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    Dear Vues Master:
    FULL DISCLOSURE: The following story is 100%

    true (except for some minor exaggerations, literary em-
    bellishments, and factual amplifications!)

    The P’sicha Fiasco
    Last week I was approached by a Gabbai before the
    Torah reading, and was kindly offered to do P’sicha.

    I didn’t have to think for even a moment before po-
    litely declining the honor. He looked at me strangely,

    like, what chutzpah, but then shrugged and turned and
    offered it to somebody else. It might have been the
    first time in his 30 year “Gabbaihood” that somebody
    turned him down! I saw him whisper something to the

    Rabbi, who gave me a dirty look, but I didn’t care. Lit-
    tle did he know there was a good reason for my seem-
    ing disrespect! You see, last year I was davening in a

    crowded Young Israel minyan with over 800 mispall-
    elim in Florida one Shabbos when I was approached by

    a well-meaning Gabbai asking me to do P’sicha. Natu-
    rally, I was honored and quickly agreed. Then, at the

    proper time, I strode up to the Aron Kodesh, stood on
    the right side of the huge, embroidered, velvet curtain,
    and looked for the cord to pull on, and thereby slide
    the “Paroches” to the side. But to my chagrin there was
    no cord to pull! I quickly looked behind the curtain,
    but no luck. I thought, perhaps it was on the other side
    for some reason, so I walked quickly to the left side
    of the curtain and searched – to no avail! NO CORD!
    A murmur went up from the crowd. I was holding up
    the Davening! The Chazzan was already standing there
    nervously tapping his foot, waiting for me to give him
    the Sefer Torah. He was staring daggers at me! My

    face started to turn a bright crimson just like the vel-
    vet curtain that was giving me such problems. I turned

    around, looking for help, but no one was coming to my
    aid. Then I had a brilliant idea! I recalled that in some
    shuls the Aron didn’t have any cords to pull. You had

    to slide the curtain to the side with your hand. Sheep-
    ishly smiling, but now, with a growing confidence that

    I had solved the problem, I tried pushing the curtain to
    the side. But it wouldn’t budge! It was big and heavy,
    and hardly moved. Aha, I thought to myself, I probably

    have to push it not from left to right but from right to
    left. Beaming at my brilliance, I quickly jumped to the
    other side and tried pushing it that way. But again it
    wouldn’t budge an inch! By now the murmuring had
    turned into angry shouts, hooting and laughter! “NEEE,
    NUUU, SHOITEH EFFIN SHOIN!” I started to panic!
    The blood drained from my face! For a brief second,
    I thought of bolting off the stage, out of the Shul and
    running home. But then I had a brilliant idea. I turned
    and picked up the curtain from the bottom and raised
    it over my head and dropped it behind me. So now I
    was invisible to the deafening crowd and had access

    to the Aron. I thought, perhaps, this was a new secu-
    rity feature to protect against anyone seeing the com-
    bination used to open the Aron. At this point, the agi-
    tated shouting and insults ( Meshugeneh, Shlimazel”)

    were mostly muffled, but now I could hear footsteps
    approaching me. The Gabbai had finally come to my
    rescue. He lifted the curtain and guided me back to the
    proper position on the right side of the curtain. Now,
    utterly mortified, I half turned to see the devastation I
    had unleashed.To my horror there was utter chaos in
    the shul. 800 exceedingly agitated, starving men were
    calling for my head. I thought at any moment I would

    be rushed, bound and quartered by the crazed crowd al-
    ready salivating from the scent of pickled herring, Cho-
    lent and Kishkeh wafting in from the lobby. The rabbi’s

    face had turned a deep, royal purple with embarrass-
    ment! The aging president was apoplectic, his whole

    body was twitching uncontrollably and his mouth was
    convoluted and twisted with an expression I’d never
    seen on a living person before. The Gabbai looked up
    and gently lifted my hand above my head. Perplexed I
    too looked way up and lo and behold I couldn’t believe
    my eyes! There, hanging about three feet above my
    head was the beautiful, blessed, triple braided, tasseled

    cord! I’d have to have been 8 feet tall to have seen it-
    but there it was. I quickly pulled it down and the cur-
    tain smoothly slid to the side. The cacophony quickly

    subsided and I handed the Torah to the Chazzan. I then

    followed closely behind him for protection as he car-
    ried it to the Bimah and to the audible sound of snick-
    ering laughter I quickly left the Shul. I haven’t gon

