This past Sunday, 600,000 Haredi (ultra-Orthodox) Jews marched the streets of Jerusalem to protest the proposed “Haredi draft” that would see thousands of Yeshiva students drafted into the Israeli army.
Another mass protest was organized in Manhattan and 50,000 black hats showed up to demonstrate against the occupation.
Against learning an occupation, that is. The draft will probably take regardless of how many Yeshiva students tie themselves to their lecterns by their Tzitizit, or Israel will face a financial crisis due to the multitude of Haredim who sit and learn rather than acquire a skill.
With that in mind, Jewbellish Haredi draft insider Yaacov Dubrow has released the early rankings of the 15 top prospects for the Haredi draft, and scouts are salivating at the mass influx of pure talent joining the Israeli army, an influx of talent that can be compared to the fall of the Soviet Union for the NHL and NBA, the abolition of the Baseball Color Line and Jackie Robinson’s entry to the MLB, and the emergence of elite role models like Ben Roethlisberger, Michael Vick, and OJ Simpson to the NFL.
Without further ado, here is Dubrow’s early mock draft featuring the top ranked Yeshiva students heading into the 2014 Haredi Draft.
1. Yonkel Klippershmeerer – 5’7, 169 pounds
Strengths: At only 17 years of age, Klipperschmeerer is already a certified Mohel with over two hundred circumcisions under their belts. The experienced young man has already dodged laser-guided heat-seeking pissiles, lost the use of two fingers in a training injury, and been awarded a “purple part medal” for bravery. Klipperschmeerer was once addicted to social media until his Facebook friends started tagging him in every photo of rude looking fruits and vegetables. He is a weapon from any corner, field line, and in the slot, no matter the size of the basket. He is blessed with a wicked curveball. He is also very adept at getting away with minor infractions when the referees are looking away, such as “double dribble,” “highsticking,” “clipping,” and “chop blocking.” He is rarely caught offsides, and his play when he has the ball in the zone is nothing short of spectacular. In the 2013 season he got 60 sacks! Plus, he always tips over 20%!
Weeknesses: Klipperschmeerer was a late cut from the Olympic team after a ballsy move in which he singlehandedly took on an entire team of 30-year-olds from Honduras.
Dubrow’s projection: With the unique ability to use any weapon at his disposal, be it an axe, stapler, chopsticks, or a paper clip, the Egoz Infantry Unit would be willing to trade numerous assets to acquire his talent.
2. Anschel Meyer Brenner – 6’0, 200 pounds
Strengths: When building an army unit, you start with a powerful foundation. Brenner is an elite power-forward with exceptional leadership skills. Brenner has an intuitive sense and offensive awareness of when to throw rocks (on Shabbat), and when to sit tight (weekdays). He picks his battles well, and can be placed in any situation. His fastball has been clocked at 112 mph.
Weaknesses: Brenner is a member of the radical anti-Zionist Neturei Karta sect, and needs proper coaching to channel his talents.
Dubrow’s Projection: Brenner is close friends with some of the world’s leading terrorists, and has kissed the stubbly cheeks of numerous Holocaust deniers. The Mossad would love to use his services in the undercover spy position.
3. Chananya Lipa Schlesinger – 6’6, 194 pounds
Strengths: Schlesinger brings a wide array of unique talents to the table. As a 13-year-old Yeshiva student he managed to procure no less than 6 passports, a stash of 497 free Parker pens from repeatedly applying for life insurance information, and accumulated over 15 billion air miles on his platinum visa card despite never leaving his home town. At 14 years of age, he was renting cars and trading on the stock market. He currently studies 13 hours a day, yet still somehow finds time manage six companies and organize business expos for the greater Haredi community. And he is only 17 years old.
Weaknesses: He may be ruthless on the playing field but his physical game is sorely lacking. He also gets way to much mail for a Yeshiva student.
Dubrow’s projection: Schlesinger would be a good fit with Tzahal’s strategy division
4. Faigl Timbit – 5’5, 67 pounds
Strengths: Timbit belongs to the Lev Tahor cult, AKA the Jewish Taliban, who cover their women from head to toe so they can’t escape. Exterior aside, Timbit is one tough cookie who has traveled around the world as a young girl trying to flee from concerned relatives and officials of the child protection services of various countries.
Weaknesses: No one is sure what Timbit’s actual age is. She may be too young for the army, a toddler even. Or, she might be in her late 80s. Who knows? Maybe she’s even a guy!
