This week’s Torah portion detailing the elaborate costumes worn by our ancient priests brings to mind a vivid childhood memory! I will never forget the day when I was in the sixth grade, and I wanted to wear khakis and sneakers to a service at the Temple. My mother was horrified.
“You can’t go like that,” she pleaded! “You look like a schlump (ragamuffin). And what are you going to say when the rabbi sees you!”
“Don’t worry, Mom,” I answered. “The rabbi is not going to see me because I will just slip in through the back entrance!”
Mom decided that this issue wasn’t worth an all out war with her headstrong son. As I was slipping in through the back stairs to the sanctuary there stood the rabbi.“Sneakers to temple,” he remarked, unhappily. “Very nice!”
I was mortified, of course, while wondering how my mother had become clairvoyant.
Times have changed, but …
There has been a sea change in standards of dress since that long ago day! Now kids come in their soccer uniforms, torn jeans and Tee shirts
“Be glad they are there at all,” people admonish. I am. But still I wonder …
Isn’t there something to be said for wearing something a little bit nicer to synagogue than what you wear the rest of the time? I think there is! Neat looking khakis and sneakers like those I wore that day long ago would be just fine!
2 thoughts on “Mortified! (A thought about Torah portion Tetzaveh)”
I think it’s because I was raised in a home that was more European than American, so we were more formal in general when it came to dress. I just don’t feel comfortable going to services in jeans (or symphony, or Saturday night dinner out).
Neither do I, CJ, thanks!