web analytics
September 19, 2014 / 24 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
Apartment 758x530 Africa-Israel at the Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York

Africa Israel Residences, part of the Africa Israel Investments Group led by international businessman Lev Leviev, will present 7 leading projects on the The Israel Real Estate Exhibition in New York on Sep 14-15, 2014.



And He Created Man With His Mold…

Twenties-110813

I’m driving down Lexington, smirking to myself at having evaded the avenues with either traffic lights or traffic. The only snag here is a four way stop just before the library. I can handle that one. It’s usually fast.

And then I’m slowing down, cause the car in front of me is slowing, and I see a bunch of cars stopped coming towards me, and there’s a crossing guard in the intersection.  What’s a crossing guard doing in the intersection? Groan. Must be some kind of… I don’t know. Oh. Maybe even a bein hasedarim thing. Cool. Except that it means that I have to wait. Not that I’m in any sort of particular huge rush, but it particularly irks me to be sneakily stuck in a place where I’m not supposed to be stuck. Unfair.

As if to drive the screw in deeper, the crossing guard seems smugly intent on keeping me waiting as long as possible. Ignoring my friendly intent to catch her eye and wave (crossing guards here are usually the friendly sort, and will wave back, exchange greetings, and happily accept drinks on hot days), she waved at the cars going left, and she waved at the cars going right, and she waved at the cars going left again, and she even let some cars facing me go!- all the while intermittently holding up her hand towards me in a casual, almost meaningless gesture, teeth-grinding in its insolence of power behind the invalidating dismissiveness.

I wait, and I sigh, and I wait, comforted at least with the knowledge that it’s not my fault, because I could not have known this would happen… and plus, I am the first car waiting, and there is something distinctly preventative to frustration about being the first car waiting. I may be waiting, but I know I’m almost going.

And then it looks clear, and I think she’s about to wave me through, and here comes an older man, about to cross the street in front of me. And of course she gives that tiny flick at me to wait, and waves at him to cross.

As the cars running parallel to him roll merrily along, I watch this man cross the street. He has a grey-white messy beard, a cap pulled low, and a face buried in his chest. Sixtyish, well built, non-Jewish or secular. He walks with a hurried, stooped gait. His clothes are, well… forget it. I’ll just say it the way it is. You know how they look. Those people. The ones that hang out at the library, or in certain sections of town, walking, talking…   There he goes, talking to himself out loud, calling out loudly something which I can’t decipher.

I wonder what medication he’s on. Nah, why medication? Maybe it’s drugs. Or maybe he’s just like that. I don’t know. What makes people like that? I wonder. Is it something they’re born with, or does it, like, just happen? Sad. Does he, like, think? Does he know what’s going on? Or is he, like, totally in dreamland?

And again, I wonder… what medication is he on? Zombie. Whatever. One of those.

He’s almost on the other side of the street when another man comes hurrying along the sidewalk towards him. Black suit, white shirt, dark beard, hat, and tzitzis swinging, he’s running to catch the intersection before the window of “crossing time” ends.

Head down, jogging gait, he’s almost at the intersection, when he lifts his hand, and, without breaking stride, calls out loudly in a friendly voice, “Hi, Steve!”

It’s the voice of casual familiarity, that which says, “I know you, and you know me, and I don’t have to stop for a formal greeting, because we’re friends, and you know I’m running to catch the light, and we’ll see each other tomorrow again, probably, anyway. See ya, friend!”

The man with the old sneakers and white beard and head bent against his chest raises his hand and calls out a cheerful response which I cannot decipher. The yungerman jogs on into the street, reaches the curb, and continues on at a hurried but more dignified pace.

And I am stuck at the stop sign, not waiting anymore, because I can sit here for a thousand years, and just think, and feel, and smile.

I would feel ashamed, if there were not this beautiful flower blooming and growing within me. It is not rebuke. It is confirmation, of something that I must have once known, or should have known, or thought I should know, but somehow buried and corroded under the mindless erosion of…

Of  “this is us, and they are them.” Of disdainful looks, of raised eyebrows, and mindless sighs of annoyance.

It’s woken up, that knowledge inside me. I feel free now, to be me, and to see, and know, and feel, way beyond the mindlessness beyond me.

The crossing guard waves me through, and I smile all the way down Lexington.

I’m almost at the library. There’s an unkempt man who’s usually there, speaking to everyone and no one and someone at random moments.

If he’s there, I’m gonna smile. And I’m gonna see way more then all those people see. Cause he’s not just them. He’s us, too.

After all, we are all cookie-cutter folks.

Cast from one mold.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “And He Created Man With His Mold…”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Protest rally against Metropolitan Opera staging Death of Klinghoffer on 9/22 at 4:30 pm at the Met.
For Grass Roots Klinghoffer Protest 9/22, Jewish Establishment MIA
Latest Sections Stories

Three sets of three-day Yomim Tovim can seem overwhelming – especially when we are trying to stay healthy.

Plotkin-092614

Is a missed opportunity to do a mitzvah considered a sin?

Teens-Twenties-logo

The sounds and scents of the kitchen are cozy, familiar, but loud in the silence.

Baim-092614-Plate

Everyone has a weakness. For some people it is the inability to walk past a sales rack without dropping a few hundred dollars. For others, it’s the inability to keep their house organized.

His entire life was dedicated to Torah and he became a pivotal figure in the transmittal of the Oral Torah to the next generation.

When you don’t have anyone else to turn to… that’s when you’re tied to Hashem the closest.

While we all go to restaurants for a good meal, it is dessert, that final taste that lingers in your mouth, that is the crown jewel of any dining experience and Six Thirteen’s offerings did not disappoint.

Today, fifty years and six million (!) people later, Israel is truly a different world.

There will always be items that don’t freeze well – salads and some rice- or potato-based dishes – so you need to leave time to prepare or cook them closer to Yom Tov and ensure there is enough room in the refrigerator to store them.

In Uzbekistan, in the early twentieth century, it was the women who wore the pants.

This is an important one in raising a mentsch (and maybe even in marrying off a mentsch! listening skills are on the top of the list when I do shidduch coaching).

While multitasking is not ideal, it is often necessary and unavoidable.

More Articles from Chava Adams
Twenties-110813

Those people. The ones that hang out at the library, or in certain sections of town, walking, talking…

Miri was a special child.

I didn’t know that at first. She had thick, dark hair, round face, and a slow smile. “I’m six,” she said.

But then I learned what it felt like when Miri wrapped her arms around you and hugged. Her face upturned, that slow smile spreading across it. Reaching her eyes, that would grow, and grow and grow, liquid ovals of brown above cheeks tinged deep pink.

Another tree is down.

I’m driving down Lakewood Avenue, figuring that maybe, just maybe, the tree that blocked the middle of North Lake Drive has been removed, and I can go through. After all, they had a whole day. I’m sure things have been taken care of.

The taxi driver was old and rather shriveled, with a crop of white hair fringing his head.

Ah, I recognize this one, I thought with relief, hurrying to open the door. If I recall correctly, he knows Lakewood. You would think that a taxi driver, being that his/her job is, well, driving, and being that the town they are driving in is, well, Lakewood…

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/magazine/teens-twenties/and-he-created-man-with-his-mold/2013/11/08/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: