Monday, October 03, 2005

From "The Joys of Yiddish"

In advance of Rosh Hashanah, some oldies but goodies as transmitted by Leo Rosten. L'Shanah Tovah!

If God lived on earth people would knock out all his windows.

Two ignoramuses were arguing: "Does a slice of bread fall with the buttered side up or down?"

Jacob said, "With the buttered side down!"

Max said, "With the buttered side up!"

So they made a bet. Jacob buttered a slice of bread, raised it, and let it drop. It fell buttered side up.

"I win!" cried Max.

"Only because I made a mistake," Jacob protested.

"What mistake?"

"I buttered the wrong side."

Scene: A pushcart on the Lower East Side. A woman picks up a broken fork. "How much?"

"One cent" says the proprietor.

"One cent? That's too much!"

"So make me an offer."

"Forty cents a dozen for bialies?" protested Mrs. Becker. "The baker across the street is asking only twenty."

"So buy them across the street."

"Today, he happens to be sold out."

"When I'm out of bialies, I charge only twenty cents a dozen, too."

Chutzpah is that quality enshrined in a man who, having killed his mother and father, throws himself on the mercy of the court because he is an orphan.

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At 7:09 AM, Blogger kenju said...

I LOVE the one about bialies!

At 10:23 AM, Blogger Ron Hudson said...

I love the definition of schlemiel vs. schlemozzel....

The schlemiel is someone who dies by throwing himself off a building.

The schlemozzel is the poor schmuck he lands on and kills in the process.


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