Thursday, October 12

The Sukkos Stakes

I do not think of myself as a competitive person.
But there is something about this holiday that brings out a fierce competitiveness that apparently lays dormant in my nature for 52 weeks a year. Suddenly, Sukkos will role around and I become as cut-throat and bloodthirsty as Genghis Kahn in order to win the Sukkos Stakes.

Now let me make this clear, the Sukkos Stakes are different for men than they are for women. For men they are as simple as having the nicest esrog or remembering the most Ushpizim by heart.

For me, it’s not so simple.
On Sukkos, somehow I seem to need validation that I am the BEST.

Here in London the little kiddies go Sukkah hopping to each and every Sukkah accompanied by an adult. They will then look around the Sukkah and give the Sukkah a rating of one out of ten. Ten being the highest and most bestest score one could ever get.

Oh, the plight of these poor, innocent, gullible youngsters!

Do they not realise that I place the sweetest, most colourful and additive loaded nosh in the Sukkah in order to manipulate their sugar addled brains into giving my Sukkah a ten out of ten????

Do I have no shame when I foist ziplocked bags full of tooth putrefying junk food into their greedy, sticky little hands knowing full well that their eeny weeny teeth are decomposing as they are walking home????
Apparently not.

Every year I stoop to a new low as I get my ten out of ten rating.
Because nothing less will do.

Now here’s the second category of the Sukkos Stakes and this is the one with the fiercest competition. This is called the ‘Who Had the Best and Most Interesting Chol Hamoed Trip’.I don’t always win this one and some years, I have to admit, I don’t even make it to the finals!
But, I try.
They know up Above that I try.

Throughout all the years of shlepping to Legoland, Thorpe Park, Windsor Safari Park, London Zoo, boating on the Thames, indoor skiing, and open air ice skating, there remains the one outing that I just adored. It was different, it was unique and it bordered on the bizarre. It was my all time favourite jaunt which allowed me to waltz away with the title of:
‘Sukkah Queen 2003’.

It was an unseasonably sunny day for Chol Hamoed when I packed up my kids, assorted nieces and nephews and one sister-in-law into my tank and set off into the heart of London. We headed to Tower Bridge, where the famous magician David Blaine was being suspended in a glass box overlooking the River Thames. By this time he was already as starved as an attention crazed debutante because he sort of didn’t take any food with him into his temporary glass home.
(Hey, temporary home- Sukkos- co-inky-dink ya think? Naa)

Anyhoo, we arrived and I immediately saw David, clear as day, raise his famished hand and wave to ME. He picked me, Kasamba, out from the crowd and he waved at ME.
I was so overcome by my emotion and his good sense that I screamed at the top of my lungs, “I LOVE YOU DAVID!” to which he feebly waved at me again.

It was only then I noticed the silence.
And when I whipped around I saw my kids groaning in embarrassment, my sister-in-law rolling her eyes and my nieces and nephews laughing their heads off.
I also noticed the throngs of Chassidim that were staring at me as if I had just taken a roasted pig on a spit out of my handbag.
They stared at me for a full five seconds (microwave seconds- loooong seconds) and then resumed giving their kids Bissli while watching the hungry man in the glass box.

Okay, so it wasn’t a completely original idea but seeing as most Chassidim don’t enter the Sukkos Stakes (because their Rebbe would probably frown upon it) –
I WON!!!!!
(Jumpstart Mexican wave and Aborigine victory dance)
Yeah, that felt good.

But unlike the Nicest Sukkah Competition where you get your mark right away, with Best Sukkos Trips you will never really know just how amazing your Sukkos outings were in this world. But lucky for us Jews, evidently after our 120 years are up, videos of our lives will be viewed by us and everyone who knows us in the afterlife (sans popcorn). It is only then that I’ll know if I indeed had the coolest Chol Hamoed excursions by how many ‘Oooohhhhs’ and ‘Ahhhhhhs’ I’ll hear.

In the meantime, I just do what I must.

Enjoy the rest of Sukkos!


At 1:06 AM, Blogger the only way i know said...

Lucky for you, your afterlife video probably won't require popcorn as a munchy distraction - bec it'll be soooo amazing!!!!

Cant say the same for moi - I think I'll need to make sure there's popcorn - lots of butter, cotton candy, caramelized peanuts, and Ben and Jerrys ice cream(okay, maybe klien's!) lol friend - you are ALWAYS numero uno to me!
I love you the bestest and the mostest - 10 out of 10 is not even enough!

At 1:37 AM, Blogger socialworker/frustrated mom said...

You are the winner by far-awesome post.

At 4:43 AM, Blogger BagelUndertheCouch said...

"i love you david!"
ah...couldn't get any better than that. as an oft-embarassed-by-'rents teenager, i weep for your children.

At 5:19 AM, Blogger ~ Sarah ~ said...

kasamba you most definitely win the Sukkah stakes this year!!

