Rabbi Sol Solomon’s Rabbinical Reflection #156 (8/11/18) – Joke Time

Rabbi Sol Solomon’s Rabbinical Reflection #156 (8/11/18) –  JOKE TIME

 Airs Aug. 11, 2018 on Dave’s Gone By.  Youtube:

Shalom, Dammit! This is Rabbi Sol Solomon with a Rabbinical Reflection for the week of Aug. 11, 2018.

Well, my friends, I hope you’ve been having a terrific summertime. I haven’t. I’ve been in pain, I’m getting angry letters from my accountant, and my local deli raised prices on everything but the free mustard, so I am seething, my friends. But what better way to get me out of my funk, out of my relentlessly pissed-off state than with jokes? I love sharing jokes with a Jewish flavor and then offering a bit of interpretation, some talmudic reconnaissance, if you will, to put the comedy in a Kosher context.

Full disclosure: This joke comes from the comedian Jackie “The Jokeman” Martling, who is not Jewish but might be circumcised. It’s about a guy who has suffered for years with terrible headaches. He’s been to doctors, neurologists, acupuncture, meditation—nothing helps. Finally, he visits a specialist who checks his eyes, checks his pulse, listens to his heart, and tells him, “Okay, I’ve got good news, and I’ve got bad news. The good news is: you can cure your headaches completely once and for all.”

“That’s amazing!” the guy says. “What do I do?”

“The bad news,” the specialist says, “is that you must have your testicles removed.”

“What?” screams the man. “Castration?”

“I’m sorry,” says the doctor. “That’s the only way. Chop off the testicles, and you’ll be fine.”

Distraught, the man goes home to think it over. But he can’t think because his headaches are so bad. Finally, he says, “I can’t take this anymore. I’ll do it.”

So he goes for the surgery: cuts his nuts off. After a couple of days recovering, he’s walking around the house cleaning, dusting…and he realizes, “Oh my God! I’m not in pain. My headache is gone! I feel great!” He starts dancing, singing—he’s so happy, he doesn’t know what to do with himself. That’s when he thinks, “You know, I feel like a new man, so I’m gonna change my life. And the first step is getting myself a new suit of clothes. I feel like a million bucks; now I wanna dress like it.”

So the guy does some research and learns that the best tailor in New York is, of course, in the garment district. He makes an appointment saying money’s no object, shows up at the cramped little shop on 38th Street, and asks for the famous Chaim Shmulovitz.

After a couple of minutes, a wizened old Jewish man shuffles out of the back room. He says nothing as he stares at the visitor, taking him in from head to toe. “Okay,” says Chaim. “You need a Borsalino hat, short-brim, size 7 1/4. Then we’ll get you a double-breasted, executive-cut suit, two buttons, size 40 regular. The pants also 40 with a 28 inseam. Silk tie with patterning. Shoes you’re an 8 1/2, wide-width, Oxford. Oh, and can’t leave out the underwear: you take a Hanes medium V-neck and size 38 briefs. Come back in a week, and you’re all set.”

“Wow,” says the guy. “I heard you were good, but that’s amazing! Just by looking at me, you got my whole style to a T, including the sizes.”

“Of course I did,” says Chaim. “I’m not in the business 60 years without being the best.”

“However,” says the guy, “you did make one mistake. For the underpants, I take a 34 brief, not a 38.”

“Mister, don’t tell me my job. You take a medium undershirt and size 38 on the briefs, and that’s that.”

“Excuse me,” says the man. “You may know your job, but I know myself, and I’ve been shopping for my own clothes all my life. I take a 34 or I take my business elsewhere.”

“Okay, okay,” says Chaim. “The customer is always right—even when he’s wrong. You want a 34? 34 it is. But I warn you: if you wear size 34 briefs, your left testicle is gonna slide out the side and hang down, the right testicle is gonna spill out and mash against your thigh, the middle will pull up in between. You will get the most terrible headaches.”


Now what do we learn from this joke? First of all, if you do business with an old Jewish man who has six decades experience, you probably want to listen to him—just as when we consider laws in the bible. HaShem invented these rules for living 2000 years ago, so even if we think we know better, we probably don’t know better. So if you’ve been coveting thy neighbor’s ox, even today, you’re better off disregarding your neighbor and buying your own ox. And getting therapy.

We also learn from this joke that sometimes the solution to a problem is easier than you think—you just haven’t thinked it yet. God knows how many different chemical compounds Alexander Flemming was futzing around with before he came back from a vacation, saw mold growing in a petri dish, and bing-bang-boom! goodbye syphilis. So whenever you think you have a solution for a crisis, take one more moment to make sure you’re not cutting off your beitzim to spite your punim.


