I’ve seen a lot of articles floating through my social platform timelines regarding things NOT to say to women of certain ethnicities. What I haven’t yet seen, and yet I’m sure they are out there, are lists of things NOT to say to a Jewish woman.
There have been so many times I’ve been on the receiving end of some..um…unusual…compliments? And, I usually just smile and say thank you because hey, I’m not about to start an argument with someone who thinks they are being nice. And, I’m sure their intentions are perfectly innocent and sweet.
1. You don’t look Jewish. Yeah, that’s supposed to be a compliment, I think. I’m not sure, in this day and age, what a Jew is supposed to look like. We shed our horns, forked tongues and all that other good stuff. Oh wait, we never had them to begin with.
2. Don’t Jews have big noses? Or..you have a small nose for a Jew. Or..did you have a nose job? Noses, my friends, come in all shapes and sizes. It’s an unfounded stereotype to say that it’s exclusively a Jewish thing. Because, it’s not. In fact, most of my Jewish friends have small noses. Or maybe they had nose jobs that I never knew about?
3. You’re so pretty for a Jewish girl. For real, that has been said to me. I think my reaction was to blink a few times and let my jaw hang open. Um..yeah. Thanks?
4. You’re married to a doctor, right. OR..you’re married to a lawyer, right? Me? Nope. Not even close. I’m married to a school teacher. We aren’t rich, which seems to be another misconception about Jews. In fact, we’re the working poor but that’s a story for another time.
5. You have such pretty, Jewish curls. Not all Jewish women have curly hair. Me? I’m lucky because I have curls. I love my hair. And, just because someone has curly hair doesn’t mean all Jewish women do.
6. I have a Jewish friend, her name is (insert Jewish sounding name here): There are a lot of Jews out there and chances are, we don’t know all of them. But hey…her last name sounds familiar. Maybe because it’s a Jewish one? Oh and, good for you. I have a Jewish friend, too.
7. Hey, you’re Jewish. That’s cool.: Thanks. I’m glad I have your approval.
8. Ignore my parents, they were raised differently than they raised me. So they don’t like Jews? Hey, that’s cool. Why don’t you just come over to my house then.
9. I Jew’d someone down: Friends don’t say that to their Jewish friends. Well, some do. Really, it’s great that you were able to snag a great deal on something. But hey, you’re not Jewish and you’re being the cheap one. When us Jews try to get a good deal, we negotiate. We don’t ‘goy’ someone down. We don’t ‘gentile’ someone down. We NEGOTIATE a great deal.
10. You don’t act Jewish. Okay. So. Yeah. Um. Hm.
I know there are more but these are 10 little ones that have been said to me, on numerous occasions, throughout my life. So, I just thought I would try to answer these questions on behalf of all my other Jewish friends.