20 November 2005

Chilling With Gentiles

Ok, so I don't often 'hang' with gentiles - it's not that I'm racist or anything like that, please, it certainly is not that, it's just that I don't often find myself interacting with them - so when I do, it is of significance to me. So, when I went to my friend, Ryan Jolley's b-day party (guy from my town, Gahanna, who's now living in Manhattan and who's mother is a Jewess), he had quite a number of non-Jews there.
Initially when I got there, I was the first one there, which was cool, as we got to watch the recorded OSU-Michigan game, having arrived about an hour after it was supposed to have started. It was fine for a bit, just chilling, watching the game. A little while later, people start coming, then more, then more. As people kept on coming in, I kept meeting new people. What was interesting to me was - please, don't accuse me of being narcissistic - me and my sociability. There were were over twenty (more than thirty?) people, easily, and I knew everybody's names, and for some, their places of origin, undergrad school, and current occupation. I was complimented several times with my knowledge of peoples' names, which was nice, and the main social theme of the night.
Another point of interest of me was that I was confident! Especially when people asked me what I do and the subsequent questions that followed therefrom. I take this approach to social interaction largely from Chabad shlichim I have met that are largely positive, confident, and secure in their identities. It really shows that that's how one is, and I found it to be truly a קידוש השם (something which makes Jews look good (lit., sanctification of the Name), and wanted to emulate it - and finally put that into action!
Totally randomly, I was complimented on my eyelashes! It has been years since that has occurred.
All in all, it was interesting, and definitely not my normal element, but it was good to experience that. Unfortunately, I was already tired before I had gone and thought I would just stop by for a half-hour, maybe hour - no, I ended up there for much longer.
Good night.


Aliza "La Jewminicana" Hausman said...

Oh, I see, so I'm never going to be invited over to see Firefly because I'm a "g." Racist...sniffle, sob, sob.

Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...


Did someone say Firefly?

I hung out with my Non-Jewish and/or Jewish Non-Observant group of gamer geek friends from college last night. It's always somewhat angsty to know that they've been hanging out since early Saturday afternoon, and taking the subway/train out for an hour to get there is just making the Not-Until-After-Shabbos delay so much longer...

Anonymous said...


I think you're a pretty open-minded guy who likes to experience different things. I was glad to see you went to the Domestic Violence presentations. So please, please, please..
Leave off the "ess"--Jew"ess" Lawyer"ess"
If his mother is a Jew you know she's got to be female since she's his mother. If you need to say female lawyer that's okay. I find the "ess" really offensive, and otherwise you seem like you understand at least a little something about gender politics. By adding the "ess" you insist on making the male the norm. The nice thing about English (as opposed to Hebrew, or French) is the lack of gendered words...

Drew Kaplan said...

Oh, come on - I didn't imply that I didn't like hanging out with gentiles, it's just that there's some sort of uncomfortability on my behalf as they are other (I remember a lesbian girl in my summer class saying that she doesn't feel as comfortable around straight people.), plus you're converting anyways. Moreover, you most certainly can still come over for Firefly - I just have to figure out some time to watch it.

Yes, someone I know in the neighborhood lent me the entire season of Firefly on DVD to watch. If you want, you, too, can come over for whenever I decide to watch it - maybe this upcoming T-giving weekend.

I am not insisting on making the masculine the norm. I only insist on proper language use. It may be that English has no explicit gender divisions in their words as do other languages. I think it is largely related to my studying of the languages you mentioned that I have been influenced by the gender distinguishing. Especially in this case the direct translation of יהודית as Jewess. I do understand your underlying point that men often see themselves as the norm and women as different, but I do try to make the effort to decenter that androcentric perspective.
BTW, although you congratulate me on my attending the domestic violence panel, I don't think it has to be a women's issue, per se - I think it's a family issue. Nevertheless, you are correct that I do take more of an interest into topics relating to women than others.

Anonymous said...

I agree with anon - you really need to stop with the "ess" unless it's still a commonly used word in our American vernacular (and the only thing I can come up with is "actress" versus "actor" and you'll still find a number of people only saying "actor"). In fact, in certain professions the names of jobs have been changed for this reason: waiters/waitresses are now servers, firemen are now firefighters, and stewards/stewardesses are now flight attendants. We're in America and speak modern day English - figure it out already!

That's great that you got to see Ryan - GO BUCKS!!!

And yay Firefly! (Since I helped introduce you to it.)

Drew Kaplan said...

I suppose it's owing to my formalistic tendencies that I opt to go with perhaps some more outmoded lexicon forms than do others (not to mention my geekiness). Nevertheless, I also recognize that a language is good only insofar as people use it (what that does with dead languages I don't know). So what do I do with my affinity for archaisisms?

Anonymous said...

"I suppose it's owing to my formalistic tendencies that I opt to go with perhaps some more outmoded lexicon forms than do others (not to mention my geekiness). Nevertheless, I also recognize that a language is good only insofar as people use it (what that does with dead languages I don't know). So what do I do with my affinity for archaisisms?"

I don't see any problem with "waitress", "actress", or even "stewardess", but "lawyeress" is not a word I have ever heard in my life. So I searched for the entry where you used that word, and I saw that, far from an "archaic formalism", it was a neologism of your own coinage! Use whatever words you like, but it's a bit rich to talk about "my formalistic tendencies", "outmoded lexicon forms", and "archaicisms" with regard to a word that you made up yourself.