“Good for the Jews” is Pretty Good for DC

David Fagin and Rob Tennenbaum perform their Christmas song, "Reuben, the Hook-Nosed Reindeer" at the DCJCC / photo taken by Rachel Mauro

David Fagin and Rob Tennenbaum perform their Christmas song, "Reuben, the Hook-Nosed Reindeer" at the DCJCC / photo taken by Rachel Mauro

It was raunchy, it was funny, it was stupid. It was basically everything I would expect from a couple of “boychic” men whining about sexually frustrating bar mitzvahs and the inability to score with Jewish babes. 😛

You either loved or hated the humor of David Fagin and Rob Tennenbaum’s Good for the Jews–least that’s the impression I got from overhearing the audience’s mumblings during and after the show, which took place Monday night at the DCJCC. One thing you can definitely say about the boys was that they definitely didn’t shy away from their audience. The houselights were on and off repeatedly as they asked us questions, heckled those of us who were too un-amused or too Christian, and at one point, Tennenbaum climbed over a few rows of chairs in order to serenade an engaged woman with a song about why she wouldn’t go out with him.

The humor ran a little dark, but they promised us that they could go darker. 😛 It was quintessential American Jewish humor—“I only know four Hebrew words, and three of them are ‘shalom,’” these self-proclaimed “lite beer” Reform Jews quipped at one time. They also sang about JDate, trips to visit their parents at Boca Raton, and hating Jews for Jesus.

(My personal favorite song was their Passover-themed “They Tried to Kill Us, We Survived, Let’s Eat!”—with the audience, of course, joining in on that last part. 😛 Kudos, guys! I’ve been trying to convince my mother for years that that line is a legitimate way to describe the majority of our holidays, hee.)

Speaking of Passover, how is everybody doing on their seder plans? GesherCity, sponsored by the DCJCC, is organizing satellite meals for those of us unable to go home. Click here to sign up for night one and here to sign up for night two. More info on community seders will be forthcoming!

For more information on Good for the Jews, check out their MySpace page! (By and by, Fagin’s black tee with the “good for the Jews” pig on front, and Tennenbaum’s frilly, silk number that should’ve died in the ’70s seem to be a part of their ongoing schtick. Hee.)

Upcoming Events: March 29-April 4

Shavua Tov! Below, I’ve compiled a list of Jewish events I’ve found to be going on next week. Please feel free to comment with any others, and I will add them. See you around town!

Sunday, March 29

Café K Annual Yiddish Seder
http://www.jccgw.org/articlenav.php?id=339

New Freedom Seder for the Earth
http://www.jufj.org/event/new_freedom_seder_earth

Growth of Secular Humanistic Judaism
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=284949

Gesher: Community Family Fun Day
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=124686

Adat Shalom: Climate Change Lecture
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=277434

Beth El’s Women’s Seder
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=125086

B’nai Shalom Film Festival
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=206740

2009 Labor Seder
http://www.shomreiadamah.org/?page=events

Monday, March 30

Let’s Talk About It: Jewish Literature
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=246535

Good for the Jews Play
http://thejdc.convio.net/site/Calendar?view=Detail&id=107861

Tuesday, March 31

Jewish Twenties and Thirties Four-Minute Dating Party
http://www.jewishsocials.com/index.cfm?CityId=1&action=events&event_id=6080#Event6080

Launch Event: Genocide Prevention Month
http://www.sixthandi.org/EventDetails.aspx?evntID=146&dispDt=3/31/2009%207:00:00%20PM

Muriel Bowser Event
http://www.jcouncil.org/site/Calendar/305202783?view=Detail&id=102501

Dancing Alfonso
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=297304

Jewish Stories for Younger Children
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=127537

Wednesday, April 1

Charoset Around the World with Sheilah Kaufman
http://www.jccgw.org/articlenav.php?id=305

2nd Annual LGBT Seder
http://thejdc.convio.net/site/Calendar?view=Detail&id=108821

