May 24, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

In today’s Jewish world, it is not uncommon for singles to seek their soulmates through a formal matchmaking process. Candidates often fill out long, detailed questionnaires on a variety of topics with the hope that perfectly matching answers will produce the perfect match. There is both an art and science to identifying critical commonalities and deal-breaking dissimilarities. Mathematical formulas alone will not suffice. In other words, you will not find your future spouse using the Pythagorean theorem.

In some cases, matchmaking questionnaires are relatively superficial and lack meaningful interrogation. Ideally, matching-making questionnaires should dig deep by seeking input on issues that can truly be game-changers. By way of example only, the following list of questions might help singles to more efficiently find their basherts or at least weed out the unredeemable:

1. At a wedding, are you the kind of person who barges into the center circle to dance with the chatan or kallah just for the attention and camera time, even though you clearly are more of a peripheral friend who barely made the invite list?

2. At a bar mitzvah, when candy is being thrown at the bar mitzvah boy, do you surreptitiously hurl your candy at your in-shul enemies to settle a score or further a grudge?

3. At a bris, are you the kind of person who incessantly makes annoying and/or inappropriate circumcision-related puns like (i) “These bagels are cut above the rest,” (ii) “Make sure you give the mohel a tip” and (iii) “Foreskin and seven years ago, our fathers….”?

4. On Purim, do you show up to the Megillah reading dressed (i) in your usual garb but wearing a sign that says: “My Doppelgänger,” (ii) in a glass bottle labeled “Vash-Tea,” (iii) as a hamantaschen that has unequal sides and with a sign that says: “I’m Being Obtuse”?

5. On Chanukah, do you travel all the way to Scotland just to take a selfie in front of Loch Ness and then post it on social media with the hashtag #LochNessGadolHayaPo?

6. At a Passover Seder, do you carefully count the number of seats at the table and then strategically place yourself in a seat that is least likely to be assigned the reading of “The Rasha” paragraph?

Other areas of examination should include culinary preferences:

7. How viscous do you like your cholent? Do you want to eat it with a fork, spoon or funnel?

8. How strong do you like your horseradish? Do you want just a little heat or do you essentially want nasal napalm?

9. How do you like your borscht? Beet red or with enough sour cream to give it that alla vodka appearance?

10. How do you like your matzah balls? Do you want pillowy perfection or the type that could be played on the back nine?

On the road to finding your true love, there are plenty of other topics that should be fair game:

11. Do you want to live close to your relatives or do you yearn for witness protection-like solitude?

12. How many children do you want? Enough so that you struggle to remember their names or at least enough to build a sukkah in record-breaking time?

13. Do you want to vacation only where other families in your community are vacationing or are you open to meeting new people?

14. Do you believe that the term “Modern Orthodox” actually means “Less Orthodox” or “Conveniently Orthodox”?

15. Was your highest athletic achievement accomplished in sleepaway camp and in a game that to this day is still the subject of intense controversy?

16. Is a long shabbos nap essential to maintaining your circadian rhythm? Is being invited out for a shabbos meal essential to maintaining your social standing?

17. At a shiva house, is your top priority to sit and sincerely listen to the mourners or to simply make sure that the mourners see you there? Once the mourners make eye contact with you, do you feel you can exit without a backlash or, for purposes of appearances, must you still work your way up to the front row?

18. Do you think that Tu B’shvat is on the second day of the month? Do you think that Pesach Sheni is the second day of the holiday? Do you think that Adar Bet is a casino term?

19. Do you think that the shuk in Jerusalem is sometimes so chaotic and turbulent that it should be more aptly named “The Shook”?

20. Do you constantly talk about making aliyah but then never actually do it even though nothing is stopping you other than inertia?

Final thought: Identifying your bashert is like identifying obscenity, that is, you’ll know it when you see it.

Send comments or criticism to [email protected].

By Jon Kranz

 

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