(Purim starts Wednesday night. Enjoy!)
Purim is a holiday based on the Book of Esther, so go read it. I wrote here last year, “the observance of Purim, which is based on the Book of Esther (most likely a historical novella, rather than fact), provides an opportunity to celebrate how we were saved as a people, over and over and over again. But …Esther is not a children’s story. After all, the king chooses his new wife by trying out all the candidates, one a night, after they’d been trained for a year in the skills of courtesans. Think ‘Gigi,’ rather than ‘Cinderella.’”
Traditional practices include, for example, chanting said book in Hebrew from a scroll, using noisemakers to blot out the name of Haman (the bad guy), dressing up in costume, giving charity, exchanging packages of edible goodies, baking and eating the three-cornered filled cookies known as hamantaschen,
Three hamantashen. At top: Poppy seed. Bottom left: Raspberry. Right: Apricot .
and getting drunk.
THE WORLD FAMOUS STORY OF PURIM
by Meish Goldish (passed on by Lex Vega in 2001)
The story of Purim is an international tale.
King Achashverosh was Finnish with his disobedient wife Vashti. “You Congo now!” he ordered her.
After she had Ghana way, the king’s messengers went Roman the land to find a new queen. And India end, the beautiful Esther won the crown. Meanwhile, Mordechai sat outside the palace, where the Chile Haman would Czech up on him daily.
“I Haiti you because you refuse to bow to me!” Haman scolded Mordechai. “USA very stubborn man. You Jews are such Bahamas! If you keep his up, Denmark my words! I will have all your people killed! Just Kuwait and see, you Turkey!“
Mordechai went into mourning and tore his clothes- a custom known as Korea. He urged Esther to plead with the king. The Jews fasted for three days and grew very Hungary. Esther approached the king and asked, ‘Kenya Belize come to a banquet I’ve prepared for you and Haman?”
At the feast, she invited her guests to a second banquet to eat Samoa. The king asked, “Esther, why Jamaica big meal like this? Just tell me what you want. Unto half my United Kingdom will I give you.”
Esther replied, “Spain full for me to say this, but Haman is Russian to kill my people.”
Haman’s loud Wales could be heard as he carried Honduran this scene. “Oman!” Haman cried bitterly. “Iraq my brains in an effort to destroy the Jews. But that sneaky Mordechai – Egypt me! ”
Haman and his ten sons were hanged and went immediately to the Netherlands. And to Sweden the deal, the Jews were allowed to Polish off the rest of their foes as well. “You lost your enemies and Uganda friend,” the king smiled.
And that is why the Purim story Israeli a miracle. God decided to China light on His chosen people.
So now, let’s celebrate! Forget all your Syria’s business and just be happy!
Serb up some wine and Taiwan on!
Purim Shpiel: Megillat Esther Alternative Names (2014) (selections, v. lightly edited)
Abbot “Ready for Megillat Esther?”
Costellowitz: “Well actually where I come from, well – we call that book different things”
Abbot: “Like what?”
Costellowitz: “Well – say the guy who is reading is laughing and joking the whole time – We called that Megillat Jester”
If he is from Mexico, Megillat Siesta
If the reader has a scarlet letter A – Megillat Hester
If you accidentally read the megillah a day early, it’s called Megillat Yester
If you let that Purim story seep in so it affects your whole being, it’s called Megillat Fester
Now, if your sister reads the megillah for you, it’s called Megillat Schvester
If you read the megillah in a cheap shirt, it’s called Megillat Polyester
If you’re pregnant, it’s called Megillat Trimester
If you’re ever stuck in a courtroom and have to read the megillah, it’s Megillat Sequester
If you read the megillah on a college campus, it’s Megillat Semester
If you read the megillah with an annoying relative, it’s Megillat Pester
A Megillah Free From Temptation
Published March 09, 2014.in The Backward, Forward’s annual Purim spoof]
Paid advertisement for good kosher product (abridged)
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The “Kosher Megillah”: now available at any good mikveh or at Amazon.com. Comes with free chador.
A White House Purim
The first Jewish president of the United States has been inaugurated, and the first Jewish holiday that follows is Purim. So he calls up his mother to invite her to the White House for Purim. Their conversation goes something like this:
“Mom, with Purim being the first holiday after my inauguration, I want you to celebrate it with us at the White House.”
“Oh, I don’t know. I’ll have to get to the airport and…”
“Mom! I’m the president of the United States! I’ll send a limo for you to take you right to the airport!”
“OK, but when I get to the airport, I’ll have to stand on the line to buy a ticket and check my baggage. Oy, it will be so difficult for me.”
“Mom, don’t worry about standing on lines or any of that. I’m the most powerful person in the world. I’m the president. I’ll send Air Force One for you!!”
“Well, OK. But when I get to Washington, I’ll have to find a cab and…”
“Momma, please! I’ll have a helicopter waiting for you. It will bring right to the White House lawn!!!”
“Well … but where will I stay? Can I get a hotel room…”
“Momma, we have this whole big White House!!!! There will be plenty of room!!!! Please join us for Purim?”
“Ok, I’ll be there.”
Two seconds later, she calls her friend:
“Hello, Sadie? Guess what? I’m spending Purim at my son’s house!”
“Oh, the doctor?”
“No, the other one.”