Oy Bay!

"My heart is in the east, and I in the uttermost west." — Yehudah Ha-Levi

Most. Unromantic. Jew. EVER.

Posted by Oyster on February 15, 2007

Jewish Valentine

Oyster doesn’t know when to shut up, and thus secures his single status for eternity.

I am a Valentine’s Day grouch. I don’t like the holiday. For several reasons. Mainly, because I am a Jew, and this is a Christian holiday.

But Oyster, we’re just celebrating it as a secular day of love!

That might be true, but there’s also a Jewish day of love, called Tu B’Av (not to be confused with Tisha B’Av). The fact that so many Jews deign to celebrate the Christian holiday, and not the Jewish one smacks of assimilation / apologetics.

Secondly, I am literally ‘unromantic’. Why? The term ‘romance’ comes from a medieval nostalgic view of the Roman Empire. And while Western Civilization in general fawns over their Roman legacy, we Jews come from a different civilization. One that was almost crushed by the Romans. So I don’t find the term endearing or flattering.

Furthermore, what is the true story behind St. Valentine’s Day? Truth be told, even the Catholics aren’t quite sure. In fact, they removed the Feast of Saint Valentine from their church calendar during the Second Vatican Council in 1969, because they believe that the stories around Valentine are purely myth. If the holiday isn’t kosher enough for the Catholics, it sure ain’t kosher for me.

And finally, a real downer: 2,000 Jews martyred for their faith in Strausbourg, France, on February 14th, 1349. Burned to death in a Jewish cemetery for “host desecration”, or “ritual murder”, or some other Christian dementia. Awww shucks. Real Roman-tic of you guys! You shouldn’t have. No really, you shouldn’t have! Rot in Hell!

And I won’t even go into the corporate Hallmark commoditization of the holiday. That’s a whole ‘nother post!

As for the perceptive reader, the above is not a “Jewish Valentine’s Day card” of any sort. But rather, it’s a traditional New Year’s card; Jewish New Years. Work with me people, work with me! Rosh HaShana, ring a bell? That’s an appropriate time to send your Jewish crush some lovin’. That, and on Tu B’Av.

Now that all of that is off my chest, I’ll just get ready to entertain my cats for the rest of my life.

P.S.- Looks like some Very Hot Jews ™ from LA also agree with my sentiments. If I’ve neglected to pimp them on Oy Bay thus far, then consider yourselves pimped.

P. P. S. – And who is Oyster’s Valentine? Why, Antisemitic nut-job Friedrich Braun, of course! I don’t want to run and hide from you, I’m your Jewy love-worm!

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7 Responses to “Most. Unromantic. Jew. EVER.”

  1. shiduri said

    i heart oyster

  2. rachel said

    ah yes, we got this lecture every year at day school, in a letter to our parents. i was just glad we didn’t have to make cards and mailboxes and crap like they did in books.

    jewy love-worm – AWW!

  3. Oyster said

    Awwww… shucks, you guys… !

    Can you feel the love on this post, gentle Oy Bay readers?

    Shiduri: Hopefully that was for me, and not a public statement on your culinary preferences? :-p

    Rachel: What’s “books”? Some public school?

  4. Esther said

    I’m not entirely comfortable with the term “Jewy love-worm,” but I do think I remember that New Year’s Card being from the JTS Library collection.

  5. Oyster said

    🙂 It doesn’t sound nearly as bad if you read my Valentine’s rant that I link to…

    Yes, the website that had that image was pretty random. Thanks for assuring me that such a gem is well archived in a respectible Jewish institution.

    Bonus points for anyone who translates the Yiddish!

  6. rachel said

    books = books about public school (occasionally catholic school) kids. i always wanted to know how the “rest of the world” lived… 😀

  7. […] exempt from the traditional fasting on their wedding day. In modern times, it is dubbed the “Jewish Valentines Day.” The only observances are we omit tachnun (confession of sins) and similar portions from the […]

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