On to the next joke:

Irving, my second cousin, is a very troubled man. Every night, he gets drunk on Manischewitz, and then his wife starts yelling at him, “Oh, you’re killing yourself with that alcohol. You keep drinking that much, you’re gonna die.”

Finally, last week Irving wakes up after passing out the night before, looks across the room, and starts to laugh. “Serves you right, Marjorie,” he yells. “You’re so worried about me killing myself with booze, but you’re the one lying dead with your head bashed in.”


What do we learn from that joke? Nothing, we learn absolutely nothing from that horrible joke. Let us just move on.


Although he denies it, my uncle Benny has been having hearing problems. He and my aunt Sophie argue about it all the time. Finally, she demands he visit an audiologist. Benny tells the guy, “I’m fine. There’s no problem. I’m only here because my wife says she has seen some changes.”

“Oh?” says doctor. “Can you describe the symptoms?”

“Of course I can,” my uncle says. “There’s Homer, who’s bald and yellow. His wife Marge who has big blue hair…”


Ah, the vanity of older men. We don’t want to admit that once we’re 50, everything goes downhill faster than a Raisinet falling out of the box and rolling under your couch. For many of us, admitting to a physical or mental weakness is tantamount to giving up. Today we spot one gray hair in the beard, tomorrow we’re in a nursing home. But as we live longer and longer in the world, we have to get used to diminished capacity and asking for help when we need it. If you can’t walk across the room without a cane, you don’t vist avek forever in a chair; you grab a cane and walk. If you have diabetes, you poke your thumb every morning and get on with your day. If it’s your anniversary and your wife wants a little fun, you take a blue pill, you wait an hour, and then you give her the best two-and-a-half minutes of her life. In all cases, you acknowledge the obstacle and then work your way around it. Just remember: whether it’s diabetes, hearing, or headaches, change your underwear first. You never know.

This has been a Rabbinical Reflection from Rabbi Sol Solomon, Temple Sons of Bitches in Great Neck, New York.

(c) 2018 TotalTheater. All rights reserved.



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Rabbi Sol Solomon’s Rabbinical Reflection #155 (6/10/18): 2018 TONY AWARDS

Airs June 9, 2018 on Dave’s Gone By. Youtube:

Shalom, Dammit! This is Rabbi Sol Solomon with a Rabbinical Reflection for the week of June 10, 2018.

Being Jewish, I don’t know a lot of guys named Tony, but I do know and love one Tony: The Tony Awards! They happen every June, and they celebrate excellence, artistry, and producers’ amazing ability to congratulate their own good taste and wealth. If you love Broadway, ya gotta love the Tonys: the one award ceremony per year that isn’t devoted to horrible country music.

Of course, being a Rabbi, I have my own thoughts on the Tony nominations, which I share each year in a special theatrical Rabbinical Reflection. Basically, I look at all the categories and try to find the Jews. For example, this season’s nominees for Best Play are unbelievably goyish. There’s Junk, written by an Arab; Latin History for Morons, written and performed by the Hispanic John Leguizamo; there’s Harry Potter, which has a black Hermione and a WASPy everyone else; and a drama called The Children, which deals with the aftermath of a holocaust. Don’t get your hopes up. It’s a nuclear holocaust—not the other one.

Jews have better luck with the Best Revival category. Yes, there’s Eugene O’Neill and Edward Albee, but there’s also the half-Jew Kenneth Lonergan and his play, Lobby Hero, which is all about a nebbishy security guard. That character isn’t explicitly Jewish but…come on. Come on! Also in the Revival category, you got Tom Stoppard. A lot of people don’t realize he’s a Yid whose family fled Czechoslovakia during the Nazi occupation. People also might not know that Stoppard’s 1974 comedy, Travesties, deals with two Jews: performance artist Tristan Tzara, and Vladimir Lenin, whose mother was of hidden Jewish ancestry. In fact, there are a lot of things we don’t know about Travesties because no one can understand the fucking thing. But it seems really funny.

