Driveway Sukkah

Don't be left out in the cold.

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Comments (15)

(15) Mike, October 6, 2014 6:09 PM

very interesting

The reaction of the woman who was Jewish reminded me of something I read in this article

At the time I had three agents -- for commercials, for TV, and for print ads. I had to tell each of them that I was going to stop working because I was becoming an observant Jew. All three of my agents happened to be Jewish, non-observant women. So I knew it was going to be tough.

My conversion was scheduled for a Sunday, so essentially I had until Thursday to meet these people and break the news. I'm not a procrastinator, but this time I procrastinated until Thursday. The first agent had known that I was becoming more observant, and she had told me, "If you ever do that, I'm never going to talk to you again. It's just too weird…"

So I went to her office, expecting a big backlash. And surprisingly, she told me: "When I was in Hebrew School, I had one teacher who was observant, and she would invite me to her home for Shabbat. I always dreamed that when I grew up, I would have a home like that. But I know my fiance will never go for that. So I respect and admire what you're doing." And she gave me her blessing.
I was so relieved, and I went to the other two agents who were also unbelievably supportive. I had imagined that by the end of the day I would be in tears from an incredible sense of loss. But instead, I felt free, as if I was unburdening myself.

I find it completely strange and not logical at all that the first agent held totally opposite views within a short time.

So strange that with Jews who have some unresolved feelings towards religion or who have resentment, what they say that bothers them often has nothing to do with what they really mean or what really bothers them. I don't really understand it, sometimes it seems that they are just building a strawman, on the other hand all the anti-religious thoughts from the non-Jewish environment may also play a role.

(14) Anonymous, September 30, 2010 2:57 PM

SusanE, that was wonderful what you wrote. Thanks for sharing!

(13) SusanE, September 28, 2010 5:29 PM

Hmmm. Interesting.

Boy, Lori do I understand this woman. To me, sukkas are all beautiful and fun, and some are quite individual. To HER it was like living across from a 'tent' city. In HER thoughts, it's similar to having a neighbor in an affluent neighborhood putting plastic pink flamingos in the yard and an older rusty automobile in the driveway. She was embarrassed and uncomfortable because she is a Jew and is in that way associated with the rabbi and his sukkah. There are some like her who feel affront at seeing difference She wants 'to be like everyone else", and live among 'acceptable' practices. Short story. On a small train in Northern Italy sitting with a young man and his mother. As we pulled out of the station, she got food from her bag and offered me some. The young man 16 or 17, withdrew from the limited conversation she and I were having and turned his head to the window in embarrassment slouching in the seat. Knowing that sharing food is custom there among some, I pulled food from my bag also and shared with them. Immediately, his embarrassment of carrying food from home was over. From then on we had a wonderful time. We joked, drew pictures and laughed, getting to know one another. I hope your talk with the woman across the street helped her to think differently about herself and accept who she is. If that woman in your neighborhood could only open her heart to the wonderful possibilities ahead by accepting other peoples ideals, she might erect her own 'tent'. I hope she has learned through the years to be an accepting loving Jewish woman. Thanks for the story, Lori.

(12) Annie, September 28, 2010 3:05 PM

Not only will you be uncomfortable but... and your kids will end up assimilating So put up your Sukkah and chose Life and Love it! Thanks Lori for the influence you've had in Forest Hll, there are so many sukkas now we can't get around to them all; and there's a lot of sukkah hoping here!!

(11) Ayalah Haas, September 26, 2010 3:10 PM

Good Comeback with "Xmas Lights"

Thank you, Rebbetzin Palatnik. This is my favorite "Lori Almost Live" segment.

(10) Anonymous, September 26, 2010 1:11 PM


Thank you....

(9) Joel Batalsky, September 23, 2010 2:05 PM

Sukkot message

Great Sukkot message.

(8) Dennis Fassman, September 22, 2010 2:31 AM

Another terrific video! Thank you Lori! Dennis

(7) tilli, September 21, 2010 9:33 PM

dear Did you invite her,

maybe she refused to come? I know with our non observant family it was very unpleasant when they came for meals as they always made out as if it were so uncomfortable and unpleasant there.if people are determined to be anti doesn't help how wonderful you show them Judaism really is.

(6) Michael Wall, September 21, 2010 5:40 PM


I wish we had the open sky to move our Sukkah to the front yard. Be a light unto the nations!

(5) Bob Zinner, September 21, 2010 4:56 PM

I remember that Sukkah.

Dear Lori, Your comments and observations are spot on.I was there at that time of the driveway sukka, as a baal tshuvah, invited to your back yard sukkah.This was my first sukkah experience and I loved everything about it, as I longed to be Jewish in action, not just sentiment.The folowing year we built our own sukkah and it has remained the high point of our jewish year in festival celebration. Inviting non observant family is the best antidote to the estrangement you detected in your neighbour's comments.We have kept on inviting to our sukka and our shabbes table ever since,just as you did for us so many years ago.Thank you!

(4) PSLB, September 21, 2010 4:03 PM

Thank you, Lori!

Thank you, Lori, for another excellent video. I think you're right; sadly, I think many Jewish people are intimidated by Judaism. Perhaps they're concerned their lack of knowledge will be exposed, or maybe they're afraid of the committment and responsibility. But I wonder if maybe your neighbor was also concerned about looking "too Jewish"; that would be so sad, and a big burden to carry.

(3) sherri, September 21, 2010 3:50 PM

bet if she was invited over for a meal or even a snack in the sukkah, she wouldn't have found it so disgusting.

(2) Ellen, September 21, 2010 2:49 PM


Lori, your videos often make me laugh, sometimes make me cry, and always make me a little wiser. Thank you!

(1) Anonymous, September 21, 2010 2:22 PM

did you invite her?

two kiruv rabbi's across the street, with two sukkos and no one invited her for a coffee & cake. I don't get it.


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