Four Simcha Peeves

I don’t know what the rest of you think, but these irritate me, in no particular order.

The “floating handshakers”

You are in Shule on Shabbos for a call-up or a Bar Mitzvah. Suddenly, usually during Krias HaTorah and thereafter, pockets of people come into shule and either walk straight up to the Bima and/or to the Ba’alei Simcha and extend their hands to say Mazel Tov. If you are lucky, they will finish their circumvolution of the Shule and then exit. Mostly, they or someone else who ought to be listening or davening, will find a reason to begin a new conversation. They have already davened. The Ba’al Simcha wasn’t special enough for them to actually daven in the Shule/Minyan where the simcha was taking place. A “Groise Toyve”, they perform and in the process they thoroughly disrupt any semblance of decorum that might have existed prior to their bold entry. I’ve seen people who object to Schnorrers disturbing the Davening. I reckon the “a bi yotze tzu zein” do-gooders who come for a hand shake are equally disturbing. What should you do? I suggest saying, “Good Shabbos, Oh, you must have had another Simcha to attend?”

The “never on timers”

People spend a lot of time, effort, not to mention money, on trying to create a good party for a Wedding or Bar/Bat Mitzvah. They often set cocktails+finger food for 6:30 with entry at 7:15 ish. Why is it that at frum functions, almost exclusively, people turn up just before the main course, between 8 and 8:30pm? Isn’t this rude? Is it nice when half the hall is empty because every shlepper and shlepperen can’t bring themselves to rock up on time? I’m not talking about some ludicrous functions where Chossen and Kallah turn up at 8:30pm because they have driven around Melbourne in a limousine for hours. I don’t know about you, but a Simcha starts when they enter. Before that, it is just weird to start washing and participating in Simchas Chossen V’Kallah (entree) with no Chossen or Kallah in sight! At non frum functions, people have good manners and come on time.

Shlomo Carlebach and band

The “incessant chatters”

This group of people, both men and women, talk and talk and talk. It doesn’t matter who is speaking or what they are saying, 99% of the time (and yes, I do know) they yap and display shocking manners at frum simchas. I hasten to add, that it’s also a big chillul hashem. Why? Because there is always someone at the Simcha who is not yet frum, or even a goy. They look at this behaviour and wonder why “these people” have no manners whatsoever. (Thanks to Bet Shemesh, they will now call them “Charedim”) By the way, this behaviour is almost exclusively at Simchas where there is a Mechitza for the seating. Why so? Some surmise it’s because if you place a pack of “boys only” or “girls only” around a table, that’s what happens. When they sit together, for some reason, they don’t behave that way. Perhaps the husband or wife kick their partner under the table, I don’t know.

The “entrance mob”

There are people who do the Ba’alei Simcha a great favour, even after they come late. No sooner have they had their meal and a drink or two, and they exit,  standing around in the entrance. It is literally teeming with the same people, who do so at every simcha. Are they so depressed that they cannot bring themselves to just be nice and dance the first 10 minutes of each bracket? And before you start telling me “it’s because the music is too loud”, get a life. These people hang out jn the entrance when there is no music. It makes absolutely no difference. Sure, some will step out for a fag, but it isn’t about that. This is about bad manners again. Oh, and if you are wondering, it doesn’t happen at non frum Simchas.

What gives?

Author: pitputim

I'm a computer science professor in Melbourne, Australia. I skylark as the band leader/singer for the Schnapps band. My high schooling was in Chabad and I continued at Yeshivat Kerem B'Yavneh in Israel.

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