Jtube: An Evening with Nichols and May: The Jewish Mother

What makes Jewish mothers so special?

Celebrated Jewish filmmaker and comedian Mike Nichols passed away this week at the age of 83. While most people probably have their favorite Nichols’ film – his Academy Award winning The Graduate perhaps at the top of most lists – we at Jewlarious will always remember Nichols for his portrayal of the Jewish mother on his show An Evening with Nichols and May. So if you love your Jewish mother and you love to laugh, watch this clip below. Do it for Mike and for your mother. What, it would it kill you?

What makes Jewish mothers so special?

This video encourages the discussion of Jewish values as they relate to contemporary culture. Jewlarious does not endorse any particular film.

Comments (119)

(94) Anonymous, February 8, 2019 5:08 PM

Total silence ............ so I have no idea what I might think of it!

Please check and let me know what (if anything) I am doing wrong. I have a perfectly ordinary michrophone, but not a sound escapes it on this site.

(93) Mira, January 24, 2016 10:48 AM

Love it

I love it and this sketch will never die because there always will be a mother like this and will send it to her children, thank God mine are perfect.

(92) Sarah, May 11, 2015 5:16 AM

First saw it at 30

My husband and I first discovered Nichols and May when we were 30 years old. (We are now in our early 40's). This clip was our introduction to Nichols and May and ever since we saw it, we were absolutely HOOKED on these two!! We were in tears when we saw this. (Big, belly laugh tears). If young folks don't understand this humor I am going to have to say you need to check to see if they have a pulse.

(91) David Berman, April 1, 2015 2:28 PM

Kvetch ?

Gotta kvetch a bissle or two oo, Gotta kvetch a bissle or two.!!

(90) Anonymous, December 11, 2014 7:33 PM

brought back cherished memories.

I do not think this clip would garner many laughs from an audience that is below the age of 60, and experienced Jewish Humor of that time. Times & people have vastly changed, but I am a senior mother, and I just loved the memories this clip elicited. Thanx Elly G.

Rivka, April 3, 2015 2:47 AM

Young people do laugh

I am under 60, sitting here with my son & his wife who are believe me WELL under 60, and they both laughed. The only people who won't laugh are those who have never known anyone with a neurotic mother. I'm sure there are some people like that, somewhere... (my son says, "add the word maybe.")

Vera, January 26, 2021 9:40 AM

jewish mother humor is ageless

Rest assured, I am well below 60 (still) and it seems 5 years since you have commented, and my own son is 20 and we have both laughed at this. In fact, my own mother could have been used to make this video, be her memory blessed. And now my father is doing his best to fill the void. :)

(89) Jim Byrne, December 9, 2014 7:46 PM

Elaine May looks strikingly like Mrs. Robinson from The Graduate.

I loved everything they did, especially MY SON THE NURSE.

(88) jay, November 28, 2014 11:35 PM

Not Just

Funny. And it doesn't just resonate with Jewish Mothers or sons!

(87) Shmuel Shimshoni, November 24, 2014 6:07 PM

So what's new?

What's better a son who doesn't call or even visit his mother because he's angry at her?

(86) Linda Hollar, June 17, 2014 3:24 PM


That's my mother, and we're not even Jewish! I've long loved Nichols and May. Genius.

(85) Anonymous, January 6, 2014 4:13 PM

hysterically funny!

Sounds exactly like me and my sons are good sports about it as well!

(84) Estistahler, January 3, 2014 5:08 PM

Too true. Even today. Now with cell phones kids only text

Too true even today. Now with cell phones kids only text. Even if they call they probably would have a hard time conversing . Soon it's going to be " mom ttyl "

(83) Harv Levy, January 1, 2014 6:03 PM

Why pain makes you funny

Pain doesn't make everyone funny. It makes some people mean. But Jews don't like to be mean. They will if they absolutely have to but it feels unnatural. Humor is a strategy that helps relieve the pain. Other ways of responding to pain are violence, substance abuse, social withdrawal, self-destructive attitudes and anxiety. Jews have high moral values AND few ways to 'look away' from lapses. Humor about our shortcomings without ignoring them. I had clinical depression for years and humor was an important part of getting through it. Often dark humor, but humor nonetheless.
Humor is a gift. I'm not sure I'd be here to write this without it.

(82) Anonymous, December 31, 2013 9:56 PM

Oy vey!

I think my one line summery say it all! Not that the video wasn't funny but as the Jewish mother of two sons and two daughters, I raised them to be independent, self sufficient individuals who are NOT required to call me, nor are my grand daughters! And I am TOO busy to call them! Unless necessary!

(81) Marjorie Gottlieb Wolfe, November 1, 2013 5:34 AM

What letters would be written to "The Bintel Brief" in 2013?

I give a 2-hour talk on the above-mentioned topic.

Bea, April 23, 2014 9:58 PM

lady who gives lecture on topic of Bintel Brief

where do you give the lectures

(80) pearl, October 12, 2013 2:19 PM

this is humor without smut

what else is new?

(79) rje, September 25, 2013 6:25 AM

not necessarily Jewish

If you listen more closely, you might notice that no one during the dialog ever says anything about being Jewish. I think this is a classic (very funny) commentary on how some parents, using guilt and guile, can turn a brilliant grown man into a babbling baby Of course he's brilliant; he's the proverbial rocket scientist!
Search for this couple online; they have more funny stuff.

(78) sydelle banks, September 12, 2013 1:34 PM

Be nice to me children, someday you too will be old.

(77) Me, July 22, 2013 12:16 AM

Why call?

Why call if these Jewish mothers complain all of the time.

Motl, September 25, 2013 5:39 PM

Oh! You're not jewish.....

Oh!... You're not jewish

Anonymous, October 7, 2013 10:53 PM

are you kidding? if you don't call, they suffer. if you call, they suffer. so, as long as theyr'e suffering, you may as well enjoy it with them. what else are children for?

(76) Samyyz, July 19, 2013 12:03 AM

Oy vayz Mia

I'm 76 years old and it seems like just yesterday...............

(75) Anonymous, June 7, 2013 4:24 PM

A Jewish Mother's Primary Concern: Worrying

Jewish Mother's are Worriers and are always

concerned about their children no matter how

old they are.

(74) Judy, June 5, 2013 10:21 PM



(73) Crusty Habnerpants, June 1, 2013 3:02 AM

My ma sent this to me.......

You should know from it!

(72) Sonia, May 13, 2013 11:32 AM

Great..and is true...sometime they never call.!!

(71) Anonymous, May 11, 2013 6:50 PM

I know, jewish mother guilt. But I am sending this on to an Italian friend. Their mothers are good at that also

Meryl, June 15, 2013 7:25 AM

jewish mother's guilt doesn't have a positive effect...

if a grown child really doesn't call their mother, there is a legitimate reason. Guilt is not the way to get your grown child to call you. Being honest and saying..."I know you're busy, but i would like to hear from u more often...or "it makes me happy when I hear your voice - even if it's only for a minute"

(70) Anonymous, April 3, 2013 6:09 PM

Funny then and just as funny now! They made a brilliant team.

(69) Ping J, March 24, 2013 5:25 PM

A wonderful site....new to me.

This is a wonderful site. A non Jewish friend sent it to me for a laugh or two, bless her and now I am turned on to Aish.com. P.S.
I got more than one laugh. Now, I will send it on.

(68) Anonymous, March 19, 2013 3:04 PM

old but oh so true!

Never gets too old!

(67) Chaya, March 19, 2013 2:20 AM

I know, I know

I hope that my son doesn't think of me that way!!!

(66) Marty, March 15, 2013 8:11 PM

I once called the phone company to see if there was a block on my phone from incoming calls

(65) Nate Einbund, March 12, 2013 10:47 PM

this is great

Just like my mother too!

(64) Anonymous, March 12, 2013 4:37 PM

so nowadays it's a simple text on the mobile phone. Nu? It was my birthday and all day I checked my cell to see if the volume was up and vey not one word..