Dubrow’s projection: The Kidon assassination unit of the Mossad would like to place her somewhere she can easily blend in, like Afghanistan. Also, she could become a legend as “the killer whose face has never been seen by a living person.”
5. Chaim Zeilig Geisinsky – 6’2, 284 pounds
Strengths: Geisinsky is always in the mix of things. He is at the center of every scrum, ruck, and pile up. He is the most active member of his local Hatzolah volunteer EMS medical service, and the top responder of the Chaverim organization. He is very proficient at multitasking, carrying 6 radios with him at all times, 2 sets of emergency lights, a car starter kit, and a siren. A utility belt holds up his sagging pants, with holsters for 12 cell phones and 2 beepers. He can play several positions, be it a “short stop” when seeing an accident, or a “safety” when serving his Shomrim duties.
Weaknesses: Geisinsky is very out of shape. He’s so out of shape that he cannot zip up his black leather Hatzolah jacket that he never takes off. He even wears it to weddings. And funerals. In the shower, too. Also, he has worn the same pair of pants for the last 4 months. We know this because once, when he bent over an accident victim to check the pulse, they ripped at the seams, exposing his Hatzoloh logo underpants, and the rip can still be seen every time he bends over a critically injured person.
Dubrow’s projection: He may lack flair, but Geisinsky gives full effort every shift. It’s a safe bet that he will be drafted by the medical corps.
6. Menachem Mendel Lax – 5’11, 200 pounds
Strengths: Lax is a member of the Chabad Lubavitch sect of Hasidim, born and raised in a remote town in Bangladesh. At 17, he has vast experience having served as a member of Tzivos Hashem (“G-d’s army”) in countries around the world including Bermuda, Antarctica, Saudi Arabia, and the Vatican. He is a celebrated 5-star general of Tzivos Hashem who has won the much coveted “Moshiach medal” for outstanding bravery sustained when he wrapped a dying man in Tefillin while under heavy fire during the Darfur Genocide. His abilities include a passion for waving flags, a relaxed demeanour in pressurized environments, and a tenacity so relentless that he once chased a man to the top of Mount Everest in order to hand him a pamphlet about the 7 Noahide laws.
Weaknesses: Most of Lax’s weaknesses come down to off field distractions. His continuous struggles with alcoholism are well-known, and he has a reputation for chasing women, trying to convince them to start lighting Shabbos candles. When play was “called dead” in a recent game, Lax went into a severe state of denial even though the play was obviously dead. He also does not like to play “capture the flag.”
Dubrow’s prediction: One cannot discount Lax’s vast experience in a tank. He is one of the few to have driven a (Mitzvah) tank through Manhattan, and it is evident that the Israeli Armored Corps covet this talented Haredi.
7. Shmuelik Brown – 6’0, 355 pounds
Strengths: At 355 pounds, Brown is a prototypical linebacker known for his skills at brewing a mean Cholent. His main asset is his explosiveness, and his blistering shooting skills which can overwhelm goalies. Several of his blasts have shattered the glass, earning him the nickname “Boom Boom Brown.” In the 2013 season he had 12 grand slams, and at one point was “on fire” for three straight weeks, during which he registered 21 SBDs! When most of his teammates are gassed, he always has plenty left in the tank, and his occasional flashes of brilliance are truly staggering.
Weaknesses: Despite his impressive statistics, Brown has a large strike zone, and has had struggles with his consistency. Nonetheless, his pedigree has sky-rocketed and it would be very surprising if he were to drop out of the first round.
Dubrow’s projection: Boom Boom Brown is an intriguing prospect. The scent he gives off screams “tank unit,” but scouts are expecting the Dimona Nuclear team to make a big splash in order to acquire this extraordinary squirt of giant proportions.
8. Chatzkel Groner – 6’3, 177 pounds
Strengths: Groner is the most naturally gifted player in this year’s draft. He is also the fastest, has the most accurate shooting percentages, and has elite offensive and defensive awareness. He is a leader in the locker room, always giving his teammates a good laugh, and possesses superb intangibles. His specialty is the alley-oops.