    back there since! End of story? Hardly! A
    year later I was davening in a Shteeble this
    time when once again I was approached
    by a well meaning Gabbai offering me…
    P’sicha. What it is about my face that
    makes me the perfect candidate for P’sicha
    I’ll never know. By this time the pain and

    anguish of the first sordid affair had some-
    what dissipated and I figured what can

    possibly go wrong? I reluctantly accepted!
    As I approached the curtain I was horrified
    once again to see there was no cord! I don’t
    know who designs these things, but they
    should be shot! Horrible memories flooded
    my mind nearly paralyzing my muscles! I

    ran to the other side- still no cord! Remem-
    bering the last time, I looked up to the ceil-
    ing-but this time still no blessed cord! Ner-
    vous murmurs and giggles rose from the

    congregation. I began to sweat profusely!
    Thankfully the rabbi saw my predicament
    and made a swiping motion with his hand.
    I quickly got the message and swiped the
    curtain. It slid easily to the side. Whew!
    Now I only had to open the two heavy,
    gray metal doors. Should be easy shmeazy,
    right? But as hard as I tried I couldn’t get
    them to swing open! Each door must’ve
    weighed 100 pounds! I couldn’t even turn
    the handles! Some men started yelling out
    instructions from the back of the shul. Turn
    them to the left, turn them to the right, pull,
    push – nothing worked! The room began
    spinning! Pandemonium broke out as my

    heart started palpitating and I felt a diz-
    zying nausea rise from my bowels! My

    nightmare scenario was coming true…
    once again! I swooned and collapsed to the
    floor! A Hatzolah member jumped out of
    his seat, pulled out his walkie-talkie and
    proceeded to rip open my shirt! But before

    he could reach for the defibrillator, some-
    one shouted, “it’s open!” I looked up from

    the floor and the two iron doors were wide

    open, and the beautiful Torahs stood ma-
    jestically within, waiting to be taken out.

    I immediately felt better, got up and hand-
    ed the Torah to the Chazzan. As I slowly

    made my way back to my seat people were
    patting my back and wishing me well but
    right then and there I made a solemn vow
    – never to accept P’sicha again! So all you
    Gabbies reading this out there. If you see
    me in shul be forewarned: I’ll accept any
    Aliyah, Hagbah, Glilah or even Maftir but
    please, please no P’sicha!!!
    Country Yossi Toiv
    Vues Master’s Note: I hope you open up!
    Don’t pull the curtain on your act? It seems
    like the Gabai is pulling some strings!

    Dear Vues Master:
    I find it hard to believe how we sacrifice
    for our children, send them to the very

    best Yeshivas, and pay the highest tu-
    ition to get a meaningful education. An

    education filled with examples from our
    avos and emahos. We send them to learn
    chesed, middos, and most of all derech
    eretz. Yet, when our children go out into
    the streets with their electric scooters that’s
    when derech erets really counts. Sadly, to

    say all those examples are not being prac-
    ticed. Unfortunately, it seems as though

    non-Jews have more middos and respect
    when it comes to slowing down. Why, just
    this week alone two African Americans
    and a Mexican yielded and smiled while

    bringing his scooter to a complete stop al-
    lowing me to pass, instead of zooming by

    having me move out of their way. So, how
    is it dear parents that we are not teaching
    our teenagers the basics in Derech Eretz?
    while they are on their way to yeshiva to
    learn said derech eretz? PLEASE move out

    of the pedestrian’s way do not force the pe-
    destrian to move out of your way. Whenev-
    er a rider does behave respectfully, I make

    sure to point it out to them verbally. So,
    parents please teach your children to have
    common decency in other words derech
    eretz on the streets
    Thank You
    Devorah Leitner
    Vues Master’s Note: Derech Eretz is not
    taught but rather followed by example!
    Dear Vues Master:
    When Rabbi Eizel Charif was asked why
    it is that people prefer to give charity to a
    disabled pauper than to a pauper who is a
    Talmid Chacham, he responded: “Every
    person is concerned that he could also lose
    his wealth and lose his health and become
    a pauper. But people are not concerned
    that they might become a Talmid Chacham
    and poor.”
    Vues Master’s Note: You mean you can’t
    become a Talmid Chacham automatically!
    Dear Vues Master:
    Berashis (48:8,9) – Yisra’el saw Yosef’s
    sons. (When he tried to bless them, the
    Divine Presence departed, so) he said,
    “(From) where were these (boys born,
    who are not worthy of being blessed)?”