(63) geri schwartz, March 8, 2013 10:35 PM

boy, was that funny and so true

I can really relate to that, even though my 3 daughters live in Israel, i usually call them. when I call my oldest daughter she always says:" I was just going to call you " all thaat time without fail. she rarely calls me except to get something or ask for something. I've become used to it already and don't expect more. The children have busy lives and have little time to call their mom. It is what it is.

Michael, June 25, 2013 7:46 AM

So True.

Mrs. S, I think we are from the same generation. Our childrens generation is all about them. My parents, born before the great depression are both gone, their beloved memory remains. Our children are of the 'Me" generation. Your story is typical as my sons and their spouse are like you girls. Sad. When we are gone..... They will get older and feel that they should of called their mothers. All mother', Jewish or not are all the same. My G-d bless our generation and May G-d comfort you Mre.S. For all mother' need to hear the voices of their children.

(62) marci rapp, March 7, 2013 8:55 AM


I can identify....
the mom looks like Michelle Pfiefer????

(61) Gary Levine, March 3, 2013 8:52 PM


Nichola and May were American treasures. The one disadvantage of this routine is that its been edited down. During the few years they performed together, they were wonderful.. They have both gone on to brilliant careers, director, writer, performer. gary

Norm Williams, March 6, 2013 3:36 PM

rt on

Leonard Paul, March 14, 2013 6:12 PM

For the unedited version, go to youtube.com

You will find the full version under Elaine May and Mike Nichols

(60) Jo-Ann Silverstein, February 26, 2013 3:08 PM


Aw Boloney ! There is no such thing as a Modern Jewish Mother or for that matter, the sons are all the same ! Life goes on and as time goes on, even those moments on the phone become precious ones in our heart..

(59) Miriam, February 26, 2013 6:26 AM

One Solution

I told my son that if he wishes his child to call him to wish him a good Shabbos when she grows up, he would be wise to call his parents each Friday afternoon and to make sure she is aware of his calling. Being the wonderful son he is, he listened to my advice.

(58) greg, February 25, 2013 4:31 PM

It is so true

It is so true!!!!

(57) Anonymous, February 23, 2013 8:28 PM

Saw them do this on Broadway long ago; what a team!

I saw them do these skits and others just as wonderful on Broadway in the 19humhums. Thanks for the memories.

(56) Arlene Santonastasi, February 23, 2013 4:58 AM

I to am a Jewish mother - my son is 32, married, one child and I also comment on the lack of phone calls I receive. I read him the riot act and guess what, he calls a lot more often - but, I know when to push and I know when to pull back. That, is the modern Jewish mother!

(55) Anonymous, February 20, 2013 3:45 PM

oh how I miss my mother

If not were for my jewish mother I would not be in the position I have. She push me to the limit knowing in my youth how lazy I was, she knew from the go how important education was, herself college educated and spoke several languages. So jewish mothers keep pushing some good will come out of all this

(54) Sylvia, February 19, 2013 5:20 AM

Mine too

Ah yes, the Jewish Mother's curse "Your children should only be to you like you are to me, should worry you like you worry me! Oye!

(53) Ima Shoulson, February 19, 2013 1:32 AM

Jewish mothers love to suffer - that's what it means

I have one & only son - Oh how I miss not hearing from him... I literally long to hear his voice - telling me how to fix my computer or the toaster or whatever. My son is outstanding in every thing . Please call me & let me hear your voice.

(52) Rochelle, February 17, 2013 6:20 PM

I AM a Jewish Mother.....and like it or not, we're all the same in one way or another and our kids love us!!!!!

There's nothing like a Jewish Mother.......!!!!

(51) Barbarta Stebbins, February 12, 2013 3:52 PM

this is a riot.. I'm crying hereh

Loved it!! thank you.. crying with tears fromlaughing so hard..

(50) Allen, February 12, 2013 1:28 AM

Brilliant, still timely

It was ahead of its time, and like it or not its very accurate. And although done in Jewish style, this guilt play is certainly not limited to Jews.

(49) Robert Lavey MD, February 11, 2013 4:39 PM

You have no sense of humor.

