With fear at a heightened pitch in Montreal, Stephen Harper has gotten tougher on crime this year. Murder, drug trafficking, kidnappings, shoplifting, gang banging are all on the rise – and now, it appears that High Ho’s are invading the city! With the decriminalization of medical marijuana and of prostitution, there are fears that this is a pan-Canadian phenomenon! High Ho’s are everywhere and the word is that they are particularly horny for the Jews amongst us!
For many, the arrival of the High Ho’s (aka Rosh Hashana, Yom Kippur and Succoth) marks the holiest time of year. A time for reflection and growth and renewal. Of reconnecting with friends and with community. Others would prefer to just get high and do it with a sex-worker. For some of us, both of these are true!
The first Hebrews didn’t initially thrill to the idea that they were part of a community whose leader was at a one-man Pow-Wow with God. We all know how the story goes. Moses was a stenogragher for the “we are a spiritual-ethical-one-God-only- community” while the kids at base camp were fashioning a huge Schwartz’ smoked-meat sandwhich out of gold.
If the ancient Hebrews were afraid, alienated, avoiders, sinners, in love with beauty and idols, and jonesing for an awesome party with a huge golden calf disco ball and a hot DJ….then it is no surprise that some Jews today don’t gush over the coming of the High Holy Days, and expect a month filled with alienation, boredom, fear, excitement, confusion and a host of other fun activities. If you don’t speak Hebrew and haven’t learned the holy dance and don’t really get what folks are saying in synagogue or why they are bowing now and hopping then ….well, all of a sudden, you might feel like you are part of a cult (of really nice and loving community members and all) and that if you were looking at you from the outside, you’d be calling for an intervention.
The push and pull of religion is never more present then at this time of year. Rosh Hashana, Yom Kippur, Succoth- the big guns are all upon us and they pull at our tribal heart strings and they ask us to reflect and to do ritual and act as if we are whole-heartedly part of this ancient Jew parade.
Dear readers, Shtetl wishes you all a new year full of peace, of risk-taking, of knowing thy self, of loving your neighbours whoever they may be, whatever religion they are or language they speak. May this year be full of highs- and not all substance-induced ones- and full of good food, soulful moments, wild dancing, deep talks with friends. May you read TONS of articles on Jewish arts and culture and may you get down to all the cool and eclectic semitic tunes out there.
Shtetl wants to hear from you. What does “observing” the High Ho’s mean to you? Have you ever gotten high or had “unkosher” sex during this holiday season? Any other alternative, traditional, or hybrid way in which you get down with the High Ho’s?
Anyone who leaves a comment will not only be guaranteed a spot in the Book of Life but can also win a copy of The Socalled Movie, free pair of tickets to Le Mood on October 14th, a pair of tickets to the hot Parisian Arthur H with Montrealer Daniel Isaiah at POP, or a pair of tickets to Peaches DJ Extravaganza also at POP Montreal. We’ll do the draw from the succah at Cinema L’Amour on Sept 19th and let you know if you won by email.
Happy Holidays y’all!
Editor of Shtetl Magazine
Host of Shtetl on the Shortwave