An invitation to add your own story

Most people I know have a few stories of their childhood tucked away deep inside their pockets. With a little coaxing, (usually over a beer or two,) they pull them out and share them. Often I’ve heard a friend say, “I had completely forgotten that story.” Yet, there it was, just waiting to be picked up and held for a while. Once told, a common bond unites the storyteller and the listener to another place and time of misspent youth.

I encourage you to dig deep in your own pockets, pull out a childhood story, dust it off and send it to this blog.


One thought on “An invitation to add your own story


    The Torah is really a “how-to” book for living a Jewish life in a most righteous manner and it even teaches how a Jewish person must behave in the business world. One concept is that we are commanded to provide a loan to another Jewish person in true need and we are not allowed to charge interest or profit from this loan in any manner. Additionally, we’re not allowed to demand repayment, although it is a good deed to pay back all loans to make the giving party “whole” again.

    My dad grew up in a strictly conservative Jewish home and ours was a bit more on the reformed side. We drove to the synagogue on Saturday morning when the more observant Jews walked. (You’re not supposed to operate machinery on the Sabbath.)

    So it came to be that an orthodox Jewish lawyer living down the street from us owed my father, a physician, a sum of money from accident patients my father treated. For years, the lawyer hadn’t made any effort to pay my dad back from the money the lawyer made from the accident settlements. Naturally, this orthodox Jewish lawyer and his family walked to synagogue on Saturday morning, passing our house at the same time like clockwork.

    My father, having been raised to honor the Torah, felt he could not keep asking the lawyer to pay so he devised what I thought was a very funny way to gain some measure of completeness with this negligent attorney.

    My job on Saturday morning was to get dressed for services and then look out our side window and report when I saw the attorney and his family coming. At that moment, my dad would herd us all in his 1967 Chrysler Newport Custom Sedan for the Sabbath’s main event. At the precise moment that the attorney + family were midpoint in front of our home, my dad would back out of the garage, open his window and ask, “Sid, would you like a ride to Synagogue?”

    The look on the lawyer’s face was priceless and made us laugh for most of the drive to the synagogue. He really wanted to accept the ride but just couldn’t do it because it was the Sabbath. He was so spiritually torn by the weekly encounter. But alas, he never did pay my dad back for the work, we got less and less laughter from the joke and the whole affair eventually got filed under “Funny Things My Dad Did/Judaism” in the back of my mind.

    The moral of the story is not an eye for an eye or what goes around, comes around. In my mind it was nothing like that. It was more like something I haven’t yet found in the Torah. If someone owes you money or services, do not get angry or resentful about it. Instead, find the humor and laughter just begging to come out of it as soon as possible.

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