Friday, February 02, 2007
So last night I had a date with my brother at a bar. We're sitting outside talking, and there were loud drunksters nearby. Every other word was "F this and F that." I called them over and smiled. "What are your names?" They told me. "Chad and Amanda, you have such sweet mouths. How could you let those words come out?"
The truth is, I wanted to say, "G-d is here, too." But they were drunk, so I didn't go there.
Well, Amanda had my number good. She narrowed her eyes at me. "You're religious, aren't you? Aren't you, right? What are you?" I smiled and confessed. "I knew it!" she crowed. "I knew by what you're wearing. You know, the hair, the skirt - everything." She waved her hands around like Vanna White showcasing a refrigerator.
"So why are you here?" she accused. "You don't belong here. This is a bar, full of drunken souls." (Yes, she actually said "drunken souls.") "Why are you bringing G-d to this place? You expect people to be nice here, but people don't talk nice in bars. You can't be all religious and bring G-d here and expect people to believe like you." My brother pointed out that I didn't mention G-d at all - she brought Him up. But Amanda wouldn't hear it. She kept pointing at me, saying, "No, it was her."
She's right, I thought - what am I doing here? I'm a frum Jew in a seedy bar. I don't belong here. Why are you bringing G-d to this place? Well, I mused - I guess that's why I'm here! Her words shouted into my heart. I felt on a deep level she communicated, "You're a Jew - do your job." It reminded me of a profound thing I heard in the name of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach:
The whole world is waiting for Jews to be Jews.