And then there’s the elephant in the room—the circumcised, payes-wearing elephant—Tony Kushner and Angels in America. This play starts with a rabbi and goes downhill from there. Seriously, Angels is widely considered a modern classic: the most important play of the latter 20th century—with the possible exception of my own Shalom, Dammit!. (But mine is a musical, so I understand the nominators’ confusion.) My sole quibble with Angels in America is that its focus is on three Jews, and they’re all wretched. Louis is a gay New Yorker sleeping with a shaygitz who gets AIDS, and the symptoms are so horrible, Louis can’t take it. He dumps the boyfriend and starts banging a Mormon. This leaves him with tremendous guilt, which is the one thing a heterosexual Jew can relate to in this play. Meanwhile, the other big Jew is Roy Cohn, the hateful, closeted son-of-a-bitch who helped Joseph McCarthy destroy suspected communists. Among them: the third character, Ethel Rosenberg. She and her husband Julius went to the electric chair for treason for funneling secret documents to the Russian government. Obviously, this was before colluding with Russia became something that got you elected president. All told, as a multi-dimensional drama, Angels in America is major. As a show to bring a group from the Hadassah…I’ll stick with Perfect Crime.

Now, before we get too depressing, let us note that all three Tony nominated musical revivals have Jewish DNA. Carousel: by yidlach Richard Rodgers and half-Jewish Oscar Hammerstein II; My Fair Lady by yidlach Alan Jay Lerner and half-Jewish Frederick Loewe; and Once on this Island, by yidlach Lynn Ahrens and an Irish guy. Strangely enough, all three musicals tell of incandescent women suffering at the hands of asshole men—which is why I’m not taking my wife to any of them.

I am dismayed by the paucity of Jews in the lead acting categories. Andrew Garfield stars in Angels in America, and Amy Schumer made the critics laugh in Meteor Shower, but don’t be fooled! Lauren Ridloff, of Children of a Lesser God, has a Jewish name, but I’m pretty sure she’s a schvartze; and Jessie Mueller looks Jewish but she’s Lutheran. Worse, Josh Groban, who co-hosts this year’s Tonys with Sara Bareilles, had a Jewish father who converted to marry his Christian mother. Everyone assumes Groban is a Yid because of the beard and old footage of him playing Tevye in high school, but he’s as goyish as pulled pork on a Triscuit. People are so worried about fake news; we should worry about fake Jews!

But I kid, because one of the new musicals up for a Tony, and the one most likely to win, is a minyan unto itself. Of course, I am talking about The Band’s Visit, an off-Broadway smash that is wowing them uptown at the Barrymore Theater. It’s written playwright Itamar Moses, whose parents are Israeli, and scored by David Yazbek, who comes from a Lebanese dad and a Jewish mama. More importantly, the musical tells of an Egyptian police band accidentally stuck in a nowhere, hick town in Israel. Is there fear, mistrust, miscommunication? A bit, but there’s also music, empathy, helping, romance, niceness, clever lyrics, lovely music—what’s not to enjoy? The Jews in The Band’s Visit aren’t perfect; in fact, they’re gruff and neurotic compared to the decorous Egyptians, but everyone’s human, everyone’s making the best of a weird situation, no one talks politics, no one wants to talk politics, and by the end, everyone’s a little bit better off through the commingling of cultures. I know I was. Except when I had to explain to my dear wife Miriam Libby why I had to cover my lap with my Playbill every time Katrina Lenk walked onstage. My God, that woman could melt hummus. Was the musical worth sleeping on my couch for three days? Damn right it was. And I will be rooting for The Band’s Visit to win many Tony Awards on Sunday, June 10th, at Radio City’s Hall of Music.

Win or lose, I congratulate all nominees of all de-nominations, and wish for a wonderful night of glamour, showtunes, and chorus boys who don’t have to worry about Kevin Spacey buggering them in the lounge. There’s nothing like live theater and nothing bigger than Broadway. It’s like eating deli; even when the sandwich is mediocre, it’s still deli! And I am hungry for a Broadway feast.

This has been a Rabbinical Reflection from Rabbi Sol Solomon, Temple Sons of Bitches, in Great Neck, New York. Curtain up!

(c) 2018 TotalTheater. All rights reserved.

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Rabbi Sol Solomon’s Rabbinical Reflection #154 (3/24/18) – DimonaLand

Rabbi Sol Solomon’s Rabbinical Reflection #154 (3/24/18) – DimonaLand

airs March 24, 2018 on Dave’s Gone By. Youtube:

Shalom, Dammit! This is Rabbi Sol Solomon with a Rabbinical Reflection for the week of March 25, 2018.

What does Israel really need? What’s missing from the land of milk and honey? Oh, some would say peace between Jews and Arabs. Others might suggest curing cancer or irrigating more of the Negev. But a couple of Rabbis have a different idea. They say what Israel needs most of all is a theme park.

