Posted on: October 13, 2011
Sukkot. Hmm…what to say, what to say. Do you remember my Sukkotlast year? It wasn’t a pretty picture. Even after the asshole on the street racially profiled and tried to over-sell me the holiday left a bad taste in my mouth. It’s the season where we are commanded, in Torah, to welcome the stranger. We say that a lot, welcome the stranger for we were strangers in the land of Egypt. Yet, when I’ve try walking into a “community sukkah” I never get greeted, I never get welcomed to a table, I do not feel welcome-I feel awkward. I’m bitter, I know, but it’s infuriating! Sukkot, in my mind, has all the potential wonderfulness (yes I said wonderfulness) of Purim or Pesach. Where Pesach is great for the history and tradition and Purim is great for the booze, Sukkot is kind of like the best of both worlds. We sleep in booths to remind us of when we were in the dessert + lots of food, alcohol and friends. If I had a back yard, I’d be in my sukkah now. But I don’t and I’m not and I’m pissed.
I am well aware that there tons of community sukkahs all across the city and in every borough. There’s a sukkah at Occupy Wallstreet, CBE is having a Sukkah Block Party, the “little shul that could” has a sukkah, and I’ll be spending the weekend with diverse Jews of varying ages for a Sukkot Retreat. I’m gonna get my Sukkot on, no doubt. All I’m saying is that it would be nice to have a Chasid approach me in Union Square to ask if I’d like to shake the lulav. It would be nice to roll into the Chabad Sukkah in Bryant Park and not have twenty wigged heads all turn to see what I’m up to.
Ranting aside, Sukkot is the only holiday I have not celebrated. Rosh Hashanah was beginning of 5772 but also marked the year-long observance of Jewish holidays, minus Sukkot. I’d just like to be able to go into a Sukkah, eat lots of food, talk about Torah and get all pagany shaking trees in four corners. Is that so much to ask?