The Bad for Shidduchim Club

Wouldn’t it be inspiring to step out from under the wedding canopy and announce to all the singles with the bittersweet smiles: “Fear not, my friends! Here I stand lawfully wedded despite wearing hoodie sweatshirts to Touro and ponytails to weddings!” What a source of chizuk that would be… assuming none of them mutter something like “So that’s why it took you this long.”

The Bad for Shidduchim Club is not my idea. I’d love to give credit where it’s due, but for obvious reasons, will refrain from doing so. Suffice it to say that a happily married woman told me about it, inspiring me for life.

Mrs. Married told me that she and many of her friends remained Miss Singles for an “unusually” long amount of time. At the venerable old age of 26 they were still unpaired, like socks out of the dryer. And they were thoroughly sick of it. “It” being everything shidduch dating, but mostly the ridiculous restraints and pressures put on them. So they started the Bad for Shidduchim Club.

Really it was more of an ongoing points contest. Actions that are considered “bad for shidduchim” were all assigned point values. For example, going to college in a ponytail would be worth 10 points, while rolling out of bed and not even touching one’s hair the entire day might be worth 90 for curlyheads and 70 for straight-haired participants. Bad for shidduchim hairThe purpose is to accumulate as many points as possible. Meeting a benchmark figure entitles you to an ice cream or pizza courtesy of the other club members, which you eat while giggling and telling stories about how people reacted to your scandalous behavior.

Some people know how to live.

So, using a point scale of increments by 10 running from 10 to 100, here are some ideas:

10 – ponytail all day

20 – long skirt all day (must leave house and pass through major Jewish center at some point)

30 – wear crocs or hiking boots for a day of shopping

30 – long skirt combined with hoodie sweatshirt and sneakers in Touro, Machon L’Parnassa, or somewhere similar

30 – send your mother shopping with one of those old-lady shopping carts

40 – wear a denim skirt and white tube socks on 13th Avenue

40 – rollerblade down a major avenue

50 – go jogging, in broad daylight, through a Jewish neighborhood

50 – attend a vort or wedding in regular Shobbos clothing

50 – not offering to “help” when spending Shobbos in a house that has 4 teenaged girls jostling for room in the kitchen

50 – dress up in a full costume on Purim

60 – get your picture in the newspaper

60 – loudly ask for some hard liquor at the bar at a simcha

60 – hitchhike around town

70 – meet your male cousin on a busy avenue and stand conversing on the street corner for 5 minutes. An additional 10 points for every additional two minutes you chat.

70 – tell people that you’re “going for” something unusual, like philosophy or astrophysics

70 – attend a wedding without makeup

80 – publish a novel under your real name

80 – ponytail to a wedding

80 – take up fencing at a local Renaissance Faire

90 – no touching your hair day

90 – appear to smoke a cigarette on a street corner/drink from a can in a paper bag

100 – appear on your own float in the Thanksgiving Day Parade, throwing out copies of your ‘resume’ like confetti

TBA – Any utterly shocking behavior – like grabbing a handle in the back of and riding a truck down Coney Island Avenue, dashing into a wedding wearing your work clothes “just to say mazal tov”, dancing in a thunderstorm, running around and around in a revolving door, wearing a towel on International Towel Day, or holding a shopping-cart race in Target will need to be assigned point-value by vote.

Obviously I’m missing quite a number of actions. Feel free to contribute below.

Awards will be given at levels of 200, meaning after earning 200 points, a person gets their first award, and after another 200, they get another prize.

Anyone want to form a chapter and start earning points immediately?


51 thoughts on “The Bad for Shidduchim Club

  1. Why just not reduce the whole list to one point; it’s what it all boils down to anyway:
    1) Express, in any way, shape or form, any individuality or nonconformity.

    There, done.

  2. Niiiice. I’ll join! Heck, I think I’ve been a member for years without knowing, I’ve got a major backlog of points! Woohoo, pizza and ice cream all around!

    Does the wedding in a ponytail count if you went with your hair down and halfway through the first dance you put it up cuz it was getting in your way? Or do I only get half points for that? Also, I’ve gone to plenty of vorts in regular Shabbos clothes…or even (horrors) “Rosh Chodesh clothes”, which are a little nicer than average but still not overly dressy. In fact, I think that I’ve worn Shabbos or Rosh Chodesh clothes to every vort I’ve ever gone to. No wonder I feel underdressed… 😛

    Why does not touching your hair get more points than a novel?