No, I am not kidding. A story in the Jerusalem Post explains that entrepreneurs have been visiting Eretz Yisroel in the hopes of building a Jewish equivalent of Disney’s Magic Kingdom. In fact, planning is well under way for a 60-acre tourist attraction in the heart of Dimona—a city which, until now, was best known for housing the secret arsenal of Israel’s nuclear weapons. What better place to bring kids for a Hebraic vacation or, as I call it, Shlepcot.

The theme park will consist of five “worlds”: “World of Spirits, World of the Jewish Nation, World of Society, World of Time, and Oasis.” Someone got lazy with the last one, there. (Either that, or Noel Gallagher is really out of ideas.) But this is beautiful – Lea Malul, CEO of the project, told the Jerusalem Post, quote, “The park will have the same rides and the same layout as Disney World but with content. It will be 90% fun and 10% content.” Because God forbid Jews should have 100% fun at anything. No, always gotta make room for disappointment and boredom. Even at Passover, a happy holiday where we escaped from slavery and entered the holy land, we pour out 10 percent of our wine glasses. Why? Because Egyptians died, and we’re not supposed to celebrate too much. So now they’ll have a theme park where the last 10 seconds of the roller coaster slows down for a physics lesson.

But seriously, although the original idea for Shlepcot was put forward by a New Jersey Rabbi, the venue won’t be one of these biblical passion pageants. Nevertheless, it will promote Talmudic values. For example—and again, this is right from the Jerusalem Post—the popular Splash Mountain ride will include a theme of six work days and then, after the drop, a calm zone representing the day of rest. There’ll also be a People of the Book Roller Coaster. Which I guess means that Genesis and Exodus go really fast, and the last three books go two miles an hour and put you to sleep before Deuteronomy. They also might consider branding the long lines in the hot sun as representing 40 years in the desert, and making The Haunted Mansion Leona Helmsley’s old apartment.

If the project goes forward, developers expect the surrounding area to be built up with shopping malls, hotels—I’d say falafel stands are a good bet. More importantly, officials from Dimona hope to make that city an international destination. Said one official, quote, “Every year, four million cars pass by en route from Beersheba to Eilat. We want them stopping in Dimona.” What they don’t say is that the city was originally settled by North Africans and later got an influx of Russians. So the theme park will have both rhythm and fixed elections.

Here’s one more quote from Malul, the CEO: “Jewish history is mostly sad – with the Holocaust and so on.” I love that, `the Holocaust and so on.’ Like she’s browsing through a catalogue. But, she says, “this will be a unique way for Jewish values and learning to become fun.” Well, 90 percent fun.

Most promising is the idea that this park will not have Mickey Mouse or Goofy but “alternative characters who will represent the heroes of tomorrow,” unquote. One can only imagine: Ephraim, the plucky lizard. Stingy Duck. Winnie the Jooh. Captain Shnook. Shmuella DeVille. Shimon E. Cricket. And of course, Lilo and Stitch, the stitch being part of grandpa’s hernia operation. And I guess you need seven dwarf-equivalents: Yitzi, Chaiki, Shloimi, Rivki, Doc (who is a Jewish doctor), Gassy, and Grumpy because, let’s face it, Grumpy was always the Jewish one anyway.

Jokes aside, I am all for anything that brings joy and tourism to Dimona. And if some shmegegge employee accidentally pushes the wrong button, and instead of starting the Magic Carpet ride blows up half of Lebanon? Well, that would sure be worth the price of an E-Ticket.

This has been a Rabbinical Reflection from Rabbi Sol Solomon, Temple Sons of Bitches, in Great Neck, New York. (sings) “Leave a small tip after all, leave a small tip after all…”

(c) 2018 TotalTheater. All rights reserved.

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Rabbi Sol Solomon’s Rabbinical Reflection #153 (1/14/18) – Jokes for the New Year

Airs Jan. 14, 2017 on Dave’s Gone By.  Youtube:

Shalom, Dammit! This is Rabbi Sol Solomon with a Rabbinical Reflection for the week of January 14th, 2018.

Since we’ve just begun a new year, I don’t wanna get into race and immigration and fires and floods and Kim Jong Un and Palestinians and black dresses at the Golden Globes . . . I just wanna have a little fun. Let’s keep the brightness of the shanah chadashah going with something this old Rabbi loves almost as much deli meat: jokes. Jokes with a Jewish perspective.

For example, my cousin Irving is an actor in New York, so, of course, he’s unemployed. He gets a call from his agent who says, “I’ve got a job for you. It’s a little unusual, but it pays well, and it uses your mime skills—which, let’s face it, how often, right?”

“Great,” says Irving. “Where do I go?”

“The Bronx Zoo,” says the agent. “And bring a banana.”

