this week’s New Yorker:
Shouts & Murmurs
by Paul Rudnick April 9, 2012
At every Passover Seder, the youngest child asks the Four Questions, including “Why is this night different from all other nights?” and “On all other nights, we eat either sitting or reclining, but why on this night do we recline?” In order to make this year’s Seders more user-friendly, the United Council on Reform Judaism has suggested adding the following bonus questions:
1. Is the fact that Gwyneth Paltrow is only half Jewish really a blessing in disguise?
2. Was there anyone in the Talmud named Madison?
3. If Lucky Charms were a Jewish cereal, would the box have a picture of Rahm Emanuel?
4. In a Jewish family, isn’t “tiger mother” just another term for “amateur”?
5. If Harry Potter were Jewish, wouldn’t he have gone to a better school?
6. Why does Kindle sound like a Yiddish word for an especially adorable grandchild?
7. If your daughter married a chiropractor, would you even bother telling anyone?
8. If your daughter were a chiropractor, would you always add the words “to the stars”?
9. When Elena Kagan was sworn in as a Supreme Court Justice, did her mother murmur, “Maybe she’ll meet someone”?
10. Why do even Gentile hipsters dress like Yentl?
11. When that computer beat those two human contestants on “Jeopardy!,” did Alex Trebek comment, “Well, of course-it’s Jewish”?
12. If there were a reality show called “Jersey Shul,” in which the entire cast was made up of Orthodox Jews, would they spend all their time working out,
tanning, and waiting for the Messiah?
13. If, for the sake of world peace, Passover and Easter could be combined, would Jesus be resurrected and announce, “I came back for the buffet”?
14. Are the Zuckerbergs now thrilled that Mark never went outside and got some fresh air?
15. If a Jewish astronaut had been the first man on the moon, would he have said, “That’s one small step for a man, and there’s parking”?
16. Every time Jerry Seinfeld appears as a guest on Jon Stewart’s show, does a Jewish angel sigh happily and feel a little bloated?
17. When you proudly tell your family that your beloved daughter is a lesbian rabbi, is there any way to stop Aunt Henny from exclaiming, “But she’s so pretty!”?
18. If Moses’ mother met Jesus’ mother and said, “My son received the Ten Commandments,” would Jesus’ mother then say, “Well, my son sacrificed himself for the sins of all humankind”? And then would Moses’ mother take a long pause and say, “But at least Moses calls”?