Sunday, October 20, 2019

Netanyahu Gives Visiting Pompeo a Tour of His Sukkah


On Friday, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visited Israel and the home of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. In a joint statement they reaffirmed the strong close relationship between the two countries.

At the end of the meeting, Netanyahu and US ambassador David Friedman showed Pompeo the residence’s sukkah, or temporary booth, built for the Sukkot holiday. “Since you’re visiting here on the holiday of Sukkot, we sit in the sukkah during the Feast of Tabernacles. We remember what it was like when we didn’t have a permanent home,” said Netanyahu. 

 “We sit here to have our family meals and visitors sit here in the sukkah.” “When you put the schach on the top, it is supposed to be porous enough so that you can see the stars. One problem is what do you do when it rains? The answer is you go in.” “This is a typical sukkah, and my kids used to draw drawings for it.”

Tonight and Monday we celebrate the holiday of Shemini Atzeret followed by Simchat Torah on Tuesday. We'll be back with more Jewish Humor Central postings on Wednesday.

Chag Sameach! 

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Friday, October 18, 2019

Welcoming Shabbat with Ana B'koach by Merav Brenner and the Hallel Chorus


This week we welcome Shabbat with Ana b'Koach, a liturgical poem from the Kabbalat Shabbat service that appears in the siddur just before Lecha Dodi. It's a Kabbalistic prayer composed by Rav Nehunia Ben Hakannah.

Known as the 42-letter Name of God, Ana b'Koach is a unique formula built of 42 letters written in seven sentences of six words each. Each of the seven sentences correspond to the seven days of the week, seven specific angels, and to a particular heavenly body. The letters that make up Ana beKo'ach are encoded within the first 42 letters of the book of Genesis.

The kabbalists explain that this combination of letters takes us back to the time of Creation, and each time we meditate on a particular sequence, we return to the original uncorrupted energy that built the world. By performing the Ana beKo'ach meditation, we enrich our lives with unadulterated spiritual Light and positive energy.

This version of Ana b'Koach is sung by Hallel, an Israeli women's chorus led by Merav Brenner. The Hebrew text and translation appear below the video.

Enjoy, and Shabbat shalom! 

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Thursday, October 17, 2019

Throwback Thursday Comedy Special: Don Rickles at His Audience-Insulting Best


On this Throwback Thursday let's go back to December, 12, 1972 when Don Rickles had fun with a TV audience, walking up the aisle and finding willing and unwilling subjects to poke fun at.

Don Rickles was one of comedy’s most famous funnymen. For over 55 years he appeared in top showrooms and concert halls throughout the world. He was regarded among the world’s top entertainers. Rickles earned the nicknames “The Merchant of Venom” and “Mr. Warmth” (coined affectionately by Johnny Carson) for his style of humor in which he poked fun at people of all ethnicities and walks of life. 

Rickles’ style was never mean-spirited—it was all just part of the act. In reality, most knew him to be quite genial and pleasant. It has been said that being “insulted” by Rickles is like “wearing a badge of honor.” This is classic television comedy, perfect for fans of Dean Martin Celebrity Roasts, The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, The Dean Martin Variety Show, and other great comedy. 

Rickles was one of the last of the great old-school comedians. This vintage segmeint from his 1972 special show him at his original, insulting best!

Enjoy! 

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#Throwback Thursday    #TBT

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Origins of Jewish Comedy Explored on PBS by Professor Jeremy Dauber


In a TV interview on the PBS show Metro Focus, host Jack Ford has a conversation with Jeremy Dauber, Columbia professor and author of the book Jewish Comedy: A Serious History.

The interview touches on an analysis of Jewish humor -- its nature, its development, and its vital role throughout Jewish history. Dauber's book contains plenty of jokes to illustrate the rich tradition of Jewish humor.

Dauber explains how humor has sustained the Jewish people, even through the harshest of times. Jewish comedy is not just an American phenomenon -- it goes all the way back to the Bible.

Enjoy!

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Sunday, October 13, 2019

Sukkot is Here - Get Ready to Shake Your Lulav with Rebbetzin Tap!


With Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur in the rear view mirror, Sukkot is suddenly here. Starting tonight, we'll be spending lots of time in the Sukkah --eating, drinking, and spending special time with family and friends. Some of us may also be sleeping in the Sukkah, weather permitting.

As we head into a seven day period of saying special blessings while holding the lulav, etrog, myrtle and willow branches together and giving them a good shake, let's get the holiday off to a good start with Rebbetzin Tap and her entourage.

Rebbetzin Tap is Kerry Bar-Cohn, the only female chiropractor in Ramat Beit Shemesh near Jerusalem, where she lives with her husband David and four sons.
 
