Jewish Humour

Jewish Humour

Monday, September 16, 2013

how successful Jews do business

Moishe (the father) says to his son : "I want you to marry a girl of my choice". The son says : "I will choose my own bride".
Moishe says : "But the girl is Bill Gates’ daughter".
The son answers : "Well, in that case, yes ok".
Moishe then approaches Bill Gates and says : "I have a husband for your daughter".
Bill Gates answers : "But my daughter is too young to get married"!
Moishe says : "But this young man is a vice-president of the World Bank".
Bill Gates answers : "Ah, in that case, yes ok".
Finally Moishe goes to see the president of the World Bank. Moishe says : "I have a young man to be recommended as a vice-president".
The president answers : "But I already have more vice-presidents than I need".
Moishe says : "But this young man is Bill Gates' son-in-law".
The President answers : "Ah, in that case, yes ok."

And that is how successful Jews do business...

Friday, September 13, 2013

The ability to change and courage to grow

 adapted from chief rabbi Jonathan sacks Yom Kippur message 

Can people change or is it true that "a leapard doesn't change it's spots?"

The Greeks believed that we are what we are, and we cannot change what we are. They believed that character is destiny, and the character itself is something we are born with, although it may take great courage to realise our potential. Heroes are born, not made. 

Plato believed that some human beings were gold, others silver, and others bronze. Aristotle believed that some are born to rule, and others to be ruled. Before the birth of Oedipus, his fate and that of his father, Laius, have already been foretold by the Delphic Oracle, and nothing they can do will avert it.

This is precisely the opposite of the key sentence we say on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, that “Teshuvah, tefillah and tzedakah avert the evil decree.” 

That is what happened to the inhabitants of Nineveh in the story we read at Mincha on Yom Kippur. There was a decree: “In forty days Nineveh will be destroyed.” But the people of Nineveh repent, and the decree is cancelled. There is no fate that is final, no diagnosis without a second opinion – half of Jewish jokes are based on this idea.

Judaism is a system to develop a clear sense of human free will. As Isaac Bashevis Singer wittily put it, “We have to be free; we have no choice.”

This is the idea at the heart of teshuvah. It is not just confession, not just saying "Al chet shechatanu." 

It is not just remorse: "Ashamnu."

It is the determination to change, the decision that I am going to learn from my mistakes, that I am going to act differently in future, that I determined to become a different kind of person.

To paraphrase Rabbi Soloveitchik, to be a Jew is to be creative, and our greatest creation is our self. As a result, more than 5000 years ago, we see in Torah and in Tanakh, a process in which people change.

To take an obvious example: Moses , who stuttered .. We see him at the start of his mission as a man who cannot speak easily or fluently. “I am not a man of words.” “I am slow of speech and tongue.” “I have uncircumcised lips.” But by the end he is the most eloquent and visionary of all the prophets. Moses changed.

Judaism, through the concept of teshuvah, tells us that we can change. We are not predestined to continue to be what we are. Even today, this remains a radical idea. 

Many biologists and neuroscientists believe that our character and actions are wholly determined by our genes, our DNA. Choice, character change, and free will, are – they say – illusions.

They are wrong. One of the great discoveries of recent years has been the scientific demonstration of the plasticity of the brain. The most dramatic example of this is the case of Jill Bolte Taylor. In 1996, aged 37, she suffered a massive stroke that completely destroyed the functioning of the left hemisphere of her brain. She couldn't walk, talk, read, write, or even recall the details of her life. But she was very unusual in one respect. She was a Harvard neuroscientist. As a result, she was able to realise precisely what had happened to her.

For eight years she worked every day, together with her mother, to exercise her brain. By the end, she had recovered all her faculties, using her right hemisphere to develop the skills normally exercised by the left brain. You can read her story in her book, My Stroke of Insight, or see her deliver a TED lecture on the subject. Taylor is only the most dramatic example of what is becoming clearer each year: that by an effort of will, we can change not just our behaviour, not just our emotions, nor even just our character, but the very structure and architecture of our brain. Rarely was there a more dramatic scientific vindication of the great Jewish insight, that we can change.

That is the challenge of teshuvah.

There are two kinds of problem in life: technical and adaptive. When you face the first, you go to an expert for the solution. You are feeling ill, you go to the doctor, he diagnoses the illness, and prescribes a pill. That is a technical problem. The second kind is where we ourselves are the problem. We go to the doctor, he listens carefully, does various tests, and then says: “I can prescribe a pill, but in the long-term, it is not going to help. You are overweight, underexercised and overstressed. If you don't change your lifestyle, all the pills in the world will not help.” That is an adaptive problem.