So, warily, Irving makes his way uptown and checks in with the zookeeper, who says, “Here’s the deal: Koko, our 38-year-old gorilla, died over the weekend. While we’re waiting to buy a new ape, we don’t wanna lose the crowds. Your job is to dress up in a gorilla suit, go in the cage, and act like a monkey. Fool everyone, and you’ve got the gig for a couple of weeks.”

With no better prospects, Irving agrees, gets in the cage, eats the banana, and starts behaving in an ape-like fashion. And he really gets into it: jumping around, mimicking the crowd, throwing his feces, swinging on the bars. In fact, Irving is so method, he climbs on a rope and tries to swing himself to a tree branch. Unfortunately, he loses his grip and falls into the lion’s cage.

“Gevalt!” screams Irving. “Help me, help me!” as the lion strides towards him. Suddenly, the animal rears up on its hind legs, crouches over Irving and whispers, “Be quiet, schmuck! You wanna get us both fired?”

Now, this is not, per se, a Jewish joke, except for the schmuck part and the out-of-work Jewish actor part. But we can say the perspective is Jewish-esque because it concerns people doing whatever they must to get by. Heaven knows, and heaven does know, what the Jewish people have endured and the sacrifices they’ve made, just to survive in ancient Egypt, or 15th century Spain, or the Warsaw Ghetto, or the 15-items-or-less line at ShopRite. If that means letting someone in power make a monkey out of you, at least the gorilla eats and lives to swing another day.

Now, from swinging we move to skiing, and the Olympic tryouts in Montreal. Vying for the last spot to get into the Olympics were three champion skiers: an American, a Muslim, and an Orthodox Jew. In the final qualifying round, each athlete was allowed to have his trainer place something on the course to motivate and inspire them, which they did.

The trials begin, and the American zips down the slope in record time: 45 seconds. Then the Muslim shusses down the same course: 43 seconds. He’s on top. Finally, the Chassid starts his run, and everyone’s waiting and waiting and waiting. Five minutes later, he finally crosses the finish line.

So the athletes are on their platforms, and the reporters ask their trainers what happened. The American trainer says, “Well, at the starting gate, I put a pile of money. This was a reminder of the commercials and endorsement deals he’d get if he makes the Olympics.”

The reporters then ask the Muslim trainer, “Hey, congratulations. How’d you motivate your athlete to win?”

The trainer says, “Simple. At the finish line, I held up a giant poster of 72 virgins. Who wouldn’t wanna ski towards that?”

Finally, the reporters turn towards the Jewish trainer. They say, “Yankel Bernstein was favored to win this race. Instead he made the slowest time ever. What happened?”

“I dunno,” said the trainer. “I certainly tried to make him feel at home here in Montreal. That’s why I put a mezuzah on every gate.”

This silly but adorable joke gives us another insight into the Jewish character. Looked at one way, we can see that religious life is filled with time-consuming, seemingly unnecessary rituals: do this, wash that, don’t eat that, say this prayer, go to that shul. But we also receive great comfort from engaging in the same activities, in the same way, that our great-great-great and not-so-great grandparents did. More importantly, this joke reminds us that there’s always time to stop and take a moment and center yourself in the universe. Buddhists might set aside a meditation break, Arabs kneel and pray five times a day, Protestants have their four-o’clock gin and tonic. So for a Jew to plant a shmutchka on a Torah scroll when going into a room? Whom does it hurt?

Okay, time for our final joke. Benjy’s been working for the company five years, never had a raise. His wife hocks him and hocks him, so finally, timidly, he goes up to the big boss and says, “Look, I don’t wanna make trouble, but my wife says we need help with the bills, she says I deserve more than I’m making, she says I’m entitled to ask for a raise.”

The boss looks at Benjy and says, “Tell you what: come back tomorrow; I’ll give you the answer.”

“Okay,” says Benjy. “But why not now?”

The boss says, “I have to ask my wife.”

If you are married, I do not have to explain this joke. If you are not married: please, go out and live a little for the rest of us!

Meanwhile, the rest of us will regale ourselves with jokes, and start the new year with a spring in our step and a wiggle in our payes. And may we be blessed with that luxury for just another 51 weeks.

This has been a Rabbinical Reflection from Rabbi Sol Solomon, Temple Sons of Bitches, in Great Neck, New York.

(c) 2018 TotalTheater. All rights reserved.



Rabbi Sol Solomon’s Rabbinical Reflection #152 (1/1/18): Farewell 2017

Airs Dec. 31, 2017 on Dave’s Gone By. Youtube:

Shalom Dammit! This is Rabbi Sol Solomon with a Rabbinical Reflection for the week of January 1, 2018.