Thursday, April 2

The Toni Awards
http://www.jccgw.org/articlenav.php?id=301

How to Cook a Passover Dinner with a Spanish Twist
http://www.jewishpro.com/eventdetail.php?id=53

Fair Purple Line Working Group Meeting
http://www.jufj.org/event/fair_purple_line_working_group_meeting_1

Michael Walzer’s Exodus and Revelation
http://www.sixthandi.org/EventDetails.aspx?evntID=124&dispDt=4/2/2009%207:00:00%20PM

B’nai B’rith/Sixth & I Trivia Night
http://www.sixthandi.org/EventDetails.aspx?evntID=140&dispDt=4/2/2009%207:00:00%20PM

Friday, April 3

Pre-Passover Potluck
http://www.birthrightisrael.com/site/Calendar?view=Detail&id=160243&whence=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.birthrightisrael.com%2Fsite%2FPageServer%3Fpagename%3Dnext_local_dc_announce

Women’s Philanthropy Presents Women Coming Together
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=187343

Saturday, April 4

NCAA Final Four Company
http://thejdc.convio.net/site/Calendar/?view=Detail&id=108981

The Economy For Young Professionals Is Looking Up!

Graphic courtesy of theshockzone.com

Graphic courtesy of theshockzone.com

Isn’t that a great line to hear on a Tuesday night amidst all of this recession? 😛

This was the general consensus at a B’nai B’rith (my work)-sponsored lecture at the Romanian Embassy this evening: The Global Economy and the Young Professional.

Jon Heisler, of Bernstein Global Wealth Management, briefed us on the current ups and downs of the money situation, as well as general projections for the near future (bottom line: it’s gonna get better. :D) He had a great slideshow with bright visuals and a little “test” on making investment decisions. (The stock market, we learned, should be a long-term investment, and one should not make hasty decisions with one’s funds, based on the day-to-day realities.)

The audience seemed very enthusiastic, and far more learned on the subject of finances than I am. 😛 It was a fun time.

Ambassador Adrian Vierita spoke briefly to us before the presentation, touching on Romania’s relationship with the U.S. and Israel. The embassy was just beautiful, lush and inviting, and there were finger foods to nibble on as well. Yum.

To learn more about B’nai B’rith’s young leadership group, check them out on Facebook here!

Upcoming Events: March 22-28

Shavua Tov! Below, I’ve compiled a list of Jewish events I’ve found to be going on next week. Please feel free to comment with any others, and I will add them. See you around town!

Sunday, March 22

Family health fair
http://www.jccgw.org/articlenav.php?id=323

Ary Stilman reception
http://www.jccgw.org/articlenav.php?id=322

So You’re Hosting a Seder… Now What?
http://www.sixthandi.org/EventDetails.aspx?evntID=119&dispDt=3/22/2009%2011:00:00%20AM

Spike up the Matzah
http://www.sixthandi.org/EventDetails.aspx?evntID=131&dispDt=3/22/2009%206:00:00%20PM

Family Nature Walk
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=275827

Climbing your Family Tree: Program on Genealogy
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=278352

Israel Then, Now and in the Future
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=228190

Women’s Chocolate Seder
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=275428

Agudas Achim concert and dinner
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=273975

Chabad art show
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=254384

Monday, March 23

The Greek Shoah Experience
http://www.jcouncil.org/site/Calendar/60196603?view=Detail&id=102561&whence=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.jcouncil.org%2Fsite%2FPageServer

Northern Virginia Hebrew Congregation Speaker: Michael Makovsky
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=272896

Tuesday, March 24

Holiday Highlights: Passover class
http://www.birthrightisrael.com/site/Calendar/1212101133?view=Detail&id=118901&whence=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.birthrightisrael.com%2Fsite%2FPageServer%3Fpagename%3Dnext_local_dc_announce