Weaknesses: Groner is very injury-prone. In 2010, he missed 3 months with a broken toe after standing too close to the groom when it was time to break the glass. He then missed a week after suffering second degree burns on his arm from holding the Havdalah candle at the wrong angle and getting wax all over himself. In 2011, Groner twisted his finger trying to find the Shmitchick between the grill to open the hood of his car. Then, he sat out the rest of the season with heart palpitations after being informed that the local supermarket will no longer be selling kosher lox. He caught a cold in 2012 from going outside without the sweater his Bubby knitted for him and missed 3 weeks, then had to be placed on long term injury reserve for getting poked in the eye by a careless Hasid shaking his Lulov. In 2013, he broke seven teeth biting into a piece of Matzah, lost circulation in his arm from wrapping Tefillin, and mistakenly tried on a lice-infested Sheitel (wig). In total, he has been healthy for 6 days over the last 4 years. He also suffers from chronic neurosis and has severe allergies to gluten, dairy products, nuts, and bolts.
Dubrow’s projection: It is doubtful Groner will ever play, considering his position on the draft. “My mother gets very upset when there is a draft,” he says. “She always tells me ‘would you close that window, Chatzkel?’” Regardless, Groner is worth the gamble, and many scouts believe that the tunnelling squad would be willing to risk their pick on him.
9. Sefira Ainsoff – 5’6, 118 pounds
Strengths: Ainsoff comes from a long line of Kabbalists, and is considered one of the draft’s hottest prospects. It has been said that elite players have an innate sense of how things are going to play out on the field. Ainsoff possesses this quality, fuelled by an inner voice, namely her dybbuk. Ainsoff can be placed in many situations, depending on who is controlling her at the time. She has otherworldly intangibles, and leads her league in ESPs. She also possesses an ability to create plays out of nothing. In fact, she has created three Golems who intimidate opponents. Overall, she is a spirited player with transcendent, angelic talent.
Weaknesses: Like most athletes and contortionists, Ainsoff is highly superstitious. She refuses to play during a full moon, and insists on entering the field through a funnel. She also spreads toenail clippings all over the visiting team’s locker rooms, and has sat out several matches because “the metaphysical energies are prevalent.” She has a study session with Elijah the Prophet every Wednesday night until the wee hours of the morning, which renders her to moments of fatigue. Also, her midnight shrieking can sometimes get quite cacophonous.
Dubrow’s projection: Ainsoff seems destined for the Parapsychological Warfare Department of the IDF.
Strengths: Katz currently has a job as a Schnorrer, and his talents are unquestionable, as he has raised over two million dollars for several dubious organizations. He knows how to take advantage of every opportunity, and will do anything to get his quarterback. He has excellent vision, and can identify weaknesses in any play. Mentally, he is able get into the heads of his opponents, and make them pay. He fights for every inch of the field, and is a takeaway artist. He is persistent, and constantly in your face.
Weaknesses: Opponents have figured out that Katz can only score from the free throw line. Also, he has a horrid release, and severe attitude problems. One time, when he was sent to the penalty box, he started shaking it while mumbling that he was looking for “Tsedakah.” He also likes to hog the ball, and sometimes runs off the field with the ball, never to return.
Dubrow’s projection: The Israeli Army can use Katz’s spunk and tenaciousness. Their logistics department can use his fundraising experience, though all his fellow staff will soon be penniless.
11. Wolf Ber Rothweiler – 6’5, 252 pounds
Strengths: For the past four years, Rothweiler has served as an assistant to the Grand Hezboller Rebbe. Often seen in the bullpen, this massive specimen knows how to chirp teammates and taunt opponents. As one of the leaders of the feared Vaad Hatznius, he has written up numerous “Pashkevilin” (anonymous letters) warning members of his community to dress appropriately (women: elbows and knees covered, kevlar stockings, no bright colors, shave eyebrows, no teeth whitener. Men: zip up your fly). He also has an extraordinary talent of being able to easily blend in with the Gentiles by simply tucking his long, curly sidelocks under a blue Yankees cap.
Weaknesses: Sometimes, Rothweiler can get too aggressive. As a member of the Vaad Hatznius, he organized a band of Hasidic men to surround a woman who walked around the neighbourhood in Crocs. These men would encircle her when she left her home, ensuring that no one would G-d forbid see her toes. He also doesn’t know basic math, as is evident from his recent quote, “I always give 110%!”
Dubrow’s projection: Rothweiler is expected to be drafted by the Hasbara, Israel’s Propaganda Experts. Therefore, you can expect Gaza City, Beirut, Ramallah, and Damascus to be flooded with posters and black and white printouts informing residents that 75 Imams will pray for them at the Dome of the Rock if they send a donation to the IDF. Another letter will undoubtedly be signed by those 75 Imams, calling for a Jihad on Hamas and Al Qaeda operatives.