  3. lol. I qaulify for a few of those. Firstly, I only wear regular shabbos clothes to vorts, and even some weddings. A dress is a dress. (especially when its black.) Second, the not touching my hair is totally fine with me- but its straight.

    And when I am cold in Touro- I zip up my little black zip-up and that is that.

    But the long skirts? I dunno. I just can’t bring myself to wear them. lol.

    Once again, you succeeded in bringing a smile and an inapropriate loud laugh (for shidduchim anyways. I hear that a small chuckle is better. whatever is what I say.) to emerge from my lips. So kudos.

  4. haha… i think i’m on my way towards the 200 mark already. i’m sure there are things not on the list that i’ve done too but I guess I don’t think they are necessarily ‘bad for shidduchim’ even if others might.

    i’m bored of jogging on the treadmill… i may be adding more points soon if I go for a run around the block here 😛

  5. Can you get points retroactively? Because if we’d started this a year or two ago, I’d have over 10k (wait, need to finish doing the math…) and I need a prize or two or seven.

    Does it count if you do things in camp season? Assuming you’re not within camp grounds at the time.

    I demand witnesses if you’ve surfed a truck down CI Ave. I’ve done it in more private venues, though! (guess it loses some shock value there… maybe half points? cmon…)

    When is International Towel Day?

  6. 80 – publish a novel under your real name

    Yay! I can’t wait until I actually do this!

    Also, I took fencing last semester!

    And also, Frank: THOSE who matter don’t mind and those who mind…..don’t matter or, as Ezzie likes to repeatedly say, “the people who care don’t matter and the people who matter don’t care.”

  7. You need to form an auxiliary club for mothers, although the point system would need adjusting. Saying that the way shidduchim are made today stinks can get you 20-30 points depending on the listener. Wearing a hat out instead of a sheitle is a real no-no worth a gazillion points. Admitting to a plastic tablecloth in the Sukkah is 20 points. And admitting that you not only know how to get on the Internet but go there and even blog there–hey I earn two ice cream sundaes with extra whipped cream for that one. Who am I kidding–I’m half way to owning the darned ice cream shop already!

  8. I’d add wearing a bright color to weddings to the list.

    (And drop smoking, because it’s scandalous for a very good reason. Now, if only it were scandalous for the men as well.)

  9. Good points, Jackie. Wear anything that’s not a muted maroon, bottle green, beige, brown, or black, and you’ve got 40 points right there.

  10. i’ve worn a ponytail to a wedding. the whole time.
    i wear long jean skirts and hoodies all the time.
    if i owned crocs, i would wear them for a day of shopping.
    met my friends brother on a street corner and started chatting. it wasn’t inappropriate, he just needed to ask me something, but who knows what the onlookers thought?
    and you know what? I don’t think these things effect my shidduchim at all. and if by some chance they do, it’s ok. i’m not interested in her son anyway.

  11. as Ezzie likes to repeatedly say, “the people who care don’t matter and the people who matter don’t care.”

    Tsk tsk. You forgot “Be yourself, because…” 😀 And it was Serach’s line, not mine!

    The ‘mind/matter’ line is from the famous Dr. Seuss.

  12. Bad- Ive been perusing ur blog and Im impressed. Your very eloquent for a 20 year old. Also I am definitely a member of the bad for shidduchim club. I used to be more into my image and trying not to do as many things that are bad for shidduchim( wen i was like 19-20 ). Now at the ripe old age of 22 almost 23 i really dont care any more. I live life how I want to live it and if the guy doesnt want me for who I am Im fine with that.

    At this point i realize that im really happy I didnt get married at 20. Im single and happy! I really enjoy the single life. I have a great job, friends, social life family etc. There is really no need to rush marriage. Its not all the fun and games that it seems. Successful marriages are hard work and although id be thrilled to find the right one and move on to the next chapter in life I am enjoying this stage to the fullest!