B’nai B’rith Young Leadership presents Global Economy and the Young Professional
http://www.bnaibrith.org/YPN_Embassy_3_24.cfm

Fearless cooking
http://www.jewishstudycenter.org/classes/index.htm#16

NextbookDC presents: Etgar Keret
http://thejdc.convio.net/site/Calendar/2081419435?view=Detail&id=105601

Wednesday, March 25

Idan Raichel Project concert
http://www.birthrightisrael.com/site/Calendar/1212101133?view=Detail&id=159921&whence=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.birthrightisrael.com%2Fsite%2FPageServer%3Fpagename%3Dnext_local_dc_announce

Jewish cultures around the globe: India
http://www.jewishstudycenter.org/classes/index.htm#14

Twenty-Eight Years in the Making: Birkat Hachama
http://www.jewishstudycenter.org/classes/index.htm#27

Berlin Memorial to the Murdered Jews
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=290390

The World of Sefardic Judaism
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=275645

Thursday, March 26-Friday March 27

Great Gesher Used Book Sale
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=272106

Thursday, March 26

JCRC/NoVa Community Annual Spring Meeting
http://www.jcouncil.org/site/Calendar/60196603?view=Detail&id=102581&whence=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.jcouncil.org%2Fsite%2FPageServer

Laura Elkins: The First and Me Opening Reception
http://www.sixthandi.org/EventDetails.aspx?evntID=123&dispDt=3/26/2009%206:30:00%20PM

ZOA Mission to Capitol Hill
http://www.thecollegezionist.org/washington.html

Meet the artists: Idan Riachel and Kabra Kasai
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=290746

An evening with David Polonsky
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=290674

Friday, March 27

Guatemalan Cuisine at Temple Emmanuel
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=277529

Facets of Secular, Humanist Judaism
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=284943

Yoga and Contemplative Shabbat Service
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=274008

Saturday, March 28

Handel’s Israel in Egypt
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=291838

Dick Hyman, jazz piano
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=290212

Exploring different “routes” to being Jewish

Routes participants shmooze between learning sessions / photo taken by Rachel Mauro

Routes participants shmooze between learning sessions / photo taken by Rachel Mauro

There’s no possible way that the entirety of Judaism can be contained in one day, but the Partnership of Jewish Life and Learning’s program: Routes: Exploring Jewish Together did a pretty good job of covering the highlights.

Hundreds of DC-area Jewish adults gathered at GWU’s Marvin Center on Sunday for seven hours of lectures, discussions, film, dance and more on ways to live Jewishly. Was a fascinating way to spend a cold and rainy day!

I tried to diversify my lecture selections—I started with a panel on intermarriage at noon, then went to a discussion on Moses and the idea of “ger,” being stranger/other, fast-forwarded a few thousand years to Israel and Hamas, made way for discussion about the meaning of Gd, prayer and ritual, and finally ended on the active note of Israeli dance.

But these were just a smattering of the programs available, including Kaballah, parenting, the Holocaust and more—with dozens of local and national Jewish educators presiding. My biggest complaint might be the impossibility of attending them all!

There were also yummy kosher bagels downstairs for our enjoyment. I was hungry. 😛

The Routes program was a great way to bring lots of new people into the fold for a taste of Jewish life, but PJLL actually has a diversity of more long-term adult learning programs. Check them out here! We are indeed fortunate to live in an area with the resources to prove that cultural education can be a lifelong pursuit.

Check out the “Routes” Facebook page here!

Cross-posted in part to the Examiner.

Upcoming Events: March 15-21

Shavua Tov! Below, I’ve compiled a list of Jewish events I’ve found to be going on next week. Please feel free to comment with any others, and I will add them. See you around town!

