprised to find that I liked it in Lakewood. The community caters to a young newly married crowd, it’s easy to navigate, my apartments nice, and good outlet malls aren’t far off.
I realized that everything I so hated about Lakewood would not be an issue until I have children, or really until I have to send them to school. That’s when all the cliché’s are recognized to be real. The conformity, that narrow-mindness, the judging, the shallowness, you can fill in the blank yourself.
But never mind the negativity in the previous paragraph. I was happy in Lakewood. In my loverly cacoon of Shana Rishona. Marriage has softened me a bit, made me lose my edge. I don’t get up in arms and as indignant and “ it’s the Principle of the matter!!!” much anymore. Until this past Shabbos that is. I was jolted out of serenity, and sharply reminded that while my stay in Lakewood is nice now, I will LOATHE it passionately later.
This is what happened.
My sister-in-law, a very fine Bais Yaakov girl, from Lakewood, who I am very proud to be affiliated with, is involved in a youth tznius organization. She not involved in terms of ideology necessarily, but does a lot of work for them. In any case, she recruited me to sing on CD they were sending out in a mass-mailing. (My brother wanted to hear the cd, but he can’t listen to any of the other girls singing, so having me, his sister, accompany her was the perfect solution).
I had a great time recording. It was my first time ever and I enjoyed the experience. Me Geit Veiyter.
I was by my parents for Shabbos and I don’t recall how it came up, but my mother ending up slipping to me, that the tznius organization wasn’t going to be using any of the tracks that I sang on. They loved my voice, it’s beautiful, don’t get them wrong. However, in comparison to my sister-in-laws voice (which is quite nice) mine is much more trained, and since the purpose of the organization is to promote tznius, they didn’t think it was a good idea to have a voice like mine on their cd.
AND I LOST IT.
I don’t give a darn if they use tracks or not. I’m getting back on my “Principle of the Matter” soapbox.
WHY IS A TRAINED VOICE NOT TZNIUS?!?!!!
I am a Jack of all trades, a master of none. I can act, dance, draw, write, and sing. There is nothing to admire about me because I’m so talented. I was born like this. What I DO admire in talents, is development of them. When someone takes their G-d given talents, acknowledges them and does something with it, conquers it, advances it, masters it, makes it their own, rather than something that just fell into their lap.
Raw anything: talent, intelligence, character, is nothing to admire. Only when someone makes it their own are they worthy or notice.
So I worked on my writing skills, and my voice. While I haven’t taken them as far as I can, I’ve done more than most people.
Why someone who has developed their talents deemed not tznius?
The head of the tznius organization (who btw, is a prominent high school teacher, so her perspectives are being further sanctioned in Lakewood) also said, my voice doesn’t sound so Jewish.
A trained voice is not Jewish? Seriously, a trained voice should be the most Jewish thing out there. I’ve taken what Hashem gave me, and did something with it. Just because Jewish music is fraught with lousy voices means something of quality is un-Jewish.
I always said the difference between Brooklyn and Lakewood, and what makes Brooklyn better is that Brooklyn is shallow and knows it, Lakewood is just as shallow, but disguises it as krumkeit.
(Step off soap box and walk away in disgust to the lack of response)