21 Mar SPEAK YOUR VUES WITH THE VUES MASTER
Dear Vues Master:
Why does everything go up in price right around Pesach? This year eggs are over $4 a dozen. Mat-zohs are over $50 a pound in some stores. A typical heimishe family goes through more than 20 dozen eggs and 10 pounds. of matzah just over the 8 days of Pesach. What are we to do?
Vues Master’s Note: It is all Trump’s fault it stems from Jan 6 riots! It’s not funny if you don’t believe me, ask Biden!
THE GERMAN SHEPHERD
Dear Vues Master
I just heard the most amazing story that I know your readers will absolutely love!!! Rabbi Ron Yitzchok Eisenman, the Rav of Congregation Ahavas Israel in Passaic, NJ said it over. Bernard Hillstein (name changed) had finally conceded he could no longer live alone and had to enter an assisted living facility. He always craved warmer weather. So when Bernie found an assisted living complex in southern Flor-ida, which had a shul and was completely Shomer Shabbos, he hurriedly signed the lease. He noticed the fine print only after his deposit was cashed, and he gave up the lease on his apartment in New Jersey. Ever since Ethel, his wife of 56 years, passed away six years ago, Bernie welcomed Oakley into his home on the advice of his doctors. Bernie acquired Oakley, a German Shepard, as a service-guide dog to help him get on his own. Over the last six years, Oakley has become Bernie’s constant companion. Without Oakley, Bernie doesn’t know how he would have survived Covid. As he and Ethel had no chil-dren and his own eyesight was failing, without Oak-ley in the apartment, Bernie would have suffered the greatest pain of all, complete loneliness. As you can imagine, Bernie was worried when he noticed in the fine print that no pets, including service animals, were allowed in the assisted living facility. Bernie immediately came to my office and asked me to help him get some waiver or exception to the no-pets rule. Bernie could not imagine moving without his beloved Oakley. I listened to Bernie and called the facility. The manager listened to me calmly and politely, yet, he was firm in explaining the rule of no pets meant no pets, period. No waivers and no exceptions are possible. I called the Rabbi, the Chaplain of the facility, yet, he, too, explained that his hands were tied. He had no clout or authority to allow Bernie to bring Oakley to the facility. Bernie was beside himself with grief. He had already given up his New Jersey apartment and signed the lease in Florida. Yet, the thought of abandoning Oakley, which meant living alone, felt like a death sentence to Bernie. I made more phone calls, and finally, the exasperated assisted living manager said, “Look, these are the rules. If you want, call Mr. Hertzler; he owns the facility, and only he can give you permis-sion. However, he’s an elderly Chassidishe Yid. I highly doubt he will be interested in allowing a dog in his facility.” As only Hashem could orchestrate things, Mr. Hertzler, who rarely left Florida, would be in New York for a family simcha. I was able to arrange a face-to-face meeting with him that Sun-day evening. When I arrived at the house where he was staying in Boro Park, my expectations were not high for success. Mr. Hertzler, who was more com-fortable in Yiddish than English, was a Chassidishe Yid. When I shook hands, I could not fail to notice the blue numbers on his forearm. I realized this would be a mission in futility as what 95-year-old Holocaust survivor would allow a German Shepard to live as a guest in his facility? Nevertheless, after making many phone calls to set up this meeting and traveling to Brooklyn from Passaic, I had to make my plea. If (or more likely, when) he says no, I’ll know I tried my best. Mr. Hertzler was extremely hospitable, offering me delicious kokush cake and strong sweet tea, After schmoozing a little about my Shul, I got down to the point and explained the situ-ation and why Bernie needed to have Oakley live with him. I stressed how Oakley was all Bernie had in his life and what a Mitzvah it would be to al-low him to have Oakley live with him. Mr. Hertzler listened patiently and then responded by quoting a pasuk, “Lo Yechratz Kelev L’Shono” (“But not a dog shall growl against any of the people of Israel” – Shemos 11:7). I thought perhaps Mr. Hertzler was not focusing on what I said. I repeated my plea, and he repeated the passuk. He then looked at me and said with a smile. “I have been waiting for you to come for seventy-eight years. Of course, your friend can bring