June 18, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Unanswered Pesach Questions We All Ask, But Not Out Loud

What day of the week does Pesach start, again?—What’s wrong with the vacuum cleaner?—How long has this one pickle been in the back of the fridge?—Why are there so many pens in the minivan?—What if I sold my car for Pesach and just rented one for Chol Hamoed?

How come before Pesach, it’s OK to say that your house is completely Pesachdik for two weeks beforehand, but if I say the same thing two weeks after Pesach, people call child services?—Is the reason Chazal made our kids such an essential part of the Seder so that we don’t just tape their rooms shut and sell them for Pesach?

What day of the week does Pesach start, again?

If my kitchen is 20 feet by 15 feet by 10 feet and has cabinets along two walls, how much foil do I need to buy to cover the entire room if I forget to leave a gap for the doorway?

Which one is Shulchan Orech, and which one is Shulchan Aruch?

How many eggs did we use last Pesach? Should we buy extra to be safe? Is there room in the fridge for that many? Do eggs really need to be refrigerated? Can we put eggs in the freezer?—How long does it take to hard-boil a frozen egg?

Why is hand shmurah matzah so expensive? Isn’t challah also made by hand?—What exactly qualifies as kitniyot, again? What on earth is a legume? And is it pronounced like legroom or like resumé?—Can I get romaine lettuce cheaper if I order it straight from Romania?

Why does my wife keep optimistically buying toothbrushes for Pesach?—What do Haggados have to do with coffee?—Has my kittel been living at the dry cleaner since Yom Kippur?—Hey, it’s our Pesach toothbrushes from last year! Whose is whose?—How old is this potato starch?—What could I make that my son-in-law can actually eat?

Where am I supposed to wash the chametz off my hands if the sinks are Pesachdik?—How do I turn on the bathroom sink with my elbows?—Did I just throw out another peeler?—Did every single food I made today involve the same three ingredients?—When does the guy who owns the pizza shop make Pesach? Is that who Pesach Sheini is for?

Why does every Pesach fun page have a maze where you have to get to the afikoman? Who hides it at the end of a maze? How about a maze where you have to step around everything you took out in the process of cleaning a room while holding a vacuum cleaner?

What day of the week does Pesach start, again?

How do I get this bread to catch fire? No Boy Scout handbook ever advises anyone to start a fire using bread. Should I make a fire the normal way and then just add the bread after?—How does one tell if horseradish has gone bad?—Why do bugs like lettuce so much? I only eat lettuce to lose weight. Do bugs need to lose weight?—How do I tell if this salt water is salty enough? Is there a recipe somewhere?

Do I choose a Haggadah that has a lot of divrei Torah, or one where I don’t have to turn so many pages? Because every time I turn a page, something spills.—This isn’t really a question, but I can’t believe that I bought over 15 dozen eggs and not a single one came broken, but I have six functional matzos.—Why do they make afikoman bags that can’t hold the bigger half of a matzah? Do I have to break it again? Then neither part is bigger.

Can I talk after Urchatz? It feels weird.—Why does my kid, who’s been singing the Ma Nishtana at the top of his lungs for three weeks, suddenly not want to say it at the Seder? Is it because we told him we’re putting him to bed afterward?—Why did everyone look at me when they said “Rasha”?—Did I just sit on the afikoman?—“We cover the matzos.” Wait. How long have these been covered?—How DID we do this last year?—Why couldn’t the rabbi just send home an answer key?

Why does someone have to go to the bathroom after every single paragraph of Maggid? We’ve had one cup of wine!—Why does the Haggadah spend an entire page on each makkah? Don’t they realize how fast we breeze through that, and with wine on our hands?

Is it just me, or was the matzah better last year?—Will I ever swallow this bite of marror?—How do I measure my matzah up against this size chart? My matzah isn’t square.—Why did I make all this food for Shulchan Orech? I must have been really hungry.

What am I supposed to do with the wine in the kos shel Eliyahu after he doesn’t drink all of it? Can I pour it back in the bottle, or will there be germs? Can you get germs from someone who lives forever?—Did he get the vaccine?

Can’t I just buy myself a second kittel, and then use the dirty one for Pesach and the clean one for Yom Kippur? Which one would they bury me in?—How come when I go upstairs after the Seder, I always forget the pillows?—Did we lock the door after Shefoch Chamascha?—Why does everything we’re eating taste like scrambled eggs?—What do I do with all this leftover charoset?

Why am I always starving at 11 p.m. on the third night of Pesach?


Mordechai Schmutter is a freelance writer and a humor columnist for Hamodia and other magazines. He has also published seven books and does stand-up comedy. You can contact him at [email protected].

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