I have had a deep connection to Parsha Yitro for the past 14 years because it’s my older son’s bar mitzvah portion. Well, it is the Ten Commandments so that connection truly began a lot longer ago.
But one night, the year before his Day, we started to really delve into what these Big Ten were — and couldn’t. We were out to dinner and could rattle off five, maybe six, off the tops of our heads. That’s all.
Since we couldn’t resort to the internet to fill in the gaps, our attention turned to other realms appealing to three guys — two of whom were preteen — that might have a set of rules, like… the Planet of the Apes. And so, the Monkey Commandments were born.
And, no, I don’t remember Any of them…just that, for a time, they were a symbolic stand-in suited to a particular group. So I thought that tonight, I would do the same for Women.
Here are my Women’s Ten Commandments:
You shall love your body-
Whether it’s thicker here than you’d want or a little lacking there, it’s yours and it’s your temple. It makes you, You. And You are beautiful.
Honor the good in your Mother and Father - and try not to repeat the “Ugh, I sound just like my mother” moments.
Speak up and Speak out. And it’s OK if sometimes you do it softly.
Say YES only when you mean it, and not just because it’s easy.
Say NO when you want to…because it’s really what you mean.
You shall say, “I’m sorry” ONLY when you have done something wrong. Seriously, only when you are expressing Extreme regret - I stepped on your cat or I shrunk your sweater - not for little things that are out of your control like, I’m sorry but you’re out of bourbon. Just have gin instead.
Keep Shabbat and let it guide your spirit throughout the week.
You will describe little girls by their character, not their looks. And remember: She is not a Doll. Or an Angel. Or, well … you get the picture.
You will Not leave your seat when your partner or child yells to you from another room: Do we have staples? Or, Where are my keys? Or, Is there toothpaste in the house? If they can pronounce toothpaste, they can look under the vanity!
10 (And finally…)
Respect yourself and believe in yourself. I do!
And, speaking of gin, martinis go well with this or any other d'var torah.
-Fill your cocktail shaker with ice.
-Pour in a nice splash of dry vermouth...I like Dolin when I want to feel special.
-If your shaker is truly full of ice, pour in your gin -- Gordon's for everyday special, Plymouth or Hendricks for particularly special -- to the top.
-Cap it up and leave it be while you pop your veg (that's what we call the garnish) into your coupes or other martini glasses.
Yes, that dilutes it a bit...that's OK! You're making two: One for you and the other for yours. If that's the same being, it's a good thing you diluted it. Juss sayin...
-Now you shake. And shake until your hands are reeeaaaallllyy cold.
-Strain into your glasses, sip, savor and