Strengths: Leah is a Balabustishe young woman who never Kvetches, is always polite, and finishes her entire plate of Farfel. Her Bashert need not worry because she will cook delicious meals. Leah wants to have a small family, with only 15 children Kenehora. Several prospective boys have asked about family planning, and let me tell you she has organized six Chol Hamoed trips for all 23 of us and each one has been a joy.
Weaknesses: Sometimes Leah gets too involved in her Chesed projects. She also tends to put everyone else in front of herself. Maybe I’m biased, but she doesn’t have any other weaknesses.
Dubrow’s projection: Wait, what? Where’s the section on this Shidduch resumé to put her references? Oh, it’s a DRAFT???? No, my Sheifaleh would NEVER join the WNBA! But listen, if this ever gets published, please put in that my daughter looking for a doctor who is at least 6 feet tall, and is also a Mentsch.
13. Noach Eisenkopf – 6’2, 175 pounds
Strengths: Eisenkopf is a Breslover Hasid, who dances around the court with the ball. A flashy, popular player who is always happy, he likes to fly down the field and “give opponents the book.” He likes to play “high,” and has an excellent fadeaway.
Weaknesses: When he was younger, Eisenkopf was an unruly and rebellious child who once shocked his community by saying “Nachman.” Recently, he was caught with banned performance enhancing substances and his future is in jeopardy. Book it!
Dubrow’s projection: The Israeli Air Force were so excited about Eisenkopf’s capabilities and flying experience that they sent him an advanced draft notice while he was on a visit to Rabbi Nachman of Breslov’s grave in Uman, Ukraine. This broke several drafting rules, and the league had to enlist the help of the Russian army to invade Ukraine and prevent the IAF from selecting this very talented Breslover.
14. Yentl Gabner – 5’10, 200 pounds
Strengths: Yentl is connected. She knows every bit of information about everyone. Opponents are terrified of her, as she seems to predict their every move. Her coaches say that she has a great ear, and can hear what the other team’s bench is talking about even though it is on the other side of the field. Her work as a Mikva lady has taught her some of the fanciest dunks in her league. She spends hours studying video before each game, and has hundreds of tactics at her disposal.
Weaknesses: This section has been edited due to a last minute email we received from Yentl prior to publishing. And let the record state, it was a one time thing and I will never put on my underpants that way again.
Dubrow’s projection: Prisoner Interrogation Unit. Trust me, they want her.
15. Mechi Finkelstein – 5’10, 165 pounds
Strengths: Finkelstein sits and studies all day, but our scouts tell us he is an excellent hacker. He always looks sharp, clean-shaven, with the right amount of mousse in his hair, and a conservative tie. Lichoirah, he is Takeh Gevaldik and knows how to Shteig.
Weaknesses: Finkelstein is an enigma. He is very streaky, and recent scouting suggests that he’s gone through the freezer for the past few months and he hasn’t scored. Another weakness is that no matter where he goes, he always must have a lectern in front of him. Since being sponsored by Borsalino, his production has hit a snag and stagnated.
Dubrow’s projection: Finkelstein’s hocking skills have attracted the interest of the Cyber Warfare Unit and you can be sure to see him Shteiging away in front of a computer with his newly developed virus, the “ArtScroll Schottenstein edition of the ILOVEYOU virus.”
Honorable mentions: Prospects that nearly made it include Kalev Marx, a young man looking to start a Yeshiva Student Association that would serve as a union for all the draftees, Ita Berger, a linebacker from Frantic State, Aaron Baum, who works as a restaurant Mashgiach and due to clever superspy tactics has succeeded in uncovering 23 Kosher infractions thereby shutting down 17 restaurants and effectively putting his kosher certification company out of business, and Anonymous Internet Commentator, who is heavily sought after by Israel’s propaganda team.
By Jewbellish staff writer Yaacov Dubrow
Please note: this post is not intended to be pro-draft or anti-draft. It is simply a humorous take on the Haredi draft and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of its author.
Or shall we call it OyGa? We posted on our instagram about this new trend a few months ago. Thanks to another Jewish website, The New York Times, we secured amazing new images for you to enjOY. Wanna join this class?
