There are so many beautiful brachot, the blessings that make us appreciate the simple gifts we enjoy. So what are my fave Hebrew words to sing?
Borei pri hagafen, bitches!
I love that my people cherish wine enough to make a special carved chalice for it to toast each life-cycle phase. During a circumcision, wine is sipped when the ween is snipped. A bar mitzvah boy drinks as he becomes a man. A bride and groom partake of the cup as they join in holy matrimony. And much is consumed on a visit to the in-laws. So many of our holidays include wine—including our weekly Shabbat and, of course, Passover.
When I was little, long before I drank, I already loved chanting the 10 plagues and making the droplets on my Seder plate. Dam! Blood! That was the first one, and the wine actually looked like it. As the symbolic other nine came down the pike, I remember trying to keep them apart, but eventually my plagues all ran together in a cattle-disease-locusts-and-death-of-the-first-born red puddle. Later, when the four questions were far in my rearview mirror, I was delighted to actually partake in the guzzling. Speaking of which: Call me a highbrow oenophile (lots of people do), but this chick loves Manischewitz. When I drink it, I imagine douchey NoCal sommeliers dramatically swirling it in a glass, noting the tremendous nose of flamboyant cherry-kissed red oak: “This jammy table wine has top notes of Concord grape and… Robitussin.” Kind of a lot for Jews to pound four glasses of the stuff, but God commanded us to, so l’chaim!
Jill Kargman is the creator, writer, producer, and star of Bravo’s Odd Mom Out.