his dog. In fact, I will personally pay for all of the dog’s needs.” My perplexed expression must have conveyed my confusion, as Mr. Hertzler explained. “In 1945, towards the war’s end, the Nazis were evacuat-ing the lager (Concentration Camp). As I knew the Russians were just days in arriving, I decided to hide under the bar-racks in a crawl space. The Nazis took their German Shepherds to sniff out any Jews. Anytime the dog smelled a Jew, it began barking. As the Nazi and his dog neared my crawl space, I repeatedly dav-ened with all my heart, “U’Lchol Bnei Yisroel Lo Yechratz Kelev L’Shono.” To my amazement, the dog passed right by me. I could smell its breath, yet, the dog made no sound and kept moving. It was then I made a promise to Hashem. Just as Hashem paid the dogs back for not barking by Yetzias Mitzrayim, I would also pay back a German Shepard for not barking at the time of my own personal Yetzias Mitzrayim. Finally, the day I have been waiting for has arrived. Tell your friend he and Oakley will be my honored guests.” I sat there stunned and speechless. Mr. Hertzler placed an-other piece of koksuh cake on my plate as he said with Simcha, “You thought you came to ask me for a favor. How-ever, the opposite was true; Hashem sent you here to allow me to pay back my seventy-eight-year-old debt. Please, let us make a L’Chaim together to thank Hashem for His kindness.” “If Not Now, Then When?”- Hillel
Vues Master’s Note: What a great story! Thanks for sharing!
Dear Vues Master,To the mothers, fathers, grandmoth-ers, grandfathers, sisters, and brothers of Bnos Yisroel, It was reported that there were serious discussions recently among senior Roshei Yeshiva regarding the shidduch crisis and the indisputable fact that the age gap plays a major role in creating and perpetuating the crisis. Many options were on the table on how to deal with the problem, but no conclu-sion has yet been reached. I plead with each one of you to approach every Rosh Yeshiva you know and very respectful-ly explain to them what you are going through. Don’t be ashamed to tell them that your amazing daughter is in the par-sha for a year, two, three or more and she has not gone out on even one date. This scenario is unfortunately extremely normal, and it does not in any way re-flect poorly on you or your daughter. In fact, the vast majority of us are going through the same situation. Inform them how few serious shidduch suggestions you receive and how difficult it is to even get through to a competent shad-chan. Don’t underestimate the power of the individual to be the catalyst of real change. The Roshei Yeshiva need to hear from the tzibur the full magnitude of the problem so that they should be motivated to make the painful conces-sions and bold moves that Klal Yisroel so desperately needs. I know it is hard to believe but many roshei yeshiva are unaware of the full extent of what is go-ing on and some even say that all this can’t be true because they are not hear-ing about it from their former talmidim (now fathers). It is time to stop suffer-ing in silence and to try to do something positive for our girls. If we don’t wake up now and do our small part, we will have only ourselves to blame ’. Do כי אם החרש תחרישי בעת הזאת וגוnot allow statements regarding bitachon to ruin your resolve to do what you can. Of course, each one of us needs to have bitachon so that their daughter will be from the lucky 80%-85% to find a hus-band but our hearts still need to bleed for the other 15%-20%. Please pick up the phone and respectfully do what you can, and of course, don’t forget to daven and cry to Hashem that your hishtadlus should bear fruit and the roshei yeshiva should have the strength and resolve to bring an end to this terrible gezeira. Let us leave the details of the exact solution to them, but Klal Yisroel desperately needs them to come up with an answer now. As Rav Elya Ber Wachtfogel of South Fallsburg said, this is the biggest tzara facing Klal Yisroel and continuing to do nothing is simply not an option. The Roshei Yeshiva are in the drivers seat and they can and will bs”d get the job done but we need to do our part.
Sincerely, A Yid with a Heart
Vues Master’s Note: With all this we may not solve the problem. It could be like global warming!
Dear Vues Master:I just came back from a chasuna and the noise was insanely loud. Am I the only one that thinks that? I feel like it’s get-ting louder & louder.
Vues Master’s Note: It is an age factor! The older I get the louder it gets!
