Sunday, April 1, 2007

Learning, Language, and Lingerie ( the israel experience-week 3 & 4)

Very sorry about not updating earlier, I know I told some faithful readers I'd post weekly, but alas, a mortal can only make plans; the Lord controls what happens in one's life. Sometimes the Holy One wants us to be at a certain place at a certain time, for many reasons, such as finding previously hidden items; case in point, last week, we find for some inexplicablr reason, a red lacy bra in the apartment below mine. I say inexplicable because a) it's a guy only apartment, b) none of said guys are crossdressers, c) none of said straight guys have girlfriends. Obviously, in such circumstances, righteous chaos ensued.
Typical of the standard behavior that occurs when many young adult males are cooped up together for extensive lengths of time, suddenly, even the most mature and adult- like of the boys joined in on the sophomoric antics. First guys just ran around with it, swinging it like they just emerged from a sorority house Animal House style, and whooping at the top of their lungs, gleefully. Then, the more daring ones tried it on ("as a joke of course, I mean, c'mon guys, I just wanted to see how I'd look. I'm straight, I swear!" was a common excuse...), and posed for very flattering pictures. I own the hard copies ( blackmail isn't ruthless; it's business...). Then we moved on to more avante guard acts. The apartment next door to us is full of chassidishe dudes, so at one point of the evening, we chucked it over onto their porch, trying to hook it on a guy's head, or something. They weren't pleased ( or maybe they were....). When we got it back from them ( reluctantly?), we decided to push the envelope a bit. You see, there is a squat, green dumpster that is on the corner of our block. At 3 in the morning, no one is around to see, if, hypothetically, one was to scamper down, and gently and carefully place the peice of cloth in question in a way that makes it look as if it had been carelessly tossed in , but was still quite visible to passerby.
One of the guys gets up for minyan very early, so he was chosen to set up post, and keep an eye on the dumpster from our porch, armed with a digital video camera. Naturally, by the early morning, it was gone, but we still got one very funny clip of a Yerushalmi guy's reaction......
Moving along, I don't know if anyone knows, but since I came to the Holy Land at the same time as Jake7484 (, we've decided to learn together once a week. I've been enjoying it immensely.
In the meantime, it seems as if the language barrier is getting smaller every day. As time goes by, I feel I'm picking up more and more of not just the language, but the nuances as well. However, for some odd reason, I associate hebrew with spanish, and more than once, I unconciously greeted someone with a " Que pasa!" instead of a "ma nishma!" Whatever....
Not only that, but the other day, because of my feeble grasp of the language, I almost got seriously beaten up. My brother asked me to buy a dozen eggs on my way to his place. Instead of looking around, I went straight over to the owner, and with a smile on my face, asked him: "yesh lecha beitzim?"
The guy exploded in my face, screaming at the top of his lungs. I swear, I have'nt had a bowel movement like that since before I came to the Holy Land. I thought the guy was gonna kill me, or himself, judging by the huge vein throbbing on his forehead. For those who don't understand, beitzim means eggs, but it also can be used in reference to a certain part of the male's anatomy. After the guy calmed down, we had a good laugh. Then, joking and smiling, he proceeded to rip me off for said dozen of eggs.
Have a great shabbos!
Originally posted Saturday, 1 October 2005

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