(48) Anonymous, February 11, 2013 1:17 AM


(47) Anonymous, February 10, 2013 7:01 PM

Very funny

Pretty sad that folks can't seem to see the humor in this. Lighten up! This is hilarious, and yes I have a Jewish mother and father and love them very much!

Sherry Oakes, February 11, 2013 4:27 PM

I totally agree. We've come to a pretty sad place when people can't laugh at this. It's mother's milk to me.

(46) David Tachauer, February 10, 2013 5:49 PM


An offensive stereotypical portrayal of Jewish motherhood. Barely humorous cliché.

(45) Anonymous, February 10, 2013 2:07 PM

old but true

Sure it's offensive but it's absolutely true. And it's funny all the same. Human relationships are funny, offensive and true. I guess that's what makes us human. From my perspective; it was my father who was more like these two; my mother was an absent mom which probably was a life saver because getting it from both sides would be very tough indeed. But everyone around me had folks like these. Nevertheless; these two brilliant comics make it funnier than it actually was in real life. That's show biz.

(44) Vonerica, February 9, 2013 7:09 PM


We teach our children to be independent and how to acquire things. But, we do not teach them how to share themselves with us or others.

(43) A Daughter, February 9, 2013 4:07 PM

As a daughter of a Jewish mother, watching this video put knots in my stomach. The aggravation and surrender that the son displayed when the mother started talking about her doctors appointment is very legitimate. Why should the mother feel that her self imposed worrying be the responsibility of her son, she did not even engage him about his life?! Rockets? that sounds important, and she does not ask one question about it. Jewish mothers: please create and or enjoy your own lives, we children of Jewish mothers really want you to be happy without being responsible and heavily tied into your happiness. A Jewish Daughter

Jewish mother22, March 6, 2013 1:30 PM

So sad

You don't want to be responsible and heavily tied to your mother? That is so sad. You must be self absorbed, that you care that little about your mother. I hope G-D changes your heart.

(42) Anonymous, February 8, 2013 4:52 PM


Casting Jewish mothers in a very bad light. Very offensive.

(41) Anonymous, February 8, 2013 12:10 AM

Funny and True!

The hilarious and ironic thing about this video is that it is absolutely true from both perspectives.. the son's and the mother's. I have 3 sons and they will all see me in this. Yet I also see myself in it and in every other mother I know, Jewish or not. I could say it is just a fact of life but on a more serious note, I do see that families are growing apart much more these days both physically,in location and socially where it is encouraged to be independent of your parents. Also, there is a disconnect in that seniors( usually understood as people who's kids have left home) have HAD their lives and are not "with it " in this new "highly advanced" technological age.. (tongue in cheek)

(40) babs mohel, February 6, 2013 11:44 PM


I work at an assisted lving community that is primarily Jewish .I would love to be able to share this with the residents here - is there anyway this could be shown on the television through a DVD

(39) Anonymous, February 6, 2013 2:13 AM

Very Funny

Sounds just like me. I should send it to my son. He will enjoy this for sure.

(38) A Mother, February 5, 2013 5:33 PM

It's not only about a mother worrying. It's about being thought of. Even though this was a comedy routine one can still feel the hurt a mother feels when she has given her heart and soul to her child and only wants a call on a regular basis to see how she is feeling or to be updated on her child's activities. It can be a one minute call to say "I love you, I'll get back to you later when I have more time". That call is the fuel we parents need to feel that we are included in our children's lives.

(37) Suza'le, February 5, 2013 2:35 AM


Nothing like the JEWiSH Guilt ..... Loved it.

(36) Brenda Brachfeld, February 4, 2013 7:05 PM

My Mother was my best Friend

My Mother was a loving Mother, her saying was, I may not always be right but I'm never wrong. I called my Mother, when I go up, before I went out for the day, and in the evening. My Husband picked here up every weekend so she would not be alone. She lived only a half hour from me. I miss her very much. I also miss my Husband who also passed. My Son is out of the country, but My Daughter lives only 10 min. Away. I do not make any demands on my Son. It is what it is.Brenda B.

