Monday, February 27, 2006

God, I wish I were Jewish

Let me tell you something: I LOVE the Jewish people. I know, I know--technically this is a stereotype, but it's a good stereotype, so I'll continue.

When I think of my top five favorite television programs--Seinfeld, Scrubs, Arrested Development, Curb Your Enthusiasm, and 24--at least three of them prominently feature a Jewish main character (Jerry Seinfeld, Zach Braff, Larry David). Seinfeld also features Jason Alexander, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Jerry Stiller, Estelle Harris, while Curb includes Jeff Garlin, Susie Essman, Richard Lewis along with David. Arrested Development has Jeffrey Tambor, Jessica Walter, David Cross, each of which is indispensible to the show (or WAS!), as well as creator Mitchell Hurwitz. Actually, upon further digging, the second second assistant director for 24 is named Mark Rabinowitz, which I'm assuming is Jewish, as well as the recurring characters (for a while, at least) of Jonathan Ahdout, Sara Gilbert, and Mia Kirshner.

Is this a coinicidence? No, it's not. There's just something about the Jewish sense of humor that does it for me. These people are FUNNY, like no other. They're always "making observations" in a self-deprecating, there's-no-way-we'll-ever-find-out-the-answer-but-I'll-ask-anyway sort of way. I LOVE it.

I always think of that old Jewish guy in "The Pez Dispenser" episode of Seinfeld. At first he says: "Sure, we used to [have interventions] when one of our polar bears stopped coming. We would go to his house and say, "'What, you don't want to be a polar bear anymore? It's too cold for you?'" I ALWAYS crack up at that. But then he tells his kangaroo joke: "The male kangaroo doesn't have a pouch, only the female has it. The male has pouch envy. I have things to carry too--at least give me a pocket." It's not much if you just read it, but this is possibly one of the funniest lines in all of Seinfeld if it's delivered properly. I suppose it's all in the timing.

You can't tell me you don't know what I'm talking about. Without the Jewish sense of humor, I wouldn't watch television. Except for Skating with Celebrities.

11 comments:

Baal Teshuva Benny said...

Doesn't eveybody wish they were jewish.

Cristina Cordova said...

Well, they ARE, after all, the chosen ones.

Sue Ellen Mischke said...

Here's something about me you probably don't know- I'm 1/8 Jewish. Can't you tell- the hair, the nose, the self-deprication. I can make these sweeping stereoptypes because I am 1/8 Jewish- anyone else makes these generalizations and I'm going to kick some ass.

Lizzie said...

Of course Jewish people are funny. Why do you think Watley converted?

(That episode was on the other night and has one of my all-time favorite Seinfeld lines:

Jerry: I think he may have converted to Judaism for the jokes.

Priest: And this offends you as a Jewish man?

Jerry: No, it offends me as a comedian!)

debbiecakes said...

As a Jew, I'm in good company, I must say.

You know Southie, it's our sense of humor that's sustained as a people for over 3,000 years....what's that? 5,000 you say? Even better!

Now give me a schtikkel of flouride.

Anonymous said...

You're judging the jewish people by the jews you see on tv. In that case of course you love the jews since the media is controlled by them.

Rosie said...

I wish I were Jewish. I wanna go to temple, and have Hannukah and live in Elsternwick.

(Elsternwick is a big Jewish community in Melbourne, Australia.
It has big leafy oak trees, and cake shops, and ladies with platinum blonde perms and shiny tracksuits. *loves it*)

Anonymous said...

I would most wholeheartedly agree with you on this one! Perhaps it is my Irish heritage, and the fact that the Irish love dark humor. I am still waiting for my imperfect Jewish man to find me (tough in a town such as Cincinnati!)

I couldn't get through this life without laughing (hard) at the human condition. It's too tragic!

Susie Essman is my hero!

Anonymous said...

i'm glad i'm not jewish because i dislike top hats

Anonymous said...

The last thing most people want to be is Jewish. Ewwwww!

Anonymous said...

No the last thing most people want is to be prejudice.

I wish I was. I was raised in an agnostic family (or just non-practicing Southern Baptist) and hold a healthy respect for all religions, but I admit Judaism has always been fascinating to me. And not just he religion but the culture as well.