The Basherta Bubby
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The Basherta Bubby

In honor of Purim, the Frazzled Housewife has let her alter ego, the Basherta Bubby, take over for the week. This column is purely fiction. FICTION. It is not based on anyone real. Fiction. This column is an exaggeration of the dating lives of very Orthodox Jews. It is a parody. PARODY. If there are any terms that you are not familiar with, please feel free to email the author at banjiari@aol.com. And remember, THIS IS FICTION!!!!!

The AJAT Television Network, All-Jewish-All-the-Time, is proud to announce its spring line-up. Leading its successful prime-time shows is “The Mensch.” This season’s candidate was chosen over hundreds and hundreds of applicants from yeshivas all over the country. These Torah scholars were learners, there were earners, and a select few were learners AND earners. We ruled out any candidates who wore colored shirts, did not have their own davening jackets, or wore brightly colored sox. Black hats were preferred but not required, and no notice was taken of how much the boys’ mothers weighed.

After careful consideration, and many hours spent outside of the “bais” — though making shidduchim is not considered bitul torah (time spent away from learning Torah) — the newest mensch is Reb Shlomo Zalman Gribbenetz. This baal tshuvah had been drafted out of yeshiva league basketball to play for the Chicago Bulls, but felt a pull to learn in the Mir yeshiva. After giving up a $3 million dollar starting salary for the salary only God and learning Torah can provide, Shlomo Zalman decided to leave the freezer, defrost a bit, and start dating. None of the producers are sure why “leaving the freezer” means ready to date, but that’s the way it goes. “Though my shadchan (matchmaker) from Baltimore was opposed to my being on ‘The Mensch,’ I felt it was the best way to see what is really out there,” Gribbenetz told AJAT news correspondent Yossela Rosenglatt.

Reports have come out that shadchans all over the country have been up in arms over “The Mensch” because a true mensch doesn’t watch television.

Here are some episode recaps.

The first outing for Sholomo Zalman was a drive over the George Washington Bridge and Triboro Bridge to pick up some of the future balabusters who were kvelling over the chance to meet their intended. Due to AJAT’s financial constraints, and the fact that the station is owned by a frugal dude from Monsey, Shlomo Zalman saved on tolls by picking up seven girls from Queens and Long Island. One toll, seven dates — now that is smart dating. Since it was just a first date, none of the women were considered “food worthy” yet, Baruch Hashem. Each girl got 20 minutes in the front seat for one-on-one time with Gribbenetz. He was able to assess her level of modesty by how long her skirt was when she sat down, and how long her sleeves were when she reached to put her seatbelt on.

The next test was the radio. If she turned it off, Gribbenetz knew she was in it for the right reasons; she was on the show with the hope of finding true love and making it all the way to the chuppah, with God’s help. If she changed the channel to secular music, she was almost guaranteed not to receive the coveted mezuzah (as AJAT doesn’t believe in spending money on roses). After 20 minutes, they pulled over to daven mincha, and the next girl got in the front. At the end of the date, Shlomo Zalman dropped them each off, but after this date, only three of the girls received mezuzahs for a second date. One of the girls receive a claf inside the mezuzah (again the president of the network certainly was not spending that much money on clafs for every mezuzah, Chas V’Shalom). This meant that she’s entitled to a meal, with one side dish, dessert, and a beverage of her choice. The girls who were clafless were getting a hotel lobby and a water bottle.

The season reaches its climax when Shlomo Zalman has two remaining options and he meets their families. As luck would have it, both girls live in communities that don’t have easy access to kosher food. The girls are given a speed challenge to select, shecht (slaughter), and prepare a shabbes meal in under an hour.

All in all, this season’s “The Mensch” leaves the viewer wishing there were more episodes.

The staff at AJAT wishes all of its viewer (yes, there is only one and it’s Yossele Rosenglatt’s mother) a freilichin purim and a zeese yur — a sweet year.

The Basherta Bubby, who doesn’t like her given name so she changed it to Basherta Bubby (friends call her BB), is originally from Viliamsberg, Brooklyn. Now living in Bergen County, BB is the proud mother of 12 girls. Each of those girls, coincidentally, married a boy named Shlomo.

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