But that's only her day job. As "Rebbetzin Tap," she produces music and dance DVDs for children, as well as online courses and a plethora of YouTube videos, whose goal is to emphasize the “joy” component in Judaism and in life, and to teach self-esteem and empowerment.

Why Rebbetzin Tap? Because tap dancing is part of all her music videos.
She has a background in stage performance, first as a child, then attending the High School of Performing Arts in New York, and subsequently returning to performance ten years ago after making aliyah.

We'll be taking tomorrow and Tuesday off to celebrate Sukkot, and we'll be back with our usual Jewish Humor Central mix on Wednesday.

Chag Sameach!

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Friday, October 11, 2019

Welcoming Shabbat with Lecha Dodi at a Simon and Garfunkel Shabbat in Georgia



Temple Kol Emeth is a Reform synagogue in Marietta, Georgia. Last month they featured a Simon and Garfunkel Shabbat, where they set most of the traditional Shabbat melodies to tunes made famous by the folk duo.

Today we're posting one of the Kabbalat Shabbat songs, Lecha Dodi, set to the music of Scarborough Fair, and performed by the Ahavat Torah Band, led by Cantor Blake Singer.

Singer has been the Cantorial Soloist for Temple Kol Emeth since 1986. His folk-style music for guitar and voice are used during worship services and lifecycle events. Blake incorporates a balanced blend of music into the worship experience, drawing from a wide variety of music genres that include traditional, Hassidic, camp, folk, country and rock & roll.

Enjoy, and Shabbat shalom!

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Thursday, October 10, 2019

Throwback Thursday Comedy Special: Buddy Hackett on the Johnny Carson Show in 1978



We thought that we had run out of Buddy Hackett videos and were pleasantly surprised to find another batch of Buddy's appearances on the Johnny Carson Tonight Show. It's rare to find a Hackett video these days, especially one that's clean.

So go back with us 41 years to 1978 when Buddy made one of his visits to Carson's late night show.

In this episode, Buddy tells stories about an unusual treatment for severe headache pain and his new vegetarian diet.

Enjoy!

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#Throwback Thursday    #TBT

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

An Amazingly Appetizing Yom Kippur Recipe from London's J-TV



J-TV: The Global Jewish Channel is based in London. It features weekly segments on Jewish wisdom, current affairs and entertainment. 

This year they've cooked up an amazingly appetizing recipe for Yom Kippur. There aren't many recipes for this fast day, but here's one you'll be sure to try.

We'll be attending synagogue services tonight and tomorrow, but we'll be back on Thursday with our usual mix at Jewish Humor Central.

Wishing you an easy and meaningful fast.

G'mar Chatimah Tovah!

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Monday, October 7, 2019

Welcoming Yom Kippur with Avinu Malkeinu by the Budapest Sabbathsong Klezmer Band


Yes, we know it's another Monday, and that usually means it's time for another Joke to Start the Week. But we're in the midst of a month of Jewish holidays that started with Rosh Hashanah and continues with Yom Kippur, Sukkot, Shemini Atzeret and Simchat Torah.

So we're holding off with the weekly jokes until the Monday after the holidays, and instead bringing you content that's more appropriate for this month.

Yesterday we posted a beautiful rendition of Hava Nagila by the Budapest-based Sabbathsong Klezmer Band. Today we're posting their version of Avinu Malkeinu as we prepare for Yom Kippur.

Wishing you an easy and meaningful day of prayer and fasting.

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Sunday, October 6, 2019

Hava Nagila Around the World - Sabbathsong Klezmer Band in Budapest Concert



One of the joys of posting videos on Jewish Humor Central is discovering new versions of traditional Jewish and Hebrew songs as they are performed around the world, often in unexpected places.

Since we started Jewish Humor Central ten years ago we have posted 80 different versions of Hava Nagila. The song has shown up in many countries, including some unexpected ones (Scroll down the left column on this page and click on "Hava Nagila" in the Keywords list and you'll see what we mean.)

Today we're posting a version of Hava Nagila that was performed at the 2019 New Year's Concert in Budapest, Hungary by the Sabbathsong Klezmer Band.

As Tamas Masa, founder of the group, explains on its website,
Our band started in 1998 at the closing ceremony of Chief Rabbi László Deutsch in a small synagogue in Budapest, where we performed our beloved Israeli songs in gratitude. The chief rabbi then said a prophecy in the book of Isaiah (Isaiah) that "comfort, comfort my people ...", which has been accompanying our actions ever since, is said to be the foundation of our work.
In our repertoire, besides the Eastern European klezmer, Yiddish and Israeli traditional and. modern songs and dances also play an important role. Our aim, beyond a high-level interpretation of the melodies of Judaism, is to return to the spiritual root and source of these songs, the reality of the Bible. That's why we got the slogan: "More than klezmer."
Enjoy!

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