Barbara E., May 30, 2013 9:24 PM

I may not always be right but I'm never wrong.

I thought my mother made that one up. They (your mother and mine) must have heard this saying together. I to, miss my mother all the time and I was an only child. have 2 two grown children and I'm becoming my mother every day. My son calls, my daughter, not so much.

(35) Ena Wason, February 2, 2013 12:08 AM

Jewish mothers are not exactly like all mothers, just funnier.

My mother was a Quaker; when I grew up, left home and was married, I was wearing a leaden coat of guilt for "deserting her". Yet, if I called her during the TV show General Hospital she did not wait for me to greet her because the message to anyone who rang her was the same: "I can't talk right now. My show is on!" In my mind's ear, I can still hear the receiver being slammed down. Mom was every bit as funny as Ms. May (Mom's name was Mae). She has been gone now for 30 years and not a day goes by that I do not think of her, not a day goes by that the thought of her does not bring a smile to my lips.. Thank you, Mom, I still love you and hope you will allow this message to get through to you.

(34) Natasha Josefowitz, February 1, 2013 6:30 AM


also Italian, Russian, Greek, Spanish, Mothers who will give their lives for their children whom they adore. A little guilt may be useful,t, so go ahead call your Mother. I wish I had mine to still call ..

DENISE, February 2, 2013 4:42 PM

Miss my mom

Call your mom! She gave you life. I wish I had my mom to call her and her to call me. It was 23 years yesterday she crossed over. There is not one day that I do not think of her. She is my mom no matter what! I miss and love her.

(33) Anonymous, February 1, 2013 4:59 AM

this I grew up with and appreciate it.

this is so much fun

(32) A.M. Klement, January 31, 2013 7:26 PM

Oh! how mothers can frustrate us.

Although this is toted as a Jewish mother, I feel that all mothers can be concerned about their children regardless of that grown "child's" age.

(31) Andy Schwartz, January 31, 2013 5:13 PM

Mein Yiddishe Mama......

I used to call my mother, may she rest in peace every week just before shabbott. It took awhile for me to realize that she was no longer with us. Unfortunately we realize it to late that she is the best friend you have in this world.

(30) Anonymous, January 31, 2013 4:18 PM


Omg! Word for word from Jewish Russian mother! And how! Good to know I am not the only one suffering ! "oh I haven't slept in days waiting for your call!". And when I ask her why she did not pick up the phone and call me she says, "what? I have to call you? You are busy! I don't want to disturb you. And you can't pick up the phone for a second and call me?" Yep! This is how it goes! I am 46 years old!!!!!

Tatyana, March 17, 2013 3:45 PM

Me too!

I am a child of Jewish Russian mother and I am the one also. I am 55. My daughter calls me every day. My son does it every other day. But at least twice a week they call Grandma to check if she needs anything. I call my 80-years old parents a few times a day because their English is limited and they need help. I think I am blessed!

Anonymous, June 25, 2013 7:59 AM

Yes you are....

Mazel Tov. Yes Tatyana the A-Mighty has blessed you, your children and your beloved parents. it is so wonderful how everyone in your beloved family call each other like a fine swiss cloock. G-d bless all of you.

(29) Anonymous, January 31, 2013 4:13 PM

Great to see N. & M. again . Thanks.

Funny,funny video but some of the comments are even funnier .

(28) Bobbie S, January 31, 2013 3:19 PM


I am so happy that I have wonderful boys. I am so happy that I am not like the mother depicted.

(27) Anonymous, January 30, 2013 10:08 PM

Oy gevalt

Oy gevalt, that sounds like my mother, I live 12,000 miles away and I have had to live with the guilt of leaving my home for the past 25 years. With every phone call you hang up with heavy heart, yet you always keep calling!!!!!

(26) Karen B, January 30, 2013 6:22 AM

Hilarious!!!! Can't get any better.

They did a great job. And by the way, you don't have to be a Jew, to be like that. Any mother can be a nagging mother. Oh!! So funny. Loved it.

