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Those Farshtinkener Pharisees
by Julie Michaelson
01/03/08
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(Author's note: 'farbissoner' is
a person who's never happy - he's
a real 'pill'. A 'knaker' is 'a
big shot' (sarcastic, of course -
a lot of Yiddish is). A 'mumser'
is a rich guy who takes advantage
of people. 'Meshugunah' means
crazy: loco. I think you can figure out
'farshtinkener'; it's kind of a strong
word in Yiddish; I wouldn't call your boss
that, at least face to face!)
_____________________________________
Many of the Jews therefore,
who had come with Mary
and had seen what He did,
believed in Him;
but some of them went
to the Pharisees
and told them what
Jesus had done.
[John 11:45-46]
********************************
"'Never heard of these guys, Lord."

"Who, child."

"THEM: those GUYS!
I never HEARD'a 'em!
They sound like they
were a bunch of farbissoner
farshtinkeners: a herd 'a
knakers, and mumsers."

"WHO, child?"

"The PHARISEES!
I was Jewish my whole life!
I NEVER heard 'a these GUYS;
I mean.....not before I read
THIS stuff."

[PATIENT NOD.]

"It looks like the word,
'Pharaoh'; are they
RELATED?"

[LAUGH!]
"Good thought, My precious."

"I don't understand, Lord.
Who WERE these people:
like, town leaders, or somethin'?"

[PATIENT NOD.
SMILE.]
"SOMETHIN'."

"Well, they just sound
like a bunch of bad guys:
sorta' like The Wicked
Witch of the West
in Wizard'a Oz."

[PATIENT SILENCE.]

"I never HEARD'a the word:
'Pharisee'. And, I went to
HEBREW school for six
indigestive YEARS. I
bet other people think
that if you're Jewish,
you just know what a
'Pharisee' is.
(thoughtful silence)
That's weird."

[SMILE.]

"So, what HAPPENED to'em?
I guess they never made it
to northwest Philly.
Where'd they GO?"

[PATIENT SILENCE.]

"And, the prophets: my
idea of them was always
a bunch 'a CRAZY people.
Nobody liked 'em."

[SOLEMN NOD. SMILE.]

"And, we never talked
about Adam 'n Eve in
synagogue, Lord. I
always got the impression
that they weren't Jewish."

[VERY PATIENT NOD.]

"And, I thought Noah
was from Christian stories, too.
Why d'Ya think that IS?"

[LAUGH]
"It is a mystery, My precious."

"We didn't even START
the Bible, till' Abraham.
And, I never heard 'a
that weird story about
him and Sarah in Egypt.
I guess they didn't
wanna' tell us kids about
THAT one."

[CHUCKLE.]
"I SUPPOSE, child!"

"The Bible started out
with some Christian stories
about the Garden of Eden,
and Rainbow over the Ark........."

[PATIENT NOD.]

".....then went into the Jewish
part with Abraham and that
poor ram, and Moses and his broken
Tablets, Stupid Samson and his girlfriend,
Queen Esther and the Hamantashan cookies,
King David and his slingshot......
and then there was that
strange ending part with those meshugunah
prophets........"

[MORE PATIENT NOD.]

".....and that was it."

[SMILE.]

"I had no idea
what Palm SUNDAY was.....
until last year:
I was about to turn 51."

"I gotta' tell 'Ya, Lord:
this becoming a Christian
stuff is a real eye-opener."

"Yes, My precious.
I know."
*********************************
The next day a great crowd
who had come to the feast
heard that Jesus was coming
to Jerusalem.
So they took branches
of palm trees
and went out to meet Him,
crying, Hosanna!
Blessed is He Who comes
in the name of the Lord,
.......the King of Israel!
[John 12:12-13]
_______________________________
In memory: Mom, who taught me
the word, 'farbissoner'. Oy!











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