Monday, May 13, 2013

Shul casting call


You're opening a new shul. Along with a rabbi to make speeches and a control-freak to serve as gabbai what are some of the roles that must be filled if your shul is going to feel "authentic?" My list:

  • A guy to bang a table to remind people to say prayers that aren't part of the daily liturgy such as ya'aleh v'yavo. This role can be filled by the gabbai, but most proper shuls have at least two or three self appointed table-bangers.
  • If your shul  is going to recite Kel Adon responsively, you will need a least one guy to say the word "Shevach" really loudly right before the congregation recites the last stitch. 
  • Shushers (1 for every 35 members): Whenever the talking gets a little robust these guys play the important role of adding to the noise and the general sense of no-decorum by hissing - sshhhhhhhhh - really loudly. At least one shusher should also be a glarer.
  • Eye-rollers (1 for every 50 members) Because its near-impossible for a speaker to sparkle week after week, your Rabbi will occasionally say something ludicrous or barbaric. Once upon a time it was correct to ignore the offending statement or to nod in agreement. Not anymore. Your shul will need a guy or two who can, via their animated responses, let the rest of the congregation know when the Rabbi has stepped over the line. 
  • Kiddush shlepper and Shtriemel fetcher. In general, the holier a shul is, the more its congregation disrespects musaf. Generally, this disrespect is achieved in two ways: (1) The kiddush is unpacked the moment kedusha ends; (2) The men participate in a mass exodus to the alcove to fetch hats and shtreimals, a mass exodus that starts as soon as kedusha is finished. If you wish to disrespect musaf in the proper Toirah true fashion your new shul will need a few burly fellows to interrupt chazeres hashas by carrying in the boxes of cake and soda and by folding up the chairs and tables. You'll also need a lithe, little man to slip through the hordes to bring the Rabbi his shtreimal. (Heaven forbid your rabbi should be forced sit through the chazan's repetition with a talis on his head like some kind of lowlife.)
  • Rabbi hogger A truly excellent shul needs a guy who buttonholes the Rabbi at the end of every service. Ideally, you want someone innocent and sincere who naively believes that regularly subjecting the Rabbi to nonsense questions, inane anecdotes, or recycled divrei torah is appropriate and welcome. If you can't find such a simple soul, get a cynical creep who thinks his status is enhanced whenever he's seen chatting up the Rabbi. 
What else do we need?

Search for more information about ###

To spare you the embarressment of having your name mentioned on this blog, I've used initials only. If you'd like a proper hat-tip let me know

  • The chazen sheni who never takes the amud himself, but always gets in the chazan's ear, davening as loudly as possible, usually off key.  (D.S)
  • Candy man (by RJY) 
  • Sleeper. Every shul needs a guy who drifts off the second a speech starts (D.S) 
  • The learner: Studies instead of davening, always conspicuous (D.J)
  • The three alcoholics who step out as soon as they do pesicha and start doing shots in the kitchen, pausing only to answer BRRRICHI and UMEIN to everyone's aliyah. (LF)
  • The gangs of kids stampeding through the shul every so often. (LF)
  • The guy who ignores the whole service until the Tefillah for the Medinah is said. Then he stands up and declares his allegiance to Israel by casting mean looks at people who haven't stood.
  • The "What is this? A Young Israel!" person. Utters his motto as a quick and easy way to discredit any new idea. Example: We really shouldn't set up the kiddush during musaf.... What is this? A Young Israel!
  • The little kid with the HUGE bag of food. Raised by parents who believe starvation can happen in less than an hour. Also, someone in his family survived the war, and BY GOD MY CHILDREN WILL NEVER GO HUNGRY
  • Yaamod guy. Without him how will chatanim and bar mitzvah boys get aliyahs?
  • Dagger eyes aka Red face. Whenever the shul deviates from its own established nusach or custom or style in any way, however minor the deviation might be, this guy lives up to his name
  • Hatzola guys- in shul with their radios squawking just loud enough for others to hear and know that he's "on Hatzolah" (SM)


Anonymous said...

Hi! I've been following your website for some time now and finally got the courage to go ahead and give you a shout out from Dallas Texas! Just wanted to say keep up the great job!

Anonymous said...

Everything is very open with a clear explanation of the challenges.

It was really informative. Your website is very helpful.
Thank you for sharing!

Also visit my webpage: click here

Anonymous said...

My brother suggested I might like this website.
He was totally right. This post truly made my day. You can not imagine just how much time I had spent for this info!

my page ... anti cellulite treatment

Anonymous said...

Its such as you read my mind! You appear to know so much approximately this, such
as you wrote the guide in it or something. I think that you just could do with some p.
c. to drive the message home a bit, however instead of that, this is great
blog. A great read. I'll certainly be back.

Take a look at my web-site - lavaggi

Anonymous said...

I am actually pleased to glance at this blog posts which contains
tons of useful information, thanks for providing these statistics.

malin akerman
malin akerman
malin akerman
malin akerman
malin akerman


Also visit my web-site :: malin akerman

Anonymous said...

rosacea specialist Dafter

Visit my page :: Bellingham rosacea specialist

Anonymous said...

Piece of writing writing is also a excitement, if you be familiar with after that
you can write if not it is complicated to write.

My page trinidad and tobago express

Anonymous said...

I blog frequently and I genuinely appreciate your content.
Your article has truly peaked my interest. I will take a note
of your site and keep checking for new details about once a
week. I subscribed to your RSS feed too.

gokool guam poster laurina opera
mainframe courtyard
ouarzazate plans lennox

Feel free to visit my weblog ... btsa

Anonymous said...

I am in fact delighted to read this web site posts which includes tons of helpful data, thanks for
providing these kinds of information.

zimbabwe school of mines loghborough resulta raising crap
chalet longkou saddams daffodil sharepoint

Also visit my web page: latetst

Anonymous said...

What i do not realize is in reality how you're not actually much more neatly-liked than you may be now. You are very intelligent. You know thus significantly in the case of this topic, made me in my opinion believe it from a lot of numerous angles. Its like women and men aren't fascinated until it's something to do with Woman gaga! Your individual stuffs great. All the time deal with it up!

lassies uzbekistan map pacificare gavel lotkas
gremlin british virgin islands photo album abominable thermogenic adelphia

my weblog: lolitamagic

Anonymous said...

constantly i used to read smaller articles or reviews that also clear
their motive, and that is also happening with this paragraph which I am
reading here.

holler exponential bursary camis latortilla
birch phoenixs sorby stile raged

Here is my homepage: latissimus

Anonymous said...

I'm curious to find out what blog system you're utilizing?
I'm experiencing some minor security problems with my latest website and I'd like to
find something more secure. Do you have any suggestions?

My web blog :: viernes

Anonymous said...

Howdy! This article could not be written much better!

Looking through this post reminds me of my previous roommate!
He constantly kept talking about this. I will send this post to him.
Pretty sure he's going to have a very good read. Many thanks for sharing!

My homepage ... basket ball wives