(25) Judy Davidson, January 30, 2013 4:43 AM

thanks I needed that

it has been a week since I heard from one of my sons

Yaely, January 31, 2013 1:04 PM

U are NOT alone

What about months at a time. Time for everything else. Still cant get use to it nor accepted

(24) Anonymous, January 30, 2013 4:38 AM

My parents took my brother and me to New York many years ago to see these two doing a "2-man show". They were a great comedy team. Seeing this brought back a lot of memories.

(23) Anonymous, January 29, 2013 9:51 PM

My mother constantly let me know I did nothing right.

I did not follow the same religious ideas and would go to hell, I dared to get married after college and not come back home to find a job and live with her, I had the wrong political viewpoints, I did not dress properly, I used nasty words in my conversation ( someone tells a lie, when a lady would say they tell a story, darn! as I am thinking a much worse word, mention parts of the body that denote male or female, etc.,). And, she kept saying she would go to hell if she did not cahnge my ways-so she kept trying.

(22) Philip weberman, January 28, 2013 10:26 PM

Yes but mine is Hungarian.

I am the baby in the family born in '55 to survivors. I speak with my mom on average 10 times a week. Sometimes the 10-20 calls will happen in two days. Sometimes it takes me a couple of days to recover from these calls. While the video had me laughing no true Hungarian holocaust survivor mother would give such a light dose of guilt. I got off easy. I live 1400 miles away. This is not by accident. I can't go any farther south than this and still be in the USA. I love my mom. But it is my brother who lives a block away who will go to heaven. Me? I'm the good son. My brother Mr. Block away is the one she dumps on. Go figure. Unless you have a Hunky holocaust survivor mother with one oar in the water you will never understand. God bless my mother and god have mercy on my brother.

malvina, January 29, 2013 4:08 PM

my mother was not a survivor

My mother with her mother came to Mexico in 1936 from Poland and she and her mother were the replica of this video she make my life a living hell,being a survivor is not excuse to be like this,is a stereotipe of the european mother of those days,thankx god im not like this with my children

natania etienne, January 31, 2013 1:33 AM

am i so bad?

now i worry am i so bad ? or even worse ? who do i make suffer the most ? my son or daughter i should keep heary this 10 time a day ....hungarian polish jewish mama....

(21) Marlene Klotz, January 28, 2013 6:36 PM

Pure fun from two absolute comedy talents. Meant to enjoy and laugh at and not to be taken seriously. There is nothing wrong with this send-up of the overly protected mother - sometimes we can see our own weak points, recognize them, and then laugh about them. He who laughs lasts!

(20) Renate Baramy, January 28, 2013 8:10 AM

Very nice it made me laugh

(19) Hannah, January 28, 2013 6:25 AM

As I watch the " daily calling adult children" I conclude the following: True adult children always find THE time, THE mature adult children. The one who do not "have time" so to speak are the immature and ignorant one at any age. It doesn't take a lot of time, it takes a lot of maturity to call a mother who would understand how busy and HOW loving you are. Make a short and frequent call to your mom! What mothers do not understand is how foolish it is to blame THE time.. Hello, dial the CELL phone.... we called our mothers from the booth phones...

(18) David, January 27, 2013 5:26 AM

I was born in 1956. My mom and grandma were not like this so much. But I do know the stereotype

(17) Anonymous, January 24, 2013 4:27 PM

I laughed at this when it first came out on a 78 record around 40 or 50 or 60 years ago. They were terrific.

Anonymous, December 29, 2013 5:26 PM

Wrong Speed

The album was 33 1/3 rpms. The 78 rpm records went out in the late, late 40s - and "An Evening with Elaine May and Mike Nichols" on which "Mother and Son" was included was released in 1960.

(16) Elisa, January 24, 2013 12:57 AM

If your truly a mom, you will feel like May

I'm Italian and I sounded somewhat like her about putting the guilty feeling on them when they become parents themselves. I say it now and my grandkids are small yet. When my son complains I say, you were the same way. You needed to be watched every minute even when you slept, you moved around so much. So this is true of most mothers. WE WANT TO HEAR FROM OUR CHILDEN. It makes us happy. SO DO IT.

