Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Ongoing Saga of My Jewish Class

I take a class, it's an upper level "core" or general studies class. We choose two classes to our liking in two different categories with three categories from which to choose. I previously took a class in Paradoxes, now I'm taking this class in the Jewish Diaspora.

Well, there's been little snotty comments and looks from various students in the class. I would say these come from students who are either A) older or B) FFB.

The first incident was with an older lady, in her 50's. She was one of the people I exchanged Emails with within the first couple classes. One day, I'm leaving class. I was on my way to restroom. She calls to me, "Nicole.." I was wondering what in the world this woman wanted with me but I figured it wouldn't be good. What can't wait and be Emailed to me? She wanted me to sit and read the reading to her. Oy, Vey! I told her I had to go to the bathroom. So, I actually recorded it for her and Emailed it to her. I had to read it anyway. She acted all weird about that. Also, I Emailed the group that exchanged Emails including her about it but I didn't give her name. The next class she snapped at me and told me not to give out her Email address-except I had already Emailed out that group, plus, I thought the whole group was on point that we were trying to exchange Emails with people in the class. Walking out of that class together in the hallway she said to me something about me not being Jewish. I said, "No, I am Jewish."  I told the story to a certain friend/blogreader who said, "it's called conversion." I wasn't going to throw this woman such a bone. I'm Jewish-end of discussion. Besides which, why COULDN'T I be a BT? Ok, I have an Irish last name, but still.... I could be a product of intermarriage with a Jewish mother and non-Jewish father. I could have changed my name. I actually did, but my original last name wasn't any more Jewish. It was English. Grrrrrrrrrrrr!

The other older lady was kind enough to start her crap today while studying with myself and a Muslim friend of mine who's in the class. Previously, there was an incident with "looks" in Hillel. I came in to get a burger and I saw she and another classmate begin to speak to each other with looks on their faces wondering what the hell I was doing there or whatever. It was a lot of looking at me and looking at each other. Ok, whatever. Well, today, class was cancelled. However, my friend and I made plans to meet in the classroom to study on the chance that anyone else wanted to meet with us to study. This other older lady came so she studied with us. At one point, she says to me, "you're a convert, aren't you?" I told that to a Sephardic not religious Jewish friend of mine after my other class and her jaw hit the floor that someone was so rude to do such a thing. Oh, please, I deal with this all the time. The woman went on to tell my Muslim friend (I don't think she knows we're friends because we don't sit together since my friend didn't see me on the first day until seats were pretty full then our professor told us to sit in the same seats) that people convert for marriage so no one likes converts and if they converted not for marriage it's worse because then we have no idea why they bothered. I really should have told her that I have Jewish ancestry, but way back. I probably do, but tracing my ancestry, I get stuck with my great grandparents who came from Germany.

Things like this make me wonder why the heck I took the class. I really debated it. I guess in the end I was hoping that the class might even tip my love-hate relationship with Judaism back to the love side of the scale. I really should have known better. Maybe I'll get blog fodder out of the course work at some point. Actually, I have one that I will post when I have time. I will also get to blogging about the FFB eventually.


  1. 1. great blog! thank you for your posts.
    2. if i was in your place, i would so ignore people who pick on how Jewish you are. or tell them you know what, "i'm more jewish than you are". in short, don't answer their questions in any way b/c then they want to ask more q's, and if she says to others you're a convert, you should tell her whether you are a born jew or a convert, that's none of her business. only a rabbi can ask you such questions and even then only for halachic purposes. it's a sin to remind a convert about where they're coming from. and i would complain to the prof. too she is discussing your private life. that's harassment. if she is reform or conservative, she may as well not even be a halachic jew. kol tuv.

  2. Michal,

    I'm Jewish by birth, I became Shomer Mitzvot about 12 years ago, & although I'm SOO not perfect, most Jews behavior, religious or otherwise, are such an embarrassment to me.( Did I mention I'm SO not perfect, either? I did? OK, good.) Don't get me wrong, I know a few who are also Spiritual Royalty, but we could do so much better.

    I'm sorry people are giving you crap. Unfortunately, I've had to learn to NOT mistake the Jewish people for JUDAISM. Judaism is where it's at, sadly alot of us couldn't care less about road maps.

    Hatslacha V'brachas. Have a wonderful, Meaningful Purim!!

  3. Wow, what a CU Next Tuesday.