By Yenta Punker
When I am out in a mixed bunch of Reform and Conservative Heebsters, the dinning can get tricky. What ultimately bothers me is that it’s no one’s business who puts what in their mouths. So, I decided we need instructions so people can shut the hell up.
If you are strict in your Halacha, you’re not eating at non-kosher restaurants anyway and so surely you can ignore this rant. This loud and clear beat down is for the rest of you who either do something or nothing at all.
For all of you who do nothing, be kind to those who do. Eat what you want; the avayrah (sin) is yours if you even believe that you’re committing one.
For those of you who do “something” which makes you feel as though you’re keeping kosher, my first advice is to know you’ll be educating people who don’t understand your ways. You’ve surrounded yourself in a social abyss of people who aren’t like you. Rock on for being comfortable! Just know, they may not be comfortable with anything remotely religious. That’s okay, be tolerant. Don’t judge people who deal with the halacha differently than you. It’s not a contest between you and them; it’s an expression of your faith to Hashem. Don’t make people at the table who do “nothing” feel like crap either. It’s not a way to win friends and surely it won’t make them feel like starting something new either. Remember, when you started to keep kosher, someone taught you or you had to read up.
As Jews we love food. Heck, when we’re serious about tuvah (repentance) we even give it up. The most important thing you can do for another Jew is welcome them. Next time you’re sitting around so random table and having a caloric haven amongst you… stop, order what you want, and smile to the person who just ordered what you would have never dared. It’s a teachable moment if someone wants to be taught, but sometimes a nishama (spirt) can speak for itself. Lets eat!