Thursday, July 15, 2010

Back to the Kansas

So many years ago, out of the land of Goshen, I heard my people's crying heart... In other news, here's yesterday's news, served fried on a stick:
My friend Sruli Clapman and I just got back from a house call in Leawood, Kansas. There's a very nice elderly couple living there, and we were coming to check their Mezuzos. First, of course, we exchanged histories. He was born to Jewish parents in Salt Lake City, Utah, but had no Jewish contact until he met his current wife, in Omaha. She's involved with the Chabad here in Kansas City, and had asked for us to come. The first Mezuzah-case that we looked at had no scroll. The second had a piece of paper in it. The third had a piece of parchment, but it was obviously not Kosher. So we put up five Mezuzos, which is really tremendous. Might be a little expensive in the short run, but they protect you and all you own, for eternity, or your next scheduled oil tuneup, whichever comes first.

Following the Mezuzos, we asked the man of the house if he would like to put on Tefillin. He hemmed and hawed a bit, but his wife soon put a stop to that. 45 seconds later, he had phylacteries on his head. The first time too. Amazing, isn't it, that a Jewish man can go 85+ years without checking his Jewish blood pressure! And then it was time to go, but not before cooing over their great-grandson, who is quite cute, I must say.

A couple of nights later we went to Lawrence to learn some Torah with the locals. Lawrence is the home of Kansas University, and so I learned Kuntres Inyana Shel Toras HaChassidus with a student (Lawrence is the home of KU, and therefore I learned with a guy? Whatever happened to the almighty editor?). We'll call him Charles. Sorry about the plug there, it was just one of those things that had to be done. Essentially, this work explains why Chassidus is so important. After all, we have the Torah, the Mishna, the Talmud, the Kabbala, the Medrash, the Codifiers, and the great Halachic authorities. Who needs Chassidus? I won't spoil the surprise, so go pick up a copy and find out.

Officially we sell books on Merkos Shlichus. OK, not only officially, but something tells me that a little more emphasis was put on it forty years ago than today. Just a hunch. Anyway, I'm just doing my part.

After the learning was done we settled down to a Farbrengen with Rabbis Wineberg and Teichtel. It's great to be able to sit with guys who really don't have too much contact with the rest of the Lubavitch world, and who look for inspiration from Yeshiva guys like me. Me! Sure, I'm great and all, but I don't really see myself as too inspirational. (If anyone disagrees they can post a comment). See, guys in Yeshiva look up to the Shluchim, and rightly so. These people are on the front line of the battle for Jewish survival, and they're doing an incredible job! Meanwhile the Shluchim (some of them anyway) are pining for their days in Yeshiva, where a guy can be surrounded by people like himself all day and just learn and pray and all those things to his heart's content.


sarabonne said...

Do you know the time frame of when something goes from being vintage to antique?

The Real Shliach said...

When it costs more than a grand?

Modeh B'Miktsas said...

A vintage car is driven to an auto show.
An antique is towed.

Re the teykh'n: I thought etz hachayim was about why learn chasidus? You've got another pamphlet too?

The Real Shliach said...


Correct- you should learn it.

e said...

Modeh: Chassidus spends a lot time explaining why you should learn it. It is a bit circular.

e said...


Modeh B'Miktsas said...

teykh'n is the proper transliteration of תוכן according to the prestigious and academically recognized SPLAT (Stupid Pseudo-Litvish Transliteration) standard.

"You should learn it."
A-What?! It isn't enough that I signed up for a mesechta for the chalukas hashas?

B-After I finish קול דודי דופק and עלה נעלה .

C- And you get me a chavrusa and/or a bottle of mashkah. Lubavitch machashava doesn't make much sense to those whose brains were not properly primed first.

The Real Shliach said...

A. No, it's not enough to only learn Nigleh.

B. Nu, what are you waiting for?

C. You got alcohol at your Bris, right? That should have been enough.

Modeh B'Miktsas said...

A: But think about who I'm learning it for.

B: Time and patience.

C: If you flick a drop of vinegar at a cucumber does it become a pickle?

The Real Shliach said...

1. So?

2. If not now...

3. If you consider the scale...