First of all, I have to address something. Several of my (gentle) gentile friends have asked me, “What is the PC way to say that someone is Jewish?” One of my friends decided that he was going to call Jews “Jewish practicing individuals,” but that sounds really bizarre to me.
Here is a snippet from an actual chat on the interwebz…
Friend: would u say it is not pc to use Jew as a proper noun? we are debating it
Me: give me an example
Me: yeah, that sounds a little offensive. either one. why not just call them the weinsteins or whatever
Me: and if the husband was like, who are they, then she might say, you know, that nice jewish family
If you’re trying too hard to be PC, you’re probably doing it wrong. (And I grew up in Orange County, so I’ve encountered EVERY TYPE of doing it wrong. Including… you know, just outright trying to convert me. Not cool.) (I’m talking to you, way-too-many-people-I-went-to-school-with.) (And teachers.)
Okay, intro over.
So the other truck at our office today was the Canter’s truck. Somehow some really delightful Jewish desserts from the truck ended up in our office kitchen, and everybody else had willpower. At the end of the day the black and white cookie was still sitting there, just begging to be tasted.
And a black and white cookie isn’t an ordinary cookie. It’s more of a cake masquerading as a cookie. Behold!
I had a piece. Not the whole thing. Just a respectable (maybe) sliver. And it was sooo good. A little bit lemony, which is a PLUS in my book. Like, honestly, if we’d had these cookies in OC, I might have been converting those Evangelicals to Judaism.
Oh, that’s another thing. I say Joo-dee-ism. A lot of people say Joo-day-ism. Not sure what’s right. But it’s too late for me to change my stripes. (I also might be pronouncing my last name differently than the rest of my family pronounces it? Oh welp.)
I was in a Jewish sorority, and at big celebrations we used to serve black and white cookies… sometimes iced with each girl’s name, if I remember correctly.
I didn’t eat the rugelach (spelled a million different ways, pronounced “rug-ah-luh” or maybe “rugga-lah”), but they bring back fond memories of my childhood. Almost every time somebody came to visit, my dad would run to Ralph’s (yeah, just a regular Ralph’s grocery store) and buy a plastic bucket of rugelach, and usually an Entenmenn’s pound cake– among other delights.
These days we don’t put out quite the spread, but I still remember peeling back the flakey layers of the rugelach, and the big granules of sugar on top. Rugelach represent hospitality. (I think they’re also singular and plural… like “deer.”)
When I was in Israel my tour leaders bought rugelach in a big open-air market in Jerusalem, and we sat around eating them late-night on Shabbat. Israeli rugelach look different.
Or maybe it’s not Israeli vs. American. Just different styles.
And in a strange turn of events, I’m performing in a show tonight… eeeek!!! A comedy sketch show. I have to go pull together a costume. How Catskills of me, right?