I just spent an obscene amount of money. O – B – SEEEEEEN cash on a wardrobe for 2 small children for a Bar Mitzvah weekend extravaganza consisting of a Friday night dinner, Saturday morning service, Saturday evening party and Sunday brunch. My task for the next few days is to return as much as I can and find alternative wear that is borrowed or cheap but does not make my children look like they had to pick through the leftovers at the Appalachian flea market. And for as often as I hear myself say, “My boys are NEVER going to have a Bar Mitzvah like this”, I know I can’t be sure. Every mom has repeated the same thing to me. “That’s what I said, too.” And then they send out invitations for their, son or daughter’s Jewish Coming Out Ball. I’m telling you, William and Kate got nothing next to Jews with Shekels, man. It’s just that one event – that one wedding for those reserved British types. One event? Pussies!
I bought 2 dresses for myself (on sale, of course), and I need to squeeze into the spring outfits that I wore a size or two ago. It’s a good thing I just spent all our money on clothing because I can’t afford to eat. If only I could sell my fat to starving children around the world. I’d make some cash. They’d have a little padding to tide them over until their next meal, and everyone would be happy. What?
While I’m driving from mall to mall doing the math in my head, I’m also adding notes to my Bar Mitzvah Planning File for our sons in 2016 and 2019.
BAR MITZVAH FILE
- Don’t spend what you don’t have. No really. Don’t.
- Don’t try to keep up with the Jones-enbaums. You can’t even afford the party favors, so don’t even try. Re party favors: see Hawaiian leis at Oriental Trading Company and save all Halloween candy from 2011 onwards (keep in chest freezer).
- At every Bar Mitzvah we attend, ask the bar mitzvah boy if we can have his suit after he’s finished. Someone is bound to give us one.*
- Videotape Bar Mitzvah dance parties and upload to YouTube. Play videos on wide screen at party instead of hiring DJ. Note: don’t forget to dub over names when DJ shouts out to the Bar Mitzvah boy.
- Consider a destination Bar Mitzvah. Somalia? Benin? Detroit?
*Gabriella reviewed this list and said, “You know that’s a good idea about the suit.”
I intend to keep the Bar Mitzvah file next to the Open The Day You Start to Shrink file.
YOU’RE OLD: PUT ON YOUR GLASSES AND READ THIS
- Wear a fucking hearing aid. Everyone hates having to repeat themselves more than 3 times – slower and louder with every repetition.
- Get a goddam driver and cut up your license. You think you can drive, but you CAN’T! You’re a menace and you are a traffic light away from killing some kid is on his way to get a suit for his Bar Mitzvah.
- If your doctor prescribes happy pills, take 2X the recommended dosage. Yes, life sucks when you’re old. Your body is breaking down. All of your friends are either dead or sick or just as miserable as you are. There is no way you can be happy without some serious medication.
- Keep your yap shut. Age does not necessarily make you wise. And even if you are smarter than everyone else, that doesn’t give you the right to tell everyone what you think about their children, their partners, their jobs or their lives. No one will want to take you into his or her home and take care of you when you are too old to wipe your own ass if you have been a cranky old bitch. If you don’t have anything nice to say, pop another Xanex and shut the fuck up.
Life provides one lesson after another, and it is up to us to learn those lessons and file them away for future reference.
Gabriella just left with the shopping bag of gorgeous and expensive clothes along with a receipt that was as long as a whale’s schlong.
While I know she’ll come home with outfits that are sufficiently stylish, I’ll always remember the ensembles that got away.