Between the Oscars, Tonys, Emmys, and Grammys, there are at least 36 televised celeb awards a year. Thirty-six for the sung, unsung, should never be sung, to “Oyyyy, he’s singing the opening!”

But not one of these critically-kicked VIPPY events are given for Jewish Achievements in the Arts.

JEWBEES – for Outstanding Artistic Contributions by MOTs

So I say we create – The JEWBEES – for Outstanding Artistic Contributions by MOTs. The winners would receive a crystal bagel-shaped award in Eastern European elegance (a few onyx “sesames.”) So put your feet up, get comfortable, grab a nosh and get ready for this year’s 37th award ceremony.


And the winner is: Austria

Runner-up: Sweden

Last November, Israelis Dana Stralinkov, 14, and Alona Komarov, 13, won the gold and bronze medals respectively at an international fencing competition in Austria.

As per custom, the national anthem is played at the award ceremony. Expecting to hear theirs the girls stood – in shocked silence. Nothing.

So, We Jews took care of things the way we usually do. Ourselves. The teens and the 22 person Israeli delegation burst into Hatikva, “the Hope.”

Now what on earth could have gone wrong? According to an Austrian official in charge of the thing, he just couldn’t find a recording of the Israeli anthem. Right. What …? The lying dummkopf lost it between Djibouti’s and Kyrgyzstan’s?

In yet another dig over Israel’s status, there was a similar incident in Sweden the preceding June. But, in fairness, there’s a country who’s given us Death Metal, ABBA, Kn?ckebr?d and Red Gummy Fish. Sadly, they also have a depression problem, offset only by their occasional wild and wacky sense of humor – when they lose things. Like herring and Hatikva.

So, to all you Austrians who “lost” Hatikva, I suggest you change your own anthem from Land der Berge (Land of Mountains) to Land vom Schimpflichen (Land of the Shameful)


Winners: Swedish Neo-Nazi and Five Poles

December 18, was a sunny morning over Auschwitz (now the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and State Museum), the massive Polish camps of horror. History’s most infamous death machine which has long been in desperate need of appropriate renovation, was missing something else.

A sign. THE sign. “Arbeit Macht Frei” (Work makes you free) that “welcomed” its victims as they entered – and over a million Jews never left. For We Jews and lovers of justice everywhere, the sign became iconic. It epitomized ultimate perversity – the inhumane fraud and duplicity behind those walls, dedicated to “the work” of Jewish genocide with the “freedom” to torture and murder.

The determination to find the sign became a virtually unprecedented priority. Within 48 hours, it was retrieved – in three pieces. The theft, committed by five Poles, was the “brain-child” of Anders Hogstrum, a Swede who is said to have founded and led the Swedish neo-Nazi National Socialist Front in the 1990s. He intended to make a fortune by selling the sign to an English collector.

We’ve covered the obvious “awfulness” of this incident. But more. Is it just me or is this “plan” less baked than the Pillsbury doughboy. First, the idiots broke it. Now, true, dismantling could be a disguise. But would even the biggest Jew-hating goniff plotz with joy over one “Arbeit,” and maybe a “Frei?” And then there’s “placement.” Where would he put it with “pride?” I actually once met a Jew-hater with his own personal Nazi Museum which he kept in a dank bunker by his basement toilet. Finally, did this arrogant Swedish Nazi and his Poles think they were stealing a marble rye? That We Jews wouldn’t find it before Shabbos? It would take ScotlandYard longer to find the crown jewels. This plot is so insipid, so hysterically stupid, I say we turn it over to “Borat” who’ll show the world what happens when Jew-hating half wits take on the Hebrews.