Dear Vues Master:R’ Yaakov Kamenetzky zt”l used to teach Mishnah Berurah for ten minutes or so during the Shabbos minyan in his home in Monsey. When he learned the three minhagim regarding sitting and/or standing during Kiddush, one of the congregants asked, “What does the rosh yeshiva do?” he answered, “I do what my father did,” and he continued learn-ing. A late friend of mine, one of the first talmidim of Rav Aharon Kotler zt”l in Lakewood, told me that the rosh yeshiva once said that he would like to follow the ruling of the Vilna Gaon not to put on tefillin on Chol HaMoed, “But what can I do? My father put on tefillin, so I must do so (ArtScroll, Rav Nosson Scherman). When Pesach comes the Torah commands that the children be present before their father so it’s much more than a mesora. There is no way to weasel out of it since even the wicked son has to be there.
Vues Master’s Note: My minhag is to forget my minhag from year to year and make it up as I go along! That was my father’s minhag too!
Dear Vues Master:
I just want to publicly say THANK YOU to all the wives out there that are working very hard this month getting ready for Pesach. Every Shabbos it’s hard work in itself, but Pesach is REAL-LY hard. Between cleaning & cooking especially for the people that stay home it’s exhausting. Kol Hakavod!!!
Vues Master’s Note: Now if one of them could come to my house I would appre-ciate it!
Dear Vues Master:It’s amazing how many Kosher L’Pesach items are out there. I have a hard time believing that this is the way we are sup-posed to be celebrating the Yom Tov of Pesach. There is very little that you can’t get these days.
Vues Master’s Note: Why not? There is a new phone out every year so why not new foods!
Dear Vues Master:It is absolutely insane. I went through the Jewish Vues very carefully last week & went with my wife shopping this past weekend in three different local super-markets. The price of kosher food is in-sane. It is definitely up more than 20% than last year. How does a family of 8 survive? BH there are organizations out there that are helping out, but still this is crazy.
Vues Master’s Note: Biden will tell you things are OK! Look, he raised the mini-mum wage and gave us vaccines for free. Things are great!
Dear Vues Master:I just heard that EL AL put in all their sinks a netilas yadayim cup. What a great idea!! It’s great that EL AL i s now owned by a frum person.
Vues Master’s Note: Now if we could only bargain when it comes to my ticket price!
Dear Vues Master:I went to the grand opening of Amaz-ing Savings in Boro Park this past Sun-day. Wow, what a store!! It took them 7.5 years to build it, but it’s really nice, I wish them much hatzlacha!!!
Vues Master’s Note: Let’s just hope they do better than G & Sons!!
Dear Vues Master:I just heard this story & I thought that your readers would appreciate it very much. An Orthodox Jew from New Jer-sey was involved in a car accident and accidently killed an old non-Jewish man. Although the courts found the Jew-ish man not guilty, he could not carry the pains of the guilt that he killed an old man. It gave him no peace and it caused him to lose his appetite and was unable to sleep for weeks. He decided to seek counsel from the revered sage, Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky zt”l of Bnei Brak, and wrote him a letter asking the Rav what tikun can he do because he acci-dently killed a non-Jew. The Rav wrote him an answer that included one word, “Amalek”. The Jew did not understand this answer and continued suffering with sleepless nights. At some point he decid-ed to move away from his town to begin a new life. He began searching for a new house and found a house that appealed to him. The owners of the apartment told him that they are eager to get rid of this house because they inherited it from their dead father that was killed in a car accident. After a short investigation, it turns out the apartment belonged to the non-Jew who was accidentally killed by the Jew. In the basement of the house, the Orthodox Jew found materials be-longing to the old non-Jew man. He was shocked to find a picture of the old man during his youth proudly wearing an SS uniform, standing next to Hitler, yimach shemo. It turned out that this old man was an SS officer in the Nazi army and after the war, he came to the United States and hid his past. The SS Nazi Of-ficer also hid other documents, including all the names of the Jews he personally murdered. When he read the names of the Jewish people that were murdered, he found both of his parent’s names on this list. HaShem avenged their blood. It was then that he understood Rabbi Chaim Kanievsky zt”l’s answer that contained one word, “AMALEK”.
Vues Master’s Note: May all our en-emies be wiped out!
Dear Vues Master:Israel is the fourth happiest country in the world, according to the 2023 World Happiness Report (WHR), which was released this past Monday. The publica-tion ranks happiness on a national level each year. This year, Israel earned the fourth spot out of 109 ranked countries, an improvement over last year’s ranking of ninth. The survey measures subjec-tive well-being through how people re-port the quality of their lives to be.
