A Sincere Apology

I owe you guys an apology.

If you’re reading this, then you’re awesome. You keep coming back, trusting me to put up fresh, interesting content, and  I have been letting you down recently. And, unfortunately, I am about to let you down even more.

A couple of years ago I tried writing a VBA program  to  simulate the dating process. When I ran my code, it got caught in an infinite loop. Taking this as a stamp of realism, I abandoned the virtual dating code and went back to reality’s dating code.  I was living in the infinite loop, going out with new guys every few months on an endless reel of first and second dates.

Well, recently, a software developer offered to help me drop out of the loop.

And I accepted.

This makes me an NEF, the butt of my own jokes, and no longer suitable to author this blog. With this post, I tender my resignation, effective immediately. Reposts will continue regularly until they reach today’s date. I sincerely apologize to everyone who is disappointed or inconvenienced in any way and wish you all the best.

PS: Since you are doubtless wondering: Blogging is both bad and good for shidduchim. Sometimes for the same shidduch.

PPS: And sometimes 42 really is the answer.

Solve All Your Problems in One Man

So this is a true story.

A woman moved to Ofakim. She had a job, she found an apartment, she went to shul, she got invited out for a meal.

At the meal, her hostess kindly inquired how she was adjusting, and she chatted a bit about some of the challenges of moving to a small, hot town in the south of Israel when you grew up in Milwaukee.

But every time she’d mention something, her host would interject, “Nu? All she needs is a good shidduch and everything will be fine.”

So, think, “Ulpan is great, but I still have trouble with some of the technical jargon for my job.”

“Nu? All she needs is a good shidduch and everything will be fine.”

“Not having Sundays is challenging. When do you do laundry and groceries?”

“Nu! What’s the problem? You need a good shidduch!”

“Last night the cats yowled under my window for 7 hours straight and I didn’t get any sleep.”

“What’s the problem? You need to get married!”

Doubtless, he thought he was being adorable. In fact, he was being annoying and condescending, minimizing everything she said by claiming life would be perfect if only she had a man.

Personally, I applaud her for making a big and brave move on her own — yes, all alone without a man — and I’m confident she’ll be able to handle everything her new town throws her way — on her own. 

And if she had a guy to do the laundry, well, that would just be icing.

Congrats to NEF #21

Okay, I made that number up. I don’t know what number she is. But she deserves a special public congratulations, because according to her high school teacher, she wasn’t ever supposed to get engaged.

You know how bais yaakov teachers roll. It’s all “Do what I say or you’ll never get married!” Heck, I had a Tefillah teacher in 12th grade who told us she got a shidduch call about a girl who didn’t pay attention in Tefillah class and, well, “I just couldn’t think of anything nice to say about her.”

I can’t think of anything nice to say about that teacher.

So, moving right along. NEF #21 really wanted to go to Michlala in Israel to study for a year. But her teacher told her that if she didn’t go to a bais yaakov seminary, nobody would ever want to date her.

NEF thought about that a bit. She realized that, in fact, people who study in Michlala do not comprise the entirety of the “shidduch crisis” pool. Moreover, if she went to a bais yaakov seminary, she’d probably wind up dating the wrong kind of people. The type who think like her teacher, perhaps. So she went to Michlala, learned a lot, had a great year, and now, guess what? She’s engaged!

Thank You, Avigail

Good4 just handed me an article from the January 28, 2015 Ami magazine. It’s written by Avigail Rabin and the pull quote, in a bright aquamarine, is “I get the impression that I’m supposed to walk around in a wooden barrel, indoors, devoid of jewelry, until I am married.”

Naturally, I was intrigued. It took me about 45 seconds to devour the entire forum article, which was brilliant. While all rights belong to Ami, here are the first two paragraphs:

I don’t consider myself “a single.” I am very much the same person I was in fourth grade, in twelfth grade, at the age of 21, and last year. Me. Me who has not yet met Mr. Right, who is presumably out there somewhere, wondering where in the world I am and when I’ll be showing up. Why am I sharing this with absolute strangers? Because I’ve read so many perspectives on me and my supposed life and feelings on these pages and others by parents, shadchanim, mental health professionals, and even other singles, and not one of them has expressed my viewpoint. So here it is.

Last week I went shopping and came home with a beautiful Shabbos outfit. I teach a full day, tutor after school, and while I try to save responsibly for the future, I do occasionally shop. My mother said, “Wow, that looks amazing on you! Why don’t you put it aside for your sheva brochos?” Never mind that my last date was (a) uninspiring and (b) seven weeks ago. The same week I told a coworker I had just booked a flight to Eretz Yisroel for midwinter vacation. She replied, “Don’t go now; put it off and the first bein hazmanim that you’re married!” Then last summer, when I bought myself some really nice earrings in Florida with one of my als0-waiting friends, my grandmother, shaking her head in disappointment, wondered, “What’s the chasan going to buy you?”

Avigail, I officially love you. If you can write like this twice a week, and are so inclined, you can have my URL.