Sinister Secret Society

Welcome to the Secret Society. There are rules. There are regulations. There are expectations of how you will behave and comport yourself. We will tell you all about them after you take the oath.

Are you one of us?

Well of course you are. You’ve been waiting for this day. Talk about “na’aseh vinishma” – we know you’re in, so we can make demands.

Someone will tell you all you need to know.

Several someones.

You won’t know when. There will be no warning. But information will be imparted and you will know it. After which you are expected to behave accordingly.

Are you ready?

That was a rhetorical question.

Welcome to Shidduchim.

That old high school classmate who suggested you start ironing your hair daily? She was an agent. Listen and obey. That nosy neighbor who gave you the elevator eyes when you were taking out the garbage? She was an agent. Listen and obey. The former teacher who told you that story about the girl who dressed up on the day she happened to meet her future mother-in-law? She was an agent too. Listen and obey to climb in the order. Disobey and risk the shame of being an eternal novitiate.

Three women – two of them young – sit in a living room.

“You should at least iron your bangs,” says the older young one, flipping her perfectly straightened hair. “Now that you’re in shidduchim, you need to look nice for people.”

“I know,” says the youngest, self-consciously tugging a curly lock. “I just don’t have that time in the morning.”

“You’ll wake up a little earlier. It’s worth it. This is important.”

The older woman stands up and excuses herself. The straight-haired young woman nods after her. “My aunt? She’s a shadchan.”

The curly-haired one looked horrified. “And I was sitting here like this–!” her fingers flutter over her messy bun.

“Yes,” the other says. “But she’ll be at my wedding next week.”

“So I have another chance,” the first sighed in relief. The testing had begun. She would not fail again.

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7 thoughts on “Sinister Secret Society

  1. I remember feeling like that. That everyone was an agent- in touro I remember not really caring too much- and then I got phone calls that a girl in my class thought I was good for her brother, haha. That got me to try and look nice. And of course I made fun of my friend who went over to a shadchan at a classmates wedding all fancied up, and then that shadchan made her shidduch only a few weeks later. So the idea is true, but not true.

    Shidduchim come from crazy places. Sometimes they come from those scary agents, but lots of times they dont.
    Good luck!

  2. Relax. Don’t iron your hair. Don’t dress up. Marry someone who will think you are beautiful with curly hair and casual clothes. Want to impress a shadchan? Smile. I’d like to think that most of us are not shallow enough to value a girl just because she looks good. (Plus, it’s not my opinion of how pretty you are that matters – I am not dating you.)

  3. Bad4:
    Terrific post – reminded me of Agent Smith in the Matrix series of films. In practice though, isn’t it more important to be normal, not paranoid and make one’s own luck: try to meet and hang out with good friends as they are generally far better at offering potential shidduchim (they don’t charge either…)
    B’hatzlacha rabba

    Anon613-London

  4. My father: “Wear your contacts every day.”
    Me: “But I can’t read or see the computer in them.”
    Father: “So? Guys don’t make passes at girls who wear glasses.”

    Thanks, Ta.

  5. Mary Poppins- I couldn’t agree more! You said it just right. Of course we have to try our best, but it’s more important to impress Hashem than it is to impress shadchanim.

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