    (Producing his betrothal and marriage con-
    tract,) Yosef said to his father, “They are

    my sons, whom Hashem gave through (a

    marriage certificate by) this (documenta-
    tion).” – Gutnick Edition How did Yosef

    know to bring the documents and why did
    Yisra’el inquire now? Yisra’el did not have
    any reason to see the documents until there
    was a transaction. Similarly, Yoseph wrote
    those documents with the understanding
    that one day he would have to show his
    father. This means Yosef understood the

    rules of the home and Yisra’el was satis-
    fied. This addresses an important matter

    that many fathers must contend with. A
    father must make sure the children know
    the rules of the home, when they are still

    young. For instance, Rabbi Aisenstark re-
    lated the following: The father of Rabbis

    Shimon Mordechai and Moshe Schwab
    would bang his hand down at the Seder
    table at the mention of the Evil Son and
    proclaimed “I love all my children very
    much. You must all know however that I
    love Hashem much more.” He made clear
    that any son who became a rasha would
    no longer be welcome in the family home.
    The father must set the foundation by not
    being a hypocrite; you cannot expect your
    son to listen to you if you do not listen to
    your father. Once a son can take care of
    himself the father is more obligated to his
    father than his son; however, in practice
    the grandfather wants his grandchild taken
    care of first.
    Vues Master’s Note: Remember a father
    who is divorced is in a different matzav
    than a regular father!
    Dear Vues Master:
    Nedarim 81a. And for what reason is it
    not common for Torah scholars to give
    rise to Torah scholars from among their
    sons? Rav Yosef said: [1] This is so that

    they should not say the Torah is their in-
    heritance. Therefore, it is unusual to find

    that all the sons of a Torah scholar are also
    Torah scholars. Rav Sheshet, son of Rav
    Idi, said: [2] This is so that they should not
    be presumptuous toward the community,
    with the knowledge that they will be Torah
    scholars like their fathers. Mar Zutra said:
    [3] Because they take advantage of their

    fathers’ standing to lord over the commu-
    nity and are punished for their conduct.

    [According to the Maharsha it is the To-
    rah scholars’ punishment because they act

    domineeringly towards the public.] Rav
    Ashi said: [4] Because they call ordinary
    people donkeys. [Mararsha explains that
    by calling people donkeys they imply that

    the unlearned are naturally not inclined to-
    wards wisdom. That belief is disproven by

    their own children not becoming scholars.

    For if success is dictated by one’s natural

    capacity, their sons should become schol-
    ars as well, since natural traits are usually

    passed from father to son.] Ravina says:
    [5] They are punished because they do not
    first recite a blessing over the Torah before

    commencing their studies. – by R. Stein-
    saltz The last four reasons have in common

    that there is a lack of humility. The litmus
    test of a Talmud Chacham is if he is humble
    before his parents. Here is an example of
    someone who revered his parents, and his
    children and his Childrens’ children were
    Torah scholars, and that was the Chassam
    Sofer’s father. He was a talmud Chacham
    and showed unusual piety to his father.
    Rav Brevda said that the Chasam Sofer’s
    father asked his 12 year old son to give the
    yahrzeit shir for him as he had to go away
    for business. When he came back he heard
    that his son gave a wonderful shiur but he
    wasn’t happy that he asked questions on
    his grandfather’s Torah and gave his own
    answer. He slapped his son and he went to
    bed crying. The son told his teacher, Rav

    Nasson Adler, the next morning what hap-
    pened. Rav Nasson told the father that he

    can keep his son or give him over to him
    completely. The father accepted the rebuke
    and gave his son to him; even though, it
    meant not talking to him again. He didn’t
    have to do this but he understood this was
    the best thing for his son otherwise his son

    would always feel afraid of saying some-
    thing that might contradict his grandfather.

