Tag Archives: English

Deliver Me From Evil (poor grammar)


Image by squidpants via Flickr

My sister calls me up,

“A heavily pregnant woman walks into a pizza store,” she starts.

“Ok,” I reply, warming up to the jokes opening line.

“She places her order, and then asks the guy behind the counter  ‘can you deliver me?’”

I burst out laughing. Hysterical, I think. A new level of misplaced modifiers!

And then my sister upped the ante.

“It’s a true story.”

“What?!” I spurt, “Who told it to you?”  I thought she’d then tell me one of those endless chains of friend’s sister’s cousin’s aunt’s dog, five years ago, but no, this was only second hand news.

“Ta!” she tells me proudly.

“No way! – Let me talk to him!”  

A few moments later, I move up the chain, and hear it from the observer. And now I am passing this gem onto you, guard it with your life.

This is not an urban legend, or a good joke, this is a True Story.



Posted by on May 26, 2011 in Humor


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Idiom = Idiot

She thought it was cute. I thought it was hysterical.

I was talking to a heimish/chassidish neighbor on Shabbos. I don’t recall how we got to the topic or what the topic even was, but she was reminded of a cute story that happened when she was first married.

In the beginning, her husband liked to go out at night, to Wal-Mart, for a walk, anything, he just liked to be out. She would go along with him some nights and other nights make excuses, like she had laundry, or something around the house that had to be done. He cottoned on, and realized, that she didn’t really like going out at night.

He turns to her soon after and says,

“You know, when we got information about you, everyone said you were a very out-going girl.”

My neighbor looked at her husband in surprise and protest, “I am!” she insisted (and she is).

Her husband was perplexed, “So why don’t you like going out at night?”

My neighbor, thought the misunderstood idiom by her Williamsburg raised husband was the cutest ever. I just thought it was hysterical in a laugh at you – not with you way.

It took every ounce of self control to not dissolve into howling laughter.


Posted by on May 15, 2011 in Humor, Jewish, Marriage


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Husband Hashpa’ah #1

Ever since I’ve gotten married, I expanded my vocabulary. This is of course encouraged by all educators, as it broadens the mind and enables a person to communicate more accurately and effectively. It’s also a great way to look smart and intimidate people when need be. However, I’m not sure my newly acquired lexis, will garner me much fear and respect. You see, I’ve learned to speak yeshivish, courtesy of my husband.

I’m sure you understand that there are several levels in increasing one’s vocabulary: there is recognizing the word while reading, using the word in writing and last using the word in your own speech.

It’s not just that my husband uses these words and I understand him. But even further, I’ve found these words creeping into conversations with my friends, who are, well, far from yeshivish. I’m finding it mildly amusing, but mostly bemusing as I feel my IQ dropping by the idiom.

I compiled several examples of my lapses in to “yeshivish” for your entertainment….I’m too self depreciating, I know 🙂

Maskim – I’m not Maskim to that style, navy and black does not match

Chutsh – He said no, after 6 dates? Did he chutsh give a decent reason

Lmaaysa – She thought she was going to BJJ, then she figured Bnos Sarah, l’maaysa, she’s in Machon Half Day and Touro

Ein hechi nami – I’m not, not going with you, ein hachen ami, I’m just not coming, I don’t feel well

Lechoyra – She seems like a nice girl, Lechoyra, but honestly, I don’t really know her

Epes – It has epes a design on the skirt, real nice.

Be’eztem – It’s a nice idea to buy a 16 piece serving set by Noritake, but be’etzem I don’t think it’s gonna work out, kollel budget, remember?

B’kiztur – ….she told her that she didn’t mean that, but she thought that she said she did and around and around, whatever, b’kitzur, they’re not talking

Ch’kav – ooooh, that salad bowl is ch’kav…I like those details, don’t think I’ve ever seen that combination anywhere

Mudne – she said that? Really? That’s mudne, why would they do that?

Shvacha meysos – She said she worked on it for hours, look at it, shvacha meysos, she dumped it together in five minutes

Uber – I wanted to buy that ring, uber I knew my Rabbi was getting me something for yomtov so I just waited

Raya – Ye….can you tell me about Chanche Bronche? She’s very hardworking…ye, and creative….can you give me a raya?