    Also you forgot the major thing bad for shidduchim and where I really rack up the points is dancing in any way that can be constued as provacative at weddings…

  13. Hi Jenn! Thanks for dropping by. My you’re old – here, have a seat; we wouldn’t want to aggravate your arthritis. Tut – misbehaving at *weddings* with all those Big Sisters scribbling in their notebooks while we dance… I’m shocked. I really am.

  14. if you’re insisting on using a machitza at a wedding, why does anyone care how the girls dance??? At least if you’re arguing the fundemental problem with it is that women shouldn’t give men bad thoughts.

    (I’d find problem with it anyway, but then on I don’t delude my self in to thinking that tznius is intended to protect boys thoughts. Boys have enough thinking problems that tznius only excaserbates them.)

    Its like insisting that women can’t sing at a concert that has only women there. (ignoring the fact that kol isha is not an absolute halacha, even though everyone seems to think it is.)

  15. Can the rarer occasions count retroactively? I had a bunch of weddings/vorts in the weeks before this went up, and now I have no weddings for months… But I wore regular Shabbos clothes to the weddings, a pony to one, and (*gasp*) my work clothes to the vort. My best work clothes, but still.

    Also, I pondered the 13th Avenue thing… has to be worth more, sorry. ;-P

    It’s OK, though, with the ponytails and shopping wagons, I plan to earn my first award by the end of the week.

  16. Where do braids fall on the ponytail spectrum? Do they count as ponytails cuz they’re just another way of pulling your hair back?

    And what about people who wear their hair back because they think it’s too long to be tzanua if they wear it down?

    What about wearing your hair curly? I don’t own a hair dryer or iron.

  17. Braid? Probably as bad as a ponytail.

    If it’s too long to wear down that’s still bad, because they should get a haircut, of course. 😉

    I think there are certain points for going curly because there seems to be some odd sentiment that straight is more “refined”. (Go tell that to God, I say.) At the same time, though, most curlyheads don’t have the patience for straightening all the time, so it would be a low point count – maybe 10 points. At this rate, I’ll earn an ice cream every 20 days!

  18. Exxxxxxcellent. I’m well on my way to an ice-cream treat. Although my treat should probably be a salad or something…being over a size 4 is also bad for shidduchim. 😛

  19. Love how not touching your hair for a day is worth just as many points as mock smoking/boozing on a street corner.
    Kids and their hair (sigh).

  20. No – sorry! The nature of braids is that they keep your hair relatively neat (compared to what it would otherwise look like).

    My gosh – this is getting more complicated than I thought. I’m going to need to get a lawyer working on this!

  21. 20 days? That’s just a ponytail every day; you can do better than that!
    My mother uses the shopping wagon almost every day. At least 3 times a week, I think. So I have it made 🙂

    Now, unless you can find a way to email me the ice cream, we need to plan a rendezvous.

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  24. You know, I’ve been earning points for years and not knowing it….I usually wear Shabbos clothes to weddings, usually wear either a pony or a bun, or even a braid sometimes, and almost always wear long skirts. I jog whenever and wherever it strikes my fancy (or I feel the rush), don’t wear makeup to weddings, and if I thought of a novel to write, I’d write it under my real name..why not?
    Too bad…

  25. Hey, bad4shidduchim,
    I just discovered your blog (my aunt sent me a link to your short guys rant, after a whole family conference on this burning issue on Sukkos), and I LOVE it! I’ve been reading the rest of it for the past hour or so. you’re a really great writer, and as a 22-year-old Bais Yaakov non-conformist who’s just beginning to feel the beginnings of desperation to get married, I can relate WAY too well. I can’t believe you’re only 21-22- from your content, but mostly from your mature and educated tone, I had put you at around 27. I really hope you’re majoring in something English-related, because it would be a shame to waste all that talent (can you tell I’m really jealous? I had to look up persiflage!).
    kol hakavod- for making us laugh and commiserate, and spreading achdus among Jews in a great, totally kosher, forum.

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  27. what’s wrong with showing up at a wedding in weekday clothes just to say mazel tov for a second? I did it at the atrium in monsey when I was leaving straight after the wedding for a road trip.

  28. Someone needs to make a boys version of this, believe it or not we get the same comments once we get older than 23 or so.

  29. Bad4, I just saw this post! (Thanks so SiBW)
    I want to join…
    except I think that I’d deliberately embarrass myself even more than I do on a daily basis.

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