(15) Anonymous, January 23, 2013 10:27 PM

As a Jewish Daughter and Mother

I had a good laugh. But I'm wondering, what's so difficult about showing parental respect and picking up the phone? I call my mom every day. We speak for 2 minutes and she feels great that I keep in touch. It's no big deal for me and it makes her feel good. What's the big deal? ('Course my son rarely calls me LOL).

(14) Itzik Stahl, January 23, 2013 9:13 PM


Jewish mother...

(13) Mel Berger, January 22, 2013 3:01 AM


This was my Mother-In-Law perfectly. If you didn't call her every day she would drive you nuts. She expected a call for every card she sent and evry gift, even if it cost a quarter at a yard sale and was someone's used dirty clothing.

(12) RICHARD, January 18, 2013 11:59 PM



(11) Muriel Hyman, January 18, 2013 1:34 PM

Thebest clip ive seen in a long time, Im still laughing.

(10) Anonymous, January 18, 2013 4:43 AM

Not just Jewish mothers

I'm a Scottish mother and although I don't sound that whiny (I hope) I think many mothers fall into this category. Why shouldn't we! Look what our bodies had to put up with for nine months!

(9) Feigele, January 17, 2013 11:45 PM

As a Jewish Mother,

I am happy when my children call me or talk online every week. After all they spend a fortune on cell phone, IPod, IPad, etc. they might as well use it to talk to their parents. If I don’t hear from them for more than a week (which is very rare) then my mind start buzzing and searching for answers. I have a son who lives in Australia, we talk almost every day on Messenger now Skype, My daughter lives close by so every day and my oldest son lives in Manhattan we speak few times a week or not depending… We love and care deeply about our children no matter how old they are but we have to give them space. Lots of people complain of neglect and abuse from their parents, then, others complain of too much attention and huggings. Such is human nature. I believe that today the stereotype of a Jewish mother described in this story is irrelevant thanks to the new technology.

(8) Omri, January 17, 2013 9:18 PM

SOOO accurate!

OMG!!! THIS IS SOOOOOOOO accurate. When I lived in Los Angeles, I forgot to call my mother and this is the truth....I worked for a company that gave me an old pager and they would page codes to it. No problem. They paged these codes and I knew what to do. I gave her the number to the pager (big mistake) I am in the mountains in snow (more sleety I guess) and she pages me her own telephone number. I was in the mountains. I could not call back. Within a coupe of hours the texts got more urgent and finally I got her number followed by 911 911 911. No one had a cell phone (don't ask me why) and so we had find a little spot heading down the mountain (on slick roads nonetheless) that had a pay phone. I kid you not, I called and said "WHAT?!" and she said "I paged you and you didn't answer" "I said I am really busy right now and I am in the mountains and the weather is bad. WHAT DO YOU WANT?!" and she said, "It has been a while since you called your mother". THEN when I lived in Tucson I worked nights so I turned off my phone. My mother tried to call and could not get me all night. She called the police who came to my door to do a welfare check. They woke me up and basically said "Call your mother" So I did and she said...."You moved out there a few days ago I was worried. You didn't call your mother" I said I was busy getting a job and I worked nights and now I was awake, she needed to stop. She said "I will stop when you remember to call your mother". II have more stories but seriously....this was SOOOO typical of those conversations (except the baby talk at the end) ROFL ROFL

(7) Roderick Stone, January 17, 2013 5:02 PM

My Long Lost Mother is on the Phone Dear, I could be a week ! !

I think the mother is like the Lord God of Israel looking in on our lives, he wants almost the same relationship with his family of humans and sometimes is misunderstood too. How odd the Jewish mothers approach is, but also it's a reach out in a caringly obligatory way. It is oddly and peculairly unique. No other mothers in this world can be defined in this way or it's not Jewish ! ! Perhaps it is a fault of the son ! ! ?? He could assuage his Mother too, by leading a conversation in a differing thought pattern or concept. But the humor here is inescapable in this case, because we are not family ! ! And a good Jewish family in God is unbeatable ! ! Ahh a moment extra, with sincere kindness will span the Heartache River of a oddly caring mother who loves to labour the obligations..God cares for Israel in a motherly way at times ! !

