aired Sept. 20, 2014 on Dave’s Gone By. Youtube clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AF1GwetYq3E
Shalom Dammit! This is Rabbi Sol Solomon with a Rabbinical Reflection for the week of September 21, 2014.
Over this summer, I had my beefs with celebrities – some Jewish, some not – and their bashing of Israel over the Gaza War. Celebrities who are either misinformed or simply too damn dumb to know who their friends are in this world, versus who the enemies are. Who is creating a climate of death and destruction versus who is just trying to live without being hit by rockets every day? So fie on Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem and Rihanna and that putz from Pink Floyd Roger Waters, and Chuck D, who’s been salting his lyrics with anti-Semitic slurs since day one. You wanna know what a Terrordome is, Chuck? Go live in Israel and be forced to live under an iron terrordome so that Hamas rockets don’t fall on your black ass. Why don’t you do that, Chuck D-spicable?
Meanwhile, other famous folk have been fabulous! Howard Stern, Bill Maher, Joan Rivers – she should rest in peace – Woody Allen, who gave a wonderful, insightful interview about the situation. He was the first one to say that if, back in 1948, the Arabs had treated Israel like a friendly neighbor instead of hornets’ nest, everything would be different. Notice: it’s all the funny people, the comedians, who see through the Palestinian PR poppycock. I guess it takes a humorist to shoot the arrows of logic through balloons filled with hot-air. Or, in the Arabs’ case, airplanes filled with terrorists. Thank God the funny people get it, because all these self-inflated “serious” actors and musical artistes – they look in the mirror and see Felix Frankfurter staring back at them – instead of the hot dogs they really are.
Even so, I come today not to vilify my enemies but to glorify my brethren and, in this case, sistren. In celebrity news last week, it was revealed that the Jewish people will be gaining a notable. The decades since World War II have seen our numbers chopped by the Holocaust, by assimilation, by intermarriage, by – you should pardon the expression – conversion (ptooey!). Now, the Orthodox are doing their best to reverse the trend. They’re shtupping and shtupping and being fruitful and multiplying, which has been heavenly to the cause, even as it’s been hell on the welfare rolls.
But we cannot rely merely on the horniness of our most devout cohorts to bolster our population. It is a delight, therefore, to report that yes, we’re getting one back. Someone who, if nothing else, raises the overall good-looks quotient of our nation by at least a percent or two.
Gwyneth Paltrow, a shikseh goddess if there ever was one – tall, blonde, willowy, pretty as a picture and pretty in motion pictures – Gwyneth Paltrow is converting to Judaism. Now, to be clear, she’s already halfway there. Her father was television producer Bruce Paltrow, a proud member of the tribe. Her mother, however, is the lovely non-Jewish actress Blythe Danner. She’s the one on TV commercials hawking Prolia, a pharmaceutical that helps weak bones, which is ironic because you don’t get nicer bones than Blythe Danner or her kid.
Little Gwyneth was raised in a home with both religions, which she found very nice. But in recent years, she’s been studying Kabbalah, which is a weird, mystical occult offshoot of Judaism. Kind of liked dungeons and dragons, only the dungeons are synagogues and the dragons have big noses and law degrees.
But Paltrow is not just being swayed by a cultish micro-sect. She’s done her homework. In 2011, she appeared on that TV show that delves into your genealogical history. She went into the Eldridge Street Synagogue on the Lower East Side and looked at pictures of her father’s father’s father – a great Rabbi. And his father, also a Kabbalistic Rebbe of note. With people like that in your lineage, what are you gonna be, a Presbyterian?
And Ms. Paltrow has said that she wants to bring her children up, quote, “in a Jewish environment.” Well, she’s in Hollywood, so she’s already there. But she’s got one kid named Moses – so come on, she might as well have named him Jewy Jewberg – and the other child she famously named Apple. Well, is there a more Jewish fruit? From Eve in the garden to the treat we dip in honey for a sweet New Year, the apple is a treasured food for our people – and it doesn’t clog up your tuchas like matzoh.
And speaking of eating, Paltrow has said that she loves to cook and feed people, making her a Jewish mother, and she has amazing genes, making her a Jewish princess. And hey, considering all the macrobiotic laboratory crap she eats, she’s a Jewish doctor, too!
Now, all of this could just be a star’s fad, or Paltrow trying to find herself after consciously uncoupling from her shaygitz husband of more than a decade. Whatever the reason, I hope it takes. I hope she finds in Judaism a beautiful way of life – not from all the rules, not from the mystical narishkeit, but from fully joining a people that has survived the worst the universe can throw at them and still turn to each other and say, “Really? Those shoes with that shirt?” Welcome, Golden Gwyneth, to the fold, and when your kids turn 12, look me up. I can have them chanting the Haftorah like Yossele Rosenblatt in three months flat, or your money back. Well, some of your money back.
This has been a Rabbinical Reflection from Rabbi Sol Solomon, Temple Sons of Bitches in Great Neck, New York.
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