    Even though the father was strict with his
    son, the end showed that it was 100 percent
    for the son. The father’s actions caused his

    descendants to remain Torah scholars. Hu-
    mility starts with Bain Adam L’chaveiro

    before Bain Adam L’makom and it starts
    with your parents.
    Vues Master’s Note: Extremism never
    works! Including bashing Roshei Yeshiva
    because you disagree!
    Dear Vues Master:
    אחות נחשון – הנושא אשה צריך לבדוק באחיה
    Before ספר חסידים שע“ו, the to According
    marrying a woman, one should check out
    not only her brother but also her mother.
    (Future Shvigger)

    Vues Master’s Note: It is a good thing peo-
    ple don’t know this because the Shidduch

    crisis would be that much greater. Who
    would approve a mother-in-law!
    Dear Vues Master:
    I enjoy reading the Vues Master section

    very much because of the many interest-
    ing chazals and other vertlach submitted

    by readers. Who ever thought a Letters to
    the Editor section would be divrei Torah.
    Fantastic publication.
    Vues Master’s Note: Why? Thank you, it
    is good that our readership is sending us
    these letters!
    Dear Vues Master:
    A Jewish visitor to Paris was on his way
    to the Louvre when he saw a vicious dog
    attack a boy. Without hesitation, the Jew
    pounced on the dog, choked it to death,
    and saved the little boy. Police quickly

    appeared on the scene, followed by jour-
    nalists eager to interview the hero. One

    of them said: “Tomorrow’s headline will
    be ‘A Parisian hero saves a child from
    the teeth of a vicious dog.’” “That sounds
    nice,” said the hero, “but I’m not Parisian.”

    The journalist replied: “OK, so the head-
    line will read “French hero saves a child

    from the teeth of a vicious dog.’” The Jew-
    ish visitor corrected him again. “I’m not

    French.” Undeterred, the reporter said:
    “So the headline will read “European hero
    saves a child from the teeth of a vicious
    dog.’” Once again, the hero corrected him:
    “I’m not European. I’m Israeli.” “Well in
    that case,” the journalist said, “the headline
    will read “Israeli kills a boy’s dog in Paris

    Vues Master’s Note: I believe this was tak-
    en from the Anti Semitic New York Times

    School of Journalism!
    Dear Vues Master:
    Amram married Yocheved who was older
    than he & all their three children were
    Vues Master’s Note: Quick! Tell it to the

    Nasi project! If it is a segulah then every-
    one will quickly do it!

    Dear Vues Master:
    A man left a will in which he stated that
    his wife should be banned from his levaya.
    “See what a cruel husband he was,” said
    his wife. “Even in death, he wants to deny
    me a little pleasure.”
    Vues Master’s Note: Poor lady! I feel for
    Dear Vues Master:

    A young guy in shul this morning who
    is visiting from Israel asked me what
    time we would get to Boruchu. I know
    from experience that lots of my fellow
    Orthodox Jews keep a sharp eye on the
    clock while they are davening; in fact,
    the amud that the baal tefillah uses in my
    shul has an actual listing of the various
    times he should be reaching the various
    sections of the service. I find this notion
    absolutely ridiculous! I told the young

    man, “I have no idea. When I’m daven-
    ing I’m talking to Hashem, not looking at

    the clock.” Why on Earth are we so very
    obsessed with time during prayer when
    we should consider ourselves to be in a
    place beyond time and space? There is
    one guy in my shul who, after mincha,

    announces how many minutes and sec-
    onds we have until maariv. This is amaz-
    ingly stupid for a variety of reasons, not

    the least of which is that in the days of
    the gemara there was no such concept as
    seconds. They hadn’t been invented yet!
    And to imagine that G-d is standing in
    heaven with a stopwatch, timing us to see

    if we start the one precise and proper mo-
    ment — and that it matters — is something

    that a small child should be embarrassed
    for thinking. When do we get smarter? It

    reminds me of that pathetic joke. Some-
    one asks a young Orthodox Jew whether

    he ever thinks about G-d. The young
    man responds, “Are you kidding? I get
    up in the morning, say my prayers, wash
    and get dressed, do daf yomi, then I’m
    off to shacharis, then to yeshiva where I

    learn all day, then attend a series of shi-
    urim, then there’s minchah and maariv,

    and then the rav gives a class. When am
    I supposed to find time to think about
    Vues Master’s Note: What a letter! OMG!
    Dear Vues Master:
    Aryeh took his wife to the doctor for a
    check-up. After examining his wife, the
    doctor took Aryeh aside and said to him:
    “I don’t like the look of your wife at all.”
    Aryeh responded: “To tell you the truth
    doctor, I don’t either, but she’s a great cook
    and is very good with the children.”
    Vues Master’s Note: If looks can kill!
    Dear Vues Master:
    The Radoshitzer Rebbe Zt”l (1765–1843)
    said, (about 200 years ago)
    כל הבן – היאורה תשליכוהו
    All men should be thrown into the