Klering – I’m going to my in-laws for the first days; we were klering on going the second days, but I have to be back for work

Dveilah – I’m looking for a job, dveilah, I’m brushing up on my culinary skills.

UpShlug (shlug someone up) – The salesperson tried giving me a million and half stupid reasons why it looked great on me, and that I should buy it, but I had no patience and she was making me nervous, so I shlugged her up on every point….ooh it felt good…Good thing I don’t shop there that often

Zicher – He’s zicher gonna want to come home, so I’ll have to cook supper anyway

Ten points for you if you can define each word I used. Have fun in the comments!

Part 2 in 2 days.


Posted by on October 7, 2009 in Jewish, Marriage


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You’re Never Too Old

I met my eighth grade teacher yesterday. She had an appointment in the school that I teach in. I was sitting in the office marking papers, and I heard her voice.


All of a sudden I was back in her classroom. I could smell her musty clothes; see her sincere smile, wide with enamel stripped teeth. I didn’t like her classes, but I liked her. She was one of the good ones, those who cared, and even when they had no idea what to do with you, but still stuck around, when you slapped them in the face after all their efforts, were still there.


I haven’t seen her since 10th grade, when I met her while walking past my elementary school. We exchanged pleasantries, but not much more. Meeting her now was interesting; I’m a different person. I’ve made something of myself, I’ve come a long way since that purposefully annoying, inquisitive child that I was.


So she was standing right outside the office, and I heard her tell the secretary.


“I’m Mrs. Schwartz….”


My back was facing her, I turned around and said,


“Hi, I’m TooYoungToTeach, I don’t know…”


She cut me off,


“I knew you looked so familiar!” she paused with a small smile. “Don’t tell me you’re teaching here?!”


I smiled broadly and said, “Yup.”




“Yeah,” I continued, “that’s the reaction most people have. Something’s gotta be wrong with the system if I’m teaching.


She shook her head,


“No I can see it, I can see it,” she repeated. “What do you teach?


“English and Writing, 10th and 11th


“That I can really see, right up your alley!”


I nodded fervently, like a little kid, lapping it up.


And then she went into meeting, and I went back to my marking.


We never grow old of approval.


Posted by on November 11, 2008 in Teaching


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Yom Kippur Elucidated

I love Artscroll. Not because of the obvious fact that when you’re davening and counting pages you get to divide the page number in half, and WaLah davening is half over.


I took a good look this Yom Kippur at the English translation, and you know what, the tefilos are beautiful.


People ask, why do we all daven the same words? How can we all say the same thing and convey our own message?


Besides for the explanation that same piece of music played by someone else will always be different, therein lies the difference. I want to focus on the explanation that we have lost the ability to fully express ourselves to Hashem and Anshe Knessess Hagedolah set up organized prayer for the laymen, so everyone can reach Hashem with eloquence.


Whenever I heard that explanation I always thought, can these same words really express what I want to say to what someone else is trying to convey? Are these words really that beautiful. I never took the time to read the English translation. Following along with the Chazzan today, I fell in love with davening.


Take Kesser for an example.


The first line, (this is from the Artscroll translation)


“A crown, here give You, O Hashem, our G-d – the angels of the multitude above, together with Your people Israel who are assembled below”


As I was reading this I got such a visual picture of what it might look like, and it blew me away.


And there was plain old beautiful analogies, and metaphors which I as an English teacher appreciated.


“A man’s origin is from dust and his destiny is back to dust, at risk of his life he earns his bread; he is likened to a broken shard, withering grass, a fading flower, a passing shade, a dissipating cloud, a blowing wind, flying dust, and a fleeting dream.”


I can go on and on….it was beautiful.


Yom Kippur was good.

And then I looked at the seating chart and saw “Please do not sit in a seat WHICH is reserved” and I cringed at the obvious grammatical error rooted in Yiddish transliteration and the fact that I noticed it…on Yom Kippur.


Posted by on October 10, 2008 in Yom Tov


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