Sunday, March 15

Routes: Exploring Jewish Together
http://www.pjll.org/article.php?id=544

Return to Naples: My Italian Bar Mitzvah and Other Discoveries
http://thejdc.convio.net/site/Calendar/1119085688?view=Detail&id=105721

Sunday Funday
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=265521

Living History Show and Exhibit opening
http://www.jhsgw.org/programs/

Darfur Interfaith Vigil
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=284929

Being Jewish in France
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=272487

Young Leadership Event at B’nai Tzedek
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=181207

Religion in the Public Schools
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=281239

Tikvat Israel’s Cantor Concert
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=229483

Talmudic Eccentrics
http://www.jewishstudycenter.org/classes/index.htm#15

Purim Party
http://www.jewishfriends.org/calendar.html#0315

Monday, March 16

As We Forgive
http://www.sixthandi.org/EventDetails.aspx?evntID=99&dispDt=3/16/2009%207:30:00%20PM

Building Bridges: A Networking Event
http://www.birthrightisrael.com/site/Calendar/1285955222?view=Detail&id=153341&whence=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.birthrightisrael.com%2Fsite%2FPageServer%3Fpagename%3Dnext_local_dc_announce

Let’s Talk About It: Jewish Literature
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=246534

Tuesday, March 17

Sulam Annual Event
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=204908

Neal Bascomb, “Hunting Eichmann” author
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=251953

Compelling Jewish Ritual Webinar
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=277462

Jewish Presence on the Web
http://www.jewishstudycenter.org/classes/index.htm#6

Wednesday, March 18

Classics for Pleasure with Michael Dirda
http://www.jccgw.org/articlenav.php?id=325

Archeology Lecture Series: Behind the Camera
http://www.jccgw.org/articlenav.php?id=307

The Pommegranate Event
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=16243

Papercutting Workshop
http://www.jewishstudycenter.org/classes/index.htm#13

Thursday, March 19

Progress by Pesach
http://www.birthrightisrael.com/site/Calendar/1232436053?view=Detail&id=161601&whence=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.birthrightisrael.com%2Fsite%2FPageServer%3Fpagename%3Dnext_local_dc_announce

Israel’s Achievements
http://www.jccgw.org/articlenav.php?id=336

Biava Quartet in concert
http://www.promusicahebraica.org/nc_1.html

Shomrei Adamah Book Club
http://www.shomreiadamah.org/?page=events

Friday, March 20

Progress by Pesach
http://www.birthrightisrael.com/site/Calendar?view=Detail&id=153361&whence=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.birthrightisrael.com%2Fsite%2FPageServer%3Fpagename%3Dnext_local_dc_announce

Shul Hop to Adas Israel
http://www.jewishfriends.org/calendar.html#0320

Temple Emmanuel Tot Shabbat
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=274324

How Wondrous Are Thy Works?
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=278132

Friday, March 20-Saturday, March 21

Rabbi Tirzah Firestone at Am Kolel Sanctuary
http://www.shalomdc.org/calendar/index.aspx?id=75&eventid=274140

Around town with DC area Purim parties!

Chag Sameach/Happy Holidays! The festive holiday of Purim just ended at sunset. Sure, it’s famed for the old Jewish adage “they tried to kill us; they didn’t succeed; let’s eat,” but Purim itself is a very silly holiday, arguably the silliest of Jewish holidays, where religious leaders dress up in costume and lead services to popular theme songs, where performers mock Bible stories (really, the story of Esther) right in front of the congregation, and everyone is encouraged to drink until they can’t tell the difference between “blessed is Mordecai [good guy]” and “cursed is Haman [bad guy]” (accompanied by groggers and loud booooos!)

And have I mentioned the hamentaschen? 😛

But here’s a real Purim gift for all of you—a slideshow of three Purim parties! Featuring JSC’s famed Latke/Hamentaschen Debate, GLOE’s Purim Masquerade, and finally, the Megillah reading and spiel at Adas Israel.

While you gentiles were going through an ordinary day, come see what the DC Jews were up to. 😉 Enjoy!

Click here for the slideshow!

Crossposted to the Examiner.