Hard to believe, but the tumultuous, ridiculous year of 2017, or, as I like to call it, 5777-5778, is coming to an end. We’ve made it through 365 days without a nuclear war, an ice age, and a new Renny Harlin film, so why grouse?

As I did last year, I have chosen to summarize the events of the past annum in a poetical-artistical form, so I hope you will bear with me as we bid shalom to the current year and, well, shalom to the next. Seriously, whoever invented Hebrew really dropped the ball on word coinage. Anyhoo, here goes:

`Twas the night before New Year’s and throughout this great land,
Americans took about all they could stand

The country was split between blue states and red
And folks on each side wished the other side dead

The Democrats never imagined they’d lose
To a man who refers to the truth as “fake news”

A man who will speak without filters or grace
Though he could not repeal and he could not replace

And so, onto migrants Trump’s temper did fall
But Mexico said, “We won’t pay for your wall!”

“Now, folks,” said The Donald, “I’m just getting warm!
I’ll huff and I’ll puff and I’ll do tax reform!”

And just before Christmas, the bill it did pass.
It’s great for the rich, not the poor and middle-class.

The stock market soared, the jobless claims fell
And still we all feel like we’re going to hell

Big hurricanes drowned with their winds and their waves
And statues came down `cause their subjects owned slaves

The national anthem brought teams to their knees
While Hollywood drowned in an ocean of sleaze

Oh Spacey, oh Keillor, oh Lauer, oh Franken
A few should get jailtime, the others a spankin’

The Democrats grinned when Fox News canned O’Reilly
Till the axe fell on Schwartz, Hockenberry, and Smiley

And suddenly hashtags were filled with “Me Toos”
Against a whole passel of rich, horny Jews

Yet Hollywood shlock remained vegetative
“Star Wars” 26 – how innovative!

But at least cinema took our minds off our woes
Prince Harry did, too, when he chose to propose

But still there were shootings by Muslims and crazies
With Jason Aldean fans all pushing up daisies

Now, that Vegas massacre was not by a Muslim
But they sure got mad at a Jewish Jerus’lem

And speaking of mad, how about North Korea
Which seems like it’s ready to start World War Threea

The pundits were urging our chief to stay calm
While Rocket Man threatened to liquidate Guam

But Trump was no Scrooge, no fiend out of Dickens
Why, he tossed paper towels at wet Puerto Ricans

He railed against Clinton, he’s threatening DACA
He kisses hot women but won’t use Binaca

He seated Neil Gorsuch upon the high court
To make it much harder for girls to abort

He praised Neo-Nazis so white folks were mollified
And all his appointees were ultra-unqualified

That said, he bombed Syria for murder by gas
So why does he Tweet and kiss Putin’s ass?

O.J.’s a free man until his next trial
And Mary Tyler Moore turned off her smile

This year we lost Domino, Berry, and Petty
And Allman and Cassidy and enough already.

2018 is just up ahead
With midterm elections to fill us with dread

The Winter Olympics will bore us with thrills
So doctors, please don’t ban our opioid pills

We’ll need them to get through each day and each night
Happy New Year to all, and to all a “La-La-Land.” I mean, “Moonlight!”

This has been a Rabbinical Reflection from Rabbi Sol Solomon, Temple Sons of Bitches, in Great Neck, New York. Shana Tovah!

(c) 2017 TotalTheater. All rights reserved.

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Rabbi Sol Solomon’s Rabbinical Reflection #151 (12/24/17) – Jerusalem

Rabbi Sol Solomon’s Rabbinical Reflection #151 (12/24/17) –  Jerusalem

Airs Dec. 23, 2017 on Dave’s Gone By.  Youtube:

Shalom Dammit!  This is Rabbi Sol Solomon with a Rabbinical Reflection for the week of December 24, 2017.

When you think of Israel, what’s the first place that comes to mind? Haifa? Jaffa? Ramat Gan? No, shlemiel, we think of Jerusalem. The holy city. Home of the ancient temple and the Wailing Wall. The place Jews have lived and worshipped for centuries. The site of both the Israeli Parliament and the Holocaust Museum, not to mention the markets, the Old City, the zoo, and my retired gastroenterologist. All are part of the Jewish fabric of this Jewish city in the Jewish state of Israel.