Winner: Dick Heyman, McMurdo Station, Antarctica

And we made up jokes about praying on the moon what with the spinning and mishegoss of day and night? You don’t have to lift off to do the Shabbat impossible. Try Antarctica. When Heyman, the information technologist, and chacham led the first Shabbat service last January on this gigantic frozen research popsicle with “Blessed are you, endless one, who makes the evenings fall,” he was missing one thing. Evening. It was “daytime” – since August. When, then, should he give out the prayer books he printed, have the oneg, with the wine, and challah he baked for the small group? February?! Shabbat, determined by the movements of sun and stars– can only be found in The Jewish Twilight Zone at the South Pole. In the 18th century, the Vilna Gaon determined that in such cases, we should follow Jerusalem’s solar calendar.

Wha ...? No good?

According to Rabbi Michael Paley, of the Jewish Resource Centre of UJA-Federation of New York, the law extends only to land contiguous with Israel. Even for us, 10,000 miles might be a stretch. What to do? Rabbi Paley’s psak is simple: let the community decide! (Are We Jews full of common sense or what?) Heyman used the sundown of the nearest community. (Would you believe, it’s Christchurch? I’m serious. Look up New Zealand.)

Done? Not quite. Which way is Jerusalem? When it comes to direction, the South Pole is so farmisht (or we are) it needs a grid system, none of which points you directly to Jerusalem. The decision? Face true east and Think Jerusalem!

Just between us, I think Hashem was doing a little pre-Shabbos knee-slapping. Known to have a mighty sense of humor, Hashem may have figured that if the Goyim make a plump old man shlep a billion toys from the North Pole in 24 hours on reindeer (one with a problem yet), how hard could it be to hold a Shabbat service down South?


Winner: The Czech Republic

For centuries, the Jews of Prague have had a “dynamic” relationship with Czechoslovakia, now the Czech Republic. The 16th-19th centuries saw a Czech Renaissance, in which Jews such as Franz Kafka contributed mightily. After Germany’s “acquisition” of the country, along with the Holocaust, then Communism, Jewish-Czech relationships have been spotty, to say the least. Anti-Semitism was by and large not dealt with, laws relating to talking about the Holocaust went back and forth. Incidents continued until the year 2,000. Today, though anti-Semitism exists, it’s somewhat peripheral of late, and the small Jewish community is starting to revive. Half of its 3,000 registered Jews live in Prague. (Estimates of total Jews are about 18,000.) And, we’re getting action! A recent example:

In May, a Czech court sentenced three defendants to from six to 14 months in prison for posing in a picture with a Nazi flag. The photo was taken in a bar in 2004 during a party, and then showed up on Web site, Antifa, a leftist organization. Finally! A Czech official recognized the Swastika as a “party” theme can really be -- a “RIOT.”


Winner: : cHanooka. (cha -nook-ah).

Settling on a universal transliteration of the Festival of Lights can cause more mishegoss than settling on a recipe for making a matzo ball. Just seeing the blue and silver paper causes Jews and non-Jews alike to toss their fine point, grab a black marker, and smudge HC&N*CKA – in script. Here are just a few of the contenders. “Chanaka,” ” Hannakah,” “Channaka,” “Hannukka,” “Channakka,” “Hanuka,” “Chanakha,” “Channakah,” Hannuka,”“Chanukka” ” Hannukkah,” Hanakah” “Channakkah,” “Hanakkah,” “Hannukka,” “Chanuka” “ Hannakkah.”

So, my fellow MOTs, can we settle? After giving this years of thought, I’ve come up with “cHanooka. (cha -nook-ah) – emphasis on the first syllable. Speaking of which, “cHa should sound like the last two letters of “Bach” (the composer), add a giggle, which gives us “cHa.” Then, “nook” as in ... “nook.” For the final “A”, think “Ah, now this is living!” And you’ve got the perfect little “ah” flourish. In fact, why not create a jewlarious holiday game for the kinder: “KASPINNER.” An 18-sided object, each side with a different spelling of the holiday – and a task (e.g.: “sing all the words to Dreidel, Dreidel” are assigned varying amounts of choco-coins, by adults based on … not much. Of course, landing on the “correct” spelling (mine) is Big Bonus time. (Oh, and given our creative spellings, the KaSpinner should be made of sponge and larger than a challah!)

P.S. If you can do better, post your award in the comment section below