From the Times:
In 1997, Rachel Kolberg was newly married, pregnant and living in Tel Aviv when she went to her first yoga class. It was a revelation. Her husband, Avraham, soon began practicing with her. “I was looking for some spiritual support,” he says. “Yoga gave that to me.” Seven years later, the couple opened their own studio, determined to introduce yoga to fellow Orthodox Jews in Beit Shemesh. They teach Iyengar yoga, a discipline that encourages the use of props to assist with poses. While yoga is increasingly popular in Israel, Avraham says, it is “revolutionary” in their neighborhood. Their students, taught in single-sex classes, are encouraged to come as they are, even in day clothes or long skirts, if necessary. The Kolbergs say yoga helps people who spend long days in prayer and study and aren’t physically active. But, Rachel says, “in our studio, we will never have practices that contradict our religion, such as mantras and chanting.” Julie Bosman
Year the Kolbergs opened their Beit Shemesh yoga studio: 2004
Students who practice at the studio each week: Roughly 100
Ratio of female to male students: Three to two
Pray ball! It’s that time of the year! For many fans, baseball IS a religion. For the Jewbellish fan, below is the official prayer by Coffee Shop Rabbi.
What team are you praying for?
Blessed are You, Eternal our God, Ruler of the Universe, who created human beings out of the clay of the earth, breathing into them the breath of Your life. You set within each human being a love of play, as well as a sense of fair play, and a desire for games that would satisfy both the body and the mind. From these human desires You brought forth baseball, a game of bats and balls played upon the diamond. It is an orderly game, as Your creation is orderly, and a mysterious game, as Your creation is mysterious, revealing to its devotees deep truths about Your world.
It is a game subject to times and seasons, and we give thanks for the fact that we are now at the beginning of the season of baseball. Amen.
It is a game subject to rules and statistics, and we give thanks for the Official Baseball Rules as well as their league variations, and also for the many statistics that add to the strategies of managers and the enjoyment of fans. Amen.
Even as one cannot achieve a five run home run, let our foes be unable to defeat us. Amen.
Even as no one can achieve a quadruple play, let them be filled with dread at the sight of our bats. Amen.
And when the forces of Light and Dark join upon the diamond field, let our players play uninjured and mighty. Let the crack of the bat and the roar of the crowd fill every ear and every heart, so that the words of the prophet may be fulfilled: Play Ball!
And when this season nears completion, when the dwindling hours of day reflect the dwindling number of teams in post-season play, let our team remain victorious to the last inning, so that we may glorify Your Name with the World Series trophy. Amen.
Blessed are You, Eternal our God, who enlivens our hearts with games.
About the Prayer: The opening of the new baseball season (Rosh Z’man Beisbol) is a major festival for many American Jews. Discussions on the holiday are recorded in Tractate Miskhakim (Games) and in Hilkhot Z’man Beisbol (Laws of the Season of Baseball) as well as in HaYachalom HaHakir (The Precious Diamond), a mystical work. The prayer that follow is from Sefer Greenberg, a book of prayers attributed to Jewish baseball great Hank Greenberg, although those skeptical Wissenschaft yekkies insist that it is a pseudapigraphal piece, probably written in about 5768 by a ba’al teshuvah in Detroit, most likely a Tigers fan.
There is disagreement as to whether this prayer should be said at the opening of Spring Training or on Opening Day. Consult a rabbi or your home team office for the minhag hamakom (local custom) upon this matter.
Many people know Alex Clare from his mega-hit: Too Close
But most people don’t know that he’s actually really high on the Jewbellish Meter.
Check out some video from an event last night where Alex made Havdalah after Shabbat.
The staff at Jewbellish are carefully collecting this footage to add to the equation of Alex’s Jewbellish Score. After watching this, early estimates put him at a whopping 8.2.
There are some funny Jews out there in cyberspace! Luckily, they all hang out in one spot. Twitter. Here’s are our favorite Jewish tweets from this past week.
It was so much easier to be Jewish before WebMD
— lisa goodwin (@LisaGoodwin1) February 26, 2014
And that is why I’m “married to the internet,” Mom.
What do you call someone from Israel that has to sneeze? A Jew — a giter Bachur (@aTvitterBachur) February 24, 2014
My nickname at work is The Neighborhood Jew — JEW CHAINZ (@jewfacekilla) February 21, 2014
Historically this has not ended well.
It must be pretty sucky for Hasidic Jews in Antarctica this time of year. The sun won’t be down until ~10pm. That’s a long ass Shabbat.
— Tim Pavlik (@fantavlik) February 23, 2014
Plus they’ll get a cold.
“Welcome to Shlemiels Anonymous. Everyone please have a seat.” *chairs fall over, smash into tables, beam gets crushed, building collapses*
— Zvi Hershcovich (@cholentface) February 25, 2014
About as successful as “Yentas Anonymous” turned out to be.