Adaptive problems call for teshuvah, and teshuvah itself is premised on the proposition that we can change. All too often we tell ourselves we can't. We are too old, too set in our ways. It’s too much trouble. When we do that, we deprive ourselves of God's greatest gift to us: the ability to change. 

This was one of Judaism's greatest gifts to Western civilisation.

It is also God’s call to us on Yom Kippur. This is the time when we ask ourselves where have we gone wrong? Where have we failed? When we tell ourselves the answer, that is when we need the courage to change. If we believe we can't, we won't. If we believe we can, we may.

The great question Yom Kippur poses to us is: Will we grow, develop our emotional maturity, our knowledge, our sensitivity, or will we stay what we were? 

Never believe we can't be different, greater, more confident, more generous, more understanding and forgiving than we were. 

May this year be the start of a new life for each of us. Let us have the courage to grow.

G'mar Chatimah Tovah
(A good final sealing on the book of life! )

Understanding South Efrican Telivision

Friday, August 23, 2013

Life after Delivery!

In a mother's womb were two babies. 

One asked the other: "Do you believe in life after delivery?" 

The other replies, "why, of course. There has to be something after delivery. Maybe we are here to prepare ourselves for what we will be later."

 "Nonsense," says the other. "There is no life after delivery. What would that life be?" 

"I don't know, but there will be more light than here. Maybe we will walk with our legs and eat from our mouths." 

The other says "This is absurd! Walking is impossible. And eat with our mouths? Ridiculous. The umbilical cord supplies nutrition. Life after delivery is to be excluded. The umbilical cord is too short." 

"I think there is something and maybe it's different than it is here." the other replies, "No one has ever come back from there. Delivery is the end of life, and in the after-delivery it is nothing but darkness and anxiety and it takes us nowhere."

 "Well, I don't know," says the other, "but certainly we will see mother and she will take care of us." 

"Mother??" You believe in mother? Where is she now? "She is all around us. It is in her that we live. Without her there would not be this world." 

"I don't see her, so it's only logical that she doesn't exist." 

To which the other replied, "sometimes when you're in silence you can hear her, you can perceive her." I believe there is a reality after delivery and we are here to prepare ourselves for that reality...."

Friday, July 19, 2013

Sisters f mercy house of Prostitution

A man is driving down a deserted stretch of highway, when he
notices a sign out of the corner of his eye. It says,


He thinks it was just a figment of his imagination and drives on
without a second thought. Soon, he sees another sign which says,

that these signs are for real. When he drives past a third sign

curiosity gets the best of him and he pulls into the drive.

On the far side of the parking lot is a somber stone building
with a small sign next to the door reading, "SISTERS OF MERCY."
He climbs the steps and rings the bell.

The door is answered by a nun in a long black habit who asks,
"What may we do for you, my son?"

He answers, "I saw your signs along the highway, and was
interested in possibly doing business."

"Very well, my son. Please follow me."

He is led through many winding passages and is soon quite
disoriented. The nun stops at a closed door, and tells the man,
"Please knock on this door."

He does as he is told and another nun in a long habit and holding
a tin cup answers the door. This nun says, "Please place $50 in
the cup, then go through the large wooden door at the end of this

He gets $50 out of his wallet and places it in the second nun's
cup. He trots eagerly down the hall and slips through the door,
pulling it shut behind him. As the door locks behind him, he
finds himself back in the parking lot, facing another small sign:


Monday, June 24, 2013

I LOVE YOU, SWEETHEART (Effect of these 4 words)

A group of women were at a seminar on how to live in a loving relationship with your husband.

The women were asked, "How many of you love your husband?"
All the women raised their hands.

Then they were asked, "When was the last time you told your husband you loved him?"
Some women answered today, some yesterday, some couldn't remember.

The women were then told to take out their cell phones and text their husband: "I love you, sweetheart."

The women were then told to exchange phones and to read aloud the text message responses.

Here are some of the replies:
1. Who is this?
2. Eh, mother of my children, are you sick?
3. I love you too.
4. What now? Did you crash the car again?
5. I don't understand what you mean?
6. What did you do now?
7. ?!?
8. Don't beat around the bush, just tell me how much you need?
9. Am I dreaming?
10. If you don't tell me who this message is actually for, someone will die.
11. I thought we agreed we would not drink during the day.
12. Your mother is coming to stay, isn't she??

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Dad, can you give me $10?

A young Jewish boy asks his father:

"Dad, can you give me 10 dollars...?"

The father says:

"8 dollars ?....why do you need 6 dollars..?" 

Wednesday, January 23, 2013


If you can read this whole story without laughing then there's no hope
for you. I was crying by the end. 