Vues Master’s Note: I was so happy to read this letter! So I will clap my hands and show it!
Dear Vues Master:As Pesach is approaching, one of the necessary things to buy is of course, matzoh. But lately people are trying to get a specific kind of matzo- and will pay a nice chunk of money for it. I’m talking about the extra thin, paper taste matzo. For some reason, all year long, people can munch on all different types of hard crackers and pretzels- but when it comes to Pesach, they need to have extra extra thin matzo that tastes like paper. And they will pay a nice fine for it. What is the meaning of this? Why do people have to work like animals so you don’t have to bite the matzo. Chill. It’s not so bad. You can chew on the matzo. Be glad you have teeth to bite it. Don’t tell me that you have to feel like kings- so you need to have this “luxury” of ex-tra thin matzo. A king can also bite into something hard and it won’t take away from his honor. You are wasting your money on something that is very un-necessary. Wake up and realize what is important.
Vues Master’s Note: Wait till you try to eat your kzaisim in less than three min-utes!
Dear Vues Master:Chametz Cleaning Tips1.. Open a new file on your PC.2.. Name it “Chometz.”3.. Send it to the RECYCLE BIN.4.. Empty the RECYCLE BIN.5.. Your PC will ask you, “Are you sure you want to delete Chometz permanent-ly?”6.. Calmly answer, “Yes,” and press the mouse button firmly……7.. Feel better?Works every time!
Vues Master’s Note: It will be gone like the dust in the wind!
Dear Vues Master:When asked to give an example of a קל וחומר, a ganuv said: “Now, you can’t take money out of my pocket whenever you want, but I can do so; therefore, since you can take money out of your pocket whenever you want, I can cer-tainly do so.”
Vues Master’s Note: I think it works the other way around when it comes to do-ing teshuva!
Dear Vues Master:As a frequent babysitter, I couldn’t help but notice that there is a large lack in our community. I often get many calls a night , with people asking me if I can babysit. I always wished I can be every-where, so that I can help out with this need. Being that it’s not practical, I de-cided to open a babysitting organization. I have a list of females, High School age and above, who babysit in the evenings. When people call, I try to connect them with the babysitters. All babysitters have had a short interview, and after that I call references they provided, to ensure that they’re safe and responsible. This need is so necessary, and I’m trying to get the word out so that I can help people. If you live in Flatbush or Boro Park,and babysit, please reach out to me. There’s absolutely no fee involved, and babysit-ters get paid their regular rate. And if you need babysitters, reach out as well. Hopefully I can help! Text or WhatsApp me at 7326639606-
Vues Master’s Note: Will they watch my German Shepard too?
Dear Vues Master:A man once brought his son to Rebbe Yitzchok Elchanan and asked the rebbe to test him on his studies. The rebbe tested the boy on a particular Rashi and afterwards said to the father “Your son is like the early Gaonim.” The father’s face lit up with nachas. After they left, the rebbe explained to those present: “The boy is like the early Gaonim because, having preceded Rashi, they of course didn’t know Rashi. The same holds true for this boy. He doesn’t know Rashi.”
Vues Master’s Note: He was a great taa-nis Cholom in Yerushalayim! He knew Gemara Rashi and toite fees!
Dear Vues Master:Baruch Hashem I’m told that I make a delicious chocolate cake. I try to make it every Shabbos for my family. Some-times I’ll make extra for family and friends to enhance their Shabbos meal or to help them out when there’s a situ-ation in their home that week. My hus-band is BH a Baal chesed and likes to help people out. He’s asked me to make a little extra for a Yiddishe Neshama in the neighborhood who lives alone. I’m happy to make a little extra when I can, but sometimes I’ve had a hard week and find it challenging to bake for my own family. For years I’ve done my best to help out, but sometimes this person tells my husband that what I make isn’t enough and “demands” a larger portion. I don’t think this is said jokingly, and quite frankly it’s not funny in any case. I don’t think I should be told how much and when to give. Is there a precedent in the Torah about this kind of chesed? Should I chalk it up to bad middos? Should I feel bad for this person and continue to make cake?-Feeling Unappreciated & Pressured
Vues Master’s Note: I think so! As the person wants to get his cake and eat it too!