Did I say Jewish? Goddamn right, I did. Israel, the itty-bitty country that has been the unofficial Jewish homeland for 5,000 years and the official one since 1948, has a capital, and that capital is Jerusalem. Bill Clinton said it, Dubya Bush said it, Obama said it. Donald Trump said it but, unlike the others, acted upon it. And of course, the left wing goes into an orgy of self-righteous, ignorant misery. Many among them are self-hating Jews who won’t be happy until the Arabs push us into the Dead Sea. Or, as I’m sure the Muslims would prefer, push us into the sea, dead.

But here’s an example. If the governor of New York State wants to move the capital from Albany to Rochester, is it a big deal? No. It’s still New York. If Colorado wants to move its capital from Denver to Fort Collins—big whoop. The same goes for Israel. If the United States wants to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, why not? Jerusalem is not occupied, it’s not rented, it’s not on a 100-year lease; it’s a city in the Jewish homeland just like Paris is for France, like Rome is for Italy, like the Candy Kingdom was for the Land of Ooo. We can all despise Kim Jong Un and wish him dead and disarmed, but even then, we don’t tell him the capital of North Korea shouldn’t be in Pyongyang.

Hostile Arab nations and ignorant assuagers of terrorists have no business telling Eretz Yisroel what do with its own land. I can get along great with my next-door neighbor, but she better not tell me how to paint my living room. And she certainly can’t move into my bedroom . . . unless her tits are spectacular. And with all due respect to Mahmoud Abbas, his tits are unimpressive at best.

I have said time and time again on these Rabbinical Reflections, that Israel is a teeny-weeny country, the only land in the world that is specifically earmarked for the tormented Jewish nation. We are surrounded by enemies, and in world history, any place we’ve gone that has been nice to us can turn on a dime—look at Germany, Spain, Russia, CNN. Even the United States, the greatest country in the world and the best second home Jews have ever had, offers no guarantee. With Donald Trump and his half-Jewish family, we’ve got a friendly administration that puts its matzoh where its mouth is and will protect us against the Arafats and Bin Ladens and Al-Assads. But a president lasts four, maybe eight years. And who knows what comes after? Had Jimmy Carter been reelected, he would have cut Israel in half and let the PLO bomb us into Olam HaBah. We all know how well that peanut-picking putz dealt with Muslim extremists.

I have also explained in my sermons, and on my TV program, and in my highly acclaimed easily tour-able stage show that the Arabs own millions of miles of land spread out over 22 countries— not to mention countries in Africa and Asia whose populations are mostly Islamic. So when Palestinians say they have nowhere to go but Gaza or the West Bank or Jerusalem, they’re full of hummus. They could go anywhere if their Arab brothers and sisters would only let them. But no. Palestinians demand the one place they can’t have. And the Arabs send terrorists and lethal commercial airplanes into our country because we refuse to fall onto their carpets and bow before their shariah law.

And for those of you who say that Jerusalem should be an international city, a place for everyone because so many religions have sacred spaces there, I say, sure! Jerusalem already IS an international city. When has Israel prevented a Christian from stopping by to retrace Jesus’s mythical childhood and death march? And every year, millions of Muslims peacefully worship at the Dome of the Rock or the Al Aqsa Mosque, or the amazing falafel stand just outside Beit Hanina. And if Israeli police check the Mohammedans’ bags for explosives, wouldn’t you? Turn over Jerusalem, or half of Jerusalem, to the Palestinians, and within one generation, mark my word (or my many words), the place will be off-limits to outsiders, not to mention dangerous and probably mixed up in some Arab civil war.

So shut up, liberal lokshen heads, and up yours, United Nations. If calling Jerusalem Israel’s capital hurts the so-called peace process, well, the Arabs had 70 years to make nice. Instead they made trouble—all over the world and with no end in sight. 128 countries in the UN General Assembly think America has crossed a line simply by acting on the true, the fair, and the obvious? Fine, let them live without American money for awhile. Next time there’s famine in Bangladesh, or flooding in Indonesia, or a shortage of ladyboy hookers in Thailand, see how much aid they get from Lebanon or Sudan. Maybe they’ll airlift you a scorpion and a hundred Korans.

In the meantime, thank you, Donald Trump, for doing what’s right and what has been right from the beginning. And don’t let Roger Waters, Danny Glover, the aptly named Lupe Fiasco, Emma Thompson, Samantha Bee, and other celebrity know-nothings sway you with their blather. If these Hollywood types were so concerned about partitions, why didn’t they put one in front of Harvey Weinstein’s dick?

Oh, I know. Harvey Weinstein’s Jewish. And I’m not proud of that. But I am proud of our president, and considering that so many other things he and the Republicans have done are stupid, scary, and crazy, I’d call this oasis of sanity— you should pardon the expression—a Christmas miracle.