(6) Anonymous, January 16, 2013 8:15 PM

satire helps uncover the 'bones' behind destructive relationship

I think, contrary to what the previous comment maintains, this video attempts to highlight the fact that there are some people who control others through manipulation,passive aggressive, abusive tactics - when one sees it depicted here, it uncovers the motivations behind such manipulation, since when one is inside a power struggle it isn't as easy to spot the manoeuvres. It helps one ot see the destrcutive nature of such relationships. The video employs sardonic humour and satire to show this; sometimes satire can simply look cruel rather than being understood as the tool it is meant to be.Unfortunately, i've met some people like this - it helps to see the mechanism of abuse clearly, helps one to find a more objective view (when one has abuse thrown at one, it can be overhwelming) and perhaps one is motivated to seek out some form of advice or counselling in order to help oneself, which may in turn assist in changing the balance in a poisonous relationship such as this. I too could not laugh simply because I've had this sort of manipulation put onto me - it's too close to the bone. By the way, I don't think the video says that all Jewish women are like this - it's not making a sweeping statement. I think it highlights the fact that there are women (and men) who enjoy controlling others.

A Jewish Daughter, February 9, 2013 4:10 PM

Amen! I could not really laugh, and this video made me feel anxious and tense.

(5) Anonymous, January 15, 2013 9:45 PM


This is 100% MY MOTHER! SPOT ON!

(4) Richard Marcus, January 14, 2013 11:05 PM

My mother...

Her motto was "No angst, no thanks."

(3) Lisa, January 13, 2013 12:59 PM

Bottom line we love our kids... We just a hello now & then!!

Too funny !! Sometimes I wonder if this is how I sound ....

(2) Alan S., January 13, 2013 11:31 AM

Funny and true! But to me, the nagging Jewish mother doesn't make Jewish moms "special" in a good way.

Anonymous, February 5, 2013 2:31 AM

Jewish mothers are special because they not just nagging they are carrying and loving and would give their lives for their children . That is why they are SPECIAL.

(1) Anonymous, January 13, 2013 11:30 AM

NOT funny

I consider myself a person with a great sense of humor but not only did I find this skit not funny, I was surprised that this offensive piece found its way to aish.com. Neither my Jewish mother, mother-in-law, nor grandmothers were like this; nor am I like this with my own children (really1). Jewish women may be strong but that does not mean they are manipulative, controlling, passive-aggressive, abusive or mentally ill! This video attempts to present a very sick and false image that does a disservice to Jewish women everywhere.

Anonymous, January 14, 2013 1:20 AM

you obviously dont have such a Jewish Mother in your family, because if you would you find this hilarious and nowhere near offensive. For those of us who have been blessed with the old world, Jewish stereotype mother (grandmother etc), we know that it only comes from the deepest love for us and as we make fun of the nagging, we secretly relish special connection it is indicative of.

Jan, January 14, 2013 6:48 PM

thisa is my bubbah!

when i would call her, the first thing, the FIRST THING, she would say is: "Nu? So how come you don't call?" and then of course she would go on to say things like: "So your old Bubbah isn't so important anymore? Didn't matter if I had called her the day before; that was the response. I loved her to bits! And I miss her to this day!

Richard, January 17, 2013 2:39 AM

Feel sorry

I feel sorry for your children, lady. The worst part is that they are learning or have already learned now NOT to have a sense of humor.

Omri, January 17, 2013 9:28 PM

Get a sense of humor please

My grandmother and mother are just like this. I love them both and I would not trade them. This is not offensive. This is the ability to laugh at ourselves. Do you really take yourself so seriously you cannot laugh at things in our own culture? I found this the opposite of offensive. I have watched it several times and its great. Does it help to know that both Elaine May and Mike Nichols are Jewish? They are not poking fun at US but at themselves as well.


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