Sunday, March 13, 2011


Apparently I don't look Jewish.

This has been told to me in different ways.

Some people seem kind of congratulatory.

Others seem suspicious, like I am not telling the truth.

Some get angry, like I have sneakily formulated my unJewish looks just to annoy them.

And some get freaked out, like oh my god, they're everywhere.

Of course, these aren't the only responses I get from people when they find out I'm Jewish. There are much, much weirder ones.

I guess it was a nice sentiment.

This happened when I was working a quit-smoking line. Apparently I don't sound Jewish either.

My cousin had an even weirder encounter...

Twenty minutes later....
 Of course, I have it easy, since I only seem to have bizarre encounters. My older relatives and friends had things much harder.

My cousin, who's now in his 70s, had trouble finding an engineering program that was accepting Jews.

He did become very wealthy and the house in Connecticut is gorgeous. He actually did sleep in Marilyn Monroe's bed once, but she wasn't there. It's a long story.

And then this kept happening to my friend's mom...

... but what can you expect from Texas?

Anyway, I've come up with a guide for Jewish women who want to look more Jewish... because really, sometimes when people tell me I don't "look Jewish", I think they're expecting something like this:


  1. And then there was that one year that we dyed Easter eggs because you never did before. Because you're Jewish. Even though you don't look it...

  2. okay, this is creepy. I think I look too much like the expected Jew. Drat...KS

  3. I just love those adorable Christian Zionists.

    This reminds me of the summer I spent living in the Bible Belt of Indonesia, and one day spent a long hour rolling my eyes as a fervent evangelical insisted that I accept my role "one of God's chosen people".

    Other curious reactions I got in Indonesia to the revelation of my Jewishness:

    "Oh, wow. Jews are very intelligent!". .

    "The Holocaust happened because Jews refused to accept Jesus's divinity." (this one from a Christian minister)

    "Jewish... Is that like Catholic?"

  4. That second quote above should read:

    "Oh, wow. Jews are very intelligent!" (dramatic pause, followed by conspiratorial glance)

  5. Hee hee. KS, I don't think you look much like the expected Jew. Not enough money, bling, challah, or children. And last I saw you, your glasses were quite fashionable.

    <3 MRV

  6. This one guy says, "wow, you're not like any Jew I've ever met. They're so selfish."

    Another guy (who had been in the Aryan Brotherhood) says, "Jeez, cut that effin' beard off, you look like a gd Jew." "Um, I am a Jew." "Oh."