This has been a Rabbinical Reflection from Rabbi Sol Solomon, Temple Sons of Bitches, in Great Neck, New York, and maybe someday in Yerushalaim shel zahav.

(c) 2017 TotalTheater. All rights reserved.

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Rabbi Sol Solomon’s Rabbinical Reflection #150 (8/20/17) – “On Both Sides”


Airs Aug. 20, 2017 on Dave’s Gone By.  Youtube:

Shalom Dammit!  This is Rabbi Sol Solomon with a Rabbinical Reflection for the week of August 20, 2017.

Nazis are bad. I just thought I’d get that out of the way in case you didn’t know. Nazis are bad. And just so we’re clear, within the realm of Nazis, I also mean the KKK and White Supremacists. Bad, naughty, bad.

See? Wasn’t that easy?

Not for the president. At a time when the United States needed a leader who could spout soothing platitudes about standing up to the bad guys, President Trump painted everyone as bad guys. And then he started saying that some of the bad guys were good guys. In doing so, he’s made himself a pariah even among Republicans who forgave him for seven previous months of crazy.

And what kills me is that much of what Donald Trump said after the Charlottesville slugfest was both defensible and sensible. In his first statement after the event, the President said there’s no place for bigotry and hatred in America, and that we should all unite as one people. I dare anyone besides David Duke and Mel Gibson to disagree with that. And Chuck Schumer, just because disagreeing with Republicans is how he gets his oxygen.

But Trump also wanted to make a point about law and order. Remember: the guy went to a military academy and grabs his ankles every time a general walks by, so for him, a peaceable kingdom has more value than a righteous one. So he said, Look, you had one side showing up for a rally with torches and sticks, and another side meeting them with bats and pepper spray. When they got too close to each other, it was like a Jerry Springer picnic. And Trump was saying, very clearly, that both sides came to rumble. Instead of the Sharks and the Jets, you had the rights and the lefts. If Antifa hadn’t shown up, the alt-right would have had a non-eventful event. But the militant anti-fascists did come, saw a bunch of racists and Jew haters two feet away, and went to town. If you wave a red flag in front of a bull, you better hide your china. Which mixes two metaphors but still makes more sense than Donald Trump’s next speech.

That’s where the orange one doubled down on the douchebags. Two days after reading a prepared statement saying Nazis are bad—took him two days, but he managed it—he tried to re-re-clarify his pronouncements on the mutual violence in Charlottesville. How did he do that? By saying—and I kid you not—that there were good people on both sides. Which means that white supremacists holding confederate and Nazi flags, shouting “Jews will not replace us”—some of them were okay dudes.  And he wonders why even Fox News anchors are having a crisis of conscience. Well, the ones who haven’t been fired for sending dick pics.

Turns out it doesn’t matter who is trying to corral the President—Sean Spicer, John Kelly, the Mooch, that sexy siren Sarah Huckabee—they’re all dealing with a man who says the first thing that comes into his head, which is so filled with orange peroxide, there’s no brain left. If there were, he’d realize that what he was trying to say was simple. In Charlottesville, you could divide the situation into two elements: ideology and behavior. One side had an evil ideology; both sides engaged in inappropriate behavior.

I’ll put it another way. Let’s say Trump pushes through his budget next year and cuts meals on wheels for the aged and handicapped. So a million old people march on Washington. Along with  some cripples who roll on Washington. And they protest the cruelty of denying support to those who need it most. And the protestors are so mad, they start bashing young people with their canes and hurling their diapers into the reflecting pool at the Lincoln Memorial. Worst of all, they destroy the ratings of the Hallmark Channel by missing a whole day of “Diagnosis Murder” reruns.

Now, ideologically, these geezers are on the side of the angels—with whom they will be consorting soon enough. They have right on their side. Not alt-right, virtue-right. But behaviorally, they’re wicked, and should be arrested as soon as the first colostomy bag hits the Potomac.

So you see that moral evil can be separated from physical misconduct. A well-spoken Nazi in a suit and tie is still a Nazi. A heart surgeon who speeds through a red light still deserves a ticket. And a President who usually means well can keep doing things that make us want to impeach him.

We’re in for a long national conversation about pulling down statues, taking down blogs, and everyone being fed up. But take heart, America. It’s only 41 more months to the next presidential election. And if we can just manage to stay out of a nuclear war, that’s more than enough time to bounce back from a civil war. Isn’t it?

This has been a Rabbinical Reflection from Rabbi Sol Solomon, Temple Sons of Bitches, in Great Neck, New York.

(c) 2017 TotalTheater. All rights reserved.


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