For those of us who have lived in Natal, we know how typical
this is. They actually have a Curry Cook-off about June/July. It takes
up a major portion of a parking lot at the Royal Show in PMB. Judge #3
was an inexperienced food critic named Frank, who was visiting from

Frank: "Recently, I was honoured to be selected as a judge at a Curry
Cook-off. The original person called in sick at the last moment and I
happened to be standing there at the judge's table asking for directions
to the Beer Garden when the call came in. I was assured by the other two
judges (Natal Indians) that the curry wouldn't be all that spicy and,
besides, they told me I could have free beer during the tasting, so I

Here are the scorecard notes from the event:

Judge # 1 -- A little too heavy on the tomato. Amusing kick. Judge # 2
-- Nice smooth tomato flavor. Very mild. Judge # 3 (Frank) -- Holy ****,
what the heck is this stuff? You could remove dried paint from your
driveway. Took me two beers to put the flames out. I hope that's the
worst one. These people are crazy.

Judge # 1 -- Smoky, with a hint of chicken. Slight chilli tang. Judge #
2 -- Exciting BBQ flavor, needs more peppers to be taken seriously.
Judge # 3 -- Keep this out of the reach of children. I'm not sure what
I'm supposed to taste besides pain. I had to wave off two people who
wanted to give me the Heimlich maneuver! They had to rush in more beer
when they saw the look on my face.

-- Excellent firehouse curry. Great kick. Judge # 2 -- A bit salty, good
use of chilli peppers. Judge # 3 -- Call 911. I've located a uranium
pill. My nose feels like I have been snorting Drain Cleaner. Everyone
knows the routine by now. Get me more beer before I ignite. Barmaid
pounded me on the back, now my backbone is in the front part of my
chest. I'm getting pissed from all the beer.

Judge # 1 -- Black bean curry with almost no spice. Disappointing. Judge
# 2 -- Hint of lime in the black beans. Good side dish for fish or other
mild foods, not much of a curry. Judge # 3 -- I felt something scraping
across my tongue, but was unable to taste it. Is it possible to burn out
taste buds? Shareen, the beer maid, was standing behind me with fresh
refills. That 200kg woman is starting to look HOT...just like this
nuclear waste I'm eating! Is chill i an aphrodisiac?

Judge # 1 -- Meaty, strong curry. Cayenne peppers freshly ground, adding
considerable kick. Very impressive. Judge # 2 -- Average beef curry,
could use more tomato. Must admit the chil li peppers make a strong
statement. Judge # 3 -- My ears are ringing, sweat is pouring off my
forehead and I can no longer focus my eyes. I farted and four people
behind me needed paramedics. The contestant seemed offended when I told
her that her chilli had given me brain damage. Shareen saved my tongue
from bleeding by pouring beer directly on it from the pitcher. I wonder
if I'm burning my lips off. It really **** me off that the other judges
asked me to stop screaming.

Judge # 1 -- Thin yet bold vegetarian variety curry. Good balance of
spices and peppers. Judge # 2 -- The best yet. Aggressive use of
peppers, onions, and garlic. Superb. Judge # 3 -- My intestines are now
a straight pipe filled with gaseous, sulphuric flames. I am definitely
going to **** myself if I fart and I'm worried it will eat through the
chair. No one seems inclined to stand behind me except that Shareen.
Can't feel my lips anymore. I need to wipe my **** with a snow cone

Judge # 1 -- A mediocre curry with too much reliance on canned peppers.
Judge # 2 -- Ho hum, tastes as if the chef literally threw in a can of
chilli peppers at the last moment. (I should take note at this stage
that I am worried about Judge # 3. He appears to be in a bit of distress
as he is cursing uncontrollably)­. Judge # 3 -- You could put a grenade
in my mouth, pull the pin, and I wouldn't feel a thing. I've lost sight
in one eye, and the world sounds like it is made of rushing water. My
shirt is covered with curry which slid unnoticed out of my mouth. My
pants are full of lava to match my shirt. At least, during the autopsy,
they'll know what killed me. I've decided to stop breathing - it's too
painful. I'm not getting any oxygen anyway. If I need air I'll just
suck it in through the 4-inch hole in my stomach.

Judge # 1 -- The perfect ending. This is a nice blend curry. Not too
bold but spicy enough to declare its existence. Judge # 2 -- This final
entry is a good, balanced curry. Neither mild nor hot. Sorry to see that
most of it was lost when Judge #3 farted, passed out, fell over and
pulled the curry pot down on top of himself. Not sure if he's going to
make it. Poor man, wonder how he'd have reacted to really hot curry?
Judge # 3 - No Report