    התלמוד ים) learn all day)
    תחיון הבת וכל and the women should earn
    a living (support the family).
    Vues Master’s Note: Kollel here we come!
    Dear Vues Master:
    I was once on a Pesach Levy walking tour
    of the old city in Yerushalayim on erev
    Shabbos many many years ago. Of course
    I was restless and walked (ran ) ahead of
    R’ Pesach Levy. He gave a yell; “Stop!”
    You’re about to enter a doorway to the Har

    Habayis where you would be R”L Chay-
    av Kores! He did take us close to where

    you’re able to still go and pointed out to
    us from far the makom hamizbeach. Vayar
    es Hamokom mrachok Makom Akeidas
    Yitzchak Har Hamoriah! IY”H bkorev
    with Moshiach & Eliyah Hanavi ( not Ben
    Vues Master’s Note: I never knew these
    tour guides are the new poskim!
    Dear Vues Master:
    A man came complaining to the doctor.
    “Doctor, I don’t know what to do,” he
    said, “Every day my wife seems to lose
    her temper for no reason. It scares me.”
    The doctor told him he has a cure for that.
    “When it seems that your wife is getting
    angry, just take a glass of water and start
    swishing it in your mouth. Just swish and

    swish, but don’t swallow it until she ei-
    ther leaves the room or calms down.” Two

    weeks later, the man came back to the
    doctor looking fresh and reborn. “Doctor,
    that was a brilliant idea,” he said. “Every
    time my wife started losing it, I swished
    with water. I swished and swished and
    she calmed right down. How does a glass
    of water do that?” The doctor explained:
    “The water itself doesn’t do anything. It’s
    keeping your mouth shut that does the
    Vues Master’s Note: I heard the same joke
    with a woman who went to the Doctor!
    Dear Vues Master:
    Letter of Appreciation
    לכבוד האי גברא רבה ויקירא האהוב והנחמד
    למעלה ולמטה המזכה את הרבים אשר
    עליו נאמר שאין חטא בא על ידו
    הרב אברהם שאכטער שליט“א

    It’s been several years that I’ve been hear-
    ing about you and your fabulous avodas

    hakodesh, which you have undertaken
    for no reason other than to be mezakeh
    your fellow brothers. I was finally zocheh

    to meet you the evening before the Tefil-
    lin Awareness Event, which took place

    in the Lutsk Bais Medrash on Zos Cha-
    nukah. When I saw you, I saw in you a

    much-larger-than-life figure. I saw in you
    a man who has touched upon the spiritual
    life of literally thousands upon thousands.
    I saw in you a man whom Klal Yisroel
    owes an astounding hakoras hatov. But so
    much more than all that, I saw in you a
    historic figure. I saw in you a man who
    single-handedly changed the course of the
    world, a man who made the world into
    a better place. If I may, I would like to

    elaborate. Ever since the world was cre-
    ated, Hashem has always placed a hand-
    ful of people in each generation to shape

    His world. Although every yid and every
    mitzvah definitely makes a difference,
    nevertheless, generally speaking it is on
    a personal level. It’s between man and his
    Creator. However, there have always been

    a handful of people who changed the nat-
    ural course of the world’s spiritual events.

    To name a few obvious ones. It was the

    Chofetz Chaim who initiated the move-
    ment to be makpid on lashon hora. It was

    Rav Meir Shapiro who initiated Daf Ha-
    yomi. It was the handful of Roshei Yeshi-
    va, Rebbes and Rabbonim who replanted

    Torah and yahadus in the treifa medina of
    America. There was Rav Rosenberg who
    initiated the movement to be makpid on

    shatnez. There is Rav Nechemiah Gottle-
    ib who initiated the tag movement, and

    brought awareness to the dangers of tech-
    nology. And now we have Rav Avraham

    Schachter who has brought awareness to

    the countless common serious Tefillin is-
    sues that often arise. Rav Schachter, I talk

    in the name of so many thousands of my
    fellow yidden – Thank you so much!!
    Vues Master’s Note: We second the notion!

    The Tefillin awareness project does won-
    derful work!