A Passover Message from Shaindle Schmuckler

A Passover Message from Shaindle Schmuckler

For our Passover holiday issue, we invited members of our community to share their responses.

Shaindle Schmuckler spreads her energy and humor as a regular contributor to the Atlanta Jewish Times.

Shaindle Schmuckler
Shaindle Schmuckler

What Would You Do?

I wish I had some photos of me at my six-year-old Pesach seder. I was so farputzed (gussied up). I am in my velvet Pesach dress with a ribbon and bow for a faux belt, black Maryjane’s and white anklets with lace complementing my shoes.

Before my family walked the three blocks to my Bubbie’s and Zaidie’s apartment, my sister (baby sister hadn’t been born yet) and I were carefully instructed on the behaviors which were expected of me. My parents, aunts, uncles, and grandparents all spoke and scolded in Yiddish. Somehow, these warnings all sounded far more ominous in Yiddish.

I offer you some “What Would You Do” examples to consider:

* Upon our arrival, we are to say ah gooten (good) Pesach.
* If it was cool outside, and we were wearing jackets, we were to hang said jackets in the hall closet on hooks provided for the kids.
* If you must go to the bathroom, do not come running out yelling it stinks. FYI: *The cause of the smell was from the fish Bubbie kept in her bathtub, which she saved for creating the delicious gefilte fish for the Pesach seder meal. (Don’t even ask how she must have murdered that poor fish)
* Do not crawl under the Pesach seder table to play hide and seek.
* Do not check to see who was tall enough to have their feet touch the floor.
* Do not make any noises during the reading of the Haggadah.
* Do not touch the grandfather clock in the corner.
* Do not go into anyone’s bedroom to play.
* Do not bounce on their beds.
* Do not look in anyone’s closet or dresser draws for buried treasures.
* Do not spread your skirt out on the big chair in order to pretend you are a princess. (This was aimed specifically at me.)
* Keep your patent leather Maryjane shoes clean, you must wear them to shul.
* Don’t play with your hair, your sister’s hair, or your cousins’ hair; do not play with anyone’s hair.
* Don’t touch and/or taste the food or candy before seder begins.
* Do not open the door to the hallway. (We will open it when Elijah arrives.)
* Do not play on the steps in the hallway, the super will get angry.
* Do not play with the silverware or napkins.

And these were only the beginning of the litany of our marching orders. So, what would you do? Obey the rules? Choose a few you would take as a challenge rather than warnings? Use your imagination to picture the giggles my cousins and I had making a decision.

Shaindle Schmuckler is a freelance writer with the Atlanta Jewish Times.

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