(And also for the most hilarious sukkot posting :)

At 6:58 AM, Blogger Nemo said...

Just what does one do after the first five minutes of watching the guy NOT move? How many people actually sat around watching this.

I don't know, if I was one of your kids, I'd be pretty ticked that we skipped Legoland

At 10:08 AM, Blogger RR said...

Sorry to crush your dreams, but apparently David Blaine is dating an Israeli actress he met here while entertaining residents of the North during the war. :-(

Legoland sounds awesome- my kids would love that! Some day, some day we'll all make the trip over there.

At 10:09 AM, Blogger tafka PP said...

Of course he waved to you- expert magician that he is, he probably had some sixth sense about the radioactive sweeties in your pockets.


I had a pig-on-spit moment myself this morning, alas can't blog about it...

At 4:19 PM, Blogger Scraps said...

I think you win the contest for "funniest Sukkot post" this year! Definitely a 10 out of 10.

At 6:01 PM, Blogger kasamba said...

THANK YOU for the most thrillingest, bestest, brillainting comment!!!!

Thanks Luv!

Unfortunately, with me as a parent- many people weep for my children!

YAY!!! I WIN!!!!

It was packed!!!! All you heard was the crunching of Bissli! And they got to go to legoland another day- chas vesholom that my kids shouldn't go to Legoland at least once during any chol hamoed!

At 6:04 PM, Blogger kasamba said...

I recall Mr Kasamba mentioning that as well!Come on over- legoland's just 45 minutes away!

Tafka PP:
I think you're right!
Now I told you mine- you tell me yours!

Oh yeah!!!!!
That's the way I like it
a-ha a-ha!
THANK YOU Shaifela!!!!

At 7:38 PM, Blogger kishmech said...

i am proud of being -5.....i'm sooo lazy i cant be bothered decorating. RR - you need a mortgage for legoland!! Just went to London zoo, what is it bout these places, the souvenier shops are extortionate!!

At 9:03 PM, Blogger jemima3 said...

This year some of my succah hoppers didn't even make it into the succah! I'd left the nash on the kitchen table ready for the succah.... they saw, they filled their bags and then scarpered and I was left shouting to their retreating backs "hey, don't you want to see the succah?" - I wonder what score that's worth.

At 11:54 PM, Blogger MC Aryeh said...

I really hope my afterlife video comes with an edit button...unless someone can produce a celebrity of greater stature who waved to them while suspended in a box without food over the river during sukkot, embarrasing their family in the process, I'd say you won hands down! Note to self: keep roasted pig on spit in shopping bag when Chassidim around...

At 2:23 AM, Blogger the only way i know said...

oh gosh...after tonight..i know exactly where you picked up your current brillianting vocabularious!
you are the best, Your Blogness!

At 2:25 AM, Blogger the only way i know said...

just read some back comments - and I disagree with people weeping for the kids!...unless you mean weeping with joy!

At 7:42 AM, Blogger Chasidishe Shaigitz said...

Just coming back from a farbi here, (so not exactly in the right state of mind to comment) Loved the post, hillarious as always, thanks:)

Was thinking "raise his famished hand and wave to ME. He picked me, Kasamba, out from the crowd"

Hmmm, must be a blog fan :)

I vote post/blog gets a perfect 10!

At 11:11 AM, Blogger kishmech said...

TOWIK- Yeah i'm so mean ....i was laughing at their discomfort and you know what, they embarrass us when they're tots.....Going up to random strangers or rabbis saying they're wearing pink knickers, having tantrums in supermarkets etc. By the time they're teenagers they deserve to have the tables turned on em i say. It's fun , hold them to ransom. lol.

At 1:21 PM, Blogger the only way i know said...

you're funny!
I'm a softy - so I go the other way - lol
but I get you! :)
shabbat shalom

At 2:54 PM, Blogger Sara with NO H said...

Oh man. I'd die of embarrassment if my mother ever did anything like that! lol But seeing as you're you, I love that you got away with it. I wonder how many tables talked about you that night. I love

At 5:15 PM, Blogger HilaHoney said...

ROFLOL!!!!! Kasamba, you are absolutely hilarious!!! I wish you could have your own comedy show! I give you a 10 out of 10 and vote you "best Sukkos post of 2006" :-)

always enjoy your stuff!!!


At 11:04 PM, Blogger kasamba said...

Kish: You mean, you don't have a theme???

Tsk, tsk, always make sure that the nosh is IN the sukkah- and you stand in front of it so they can't get to it until they give you a good mark!

I will keep my pig firmly IN my handbag in future!

No YOU are the best, my bloggnicousness!!!!

Chassidishe Shaigetz:
Thanks for you contribution to the Kasamba Sukkos Self Esteem Stakes!

Sara with no H:
Yeah, I got 'em talking!

Hila :
Thank you Shaifela!!!!

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