I would like to applaud the Forward for tackling my Pesach chart/graph/list.
They do an excellent job in their analysis but some questions indeed are left unanswered.
Why is this chart different from other charts? It appears to be some kind of hybrid chart/calendar/list/graph/contemporary art piece. It is color-coded and employs at least two types of sticky notes, two pens, a set of markers, and graph paper. Should fans of Bialik who are not trained neuroscientists attempt such ambitious chart-making?
Each year is different. I do love all kinds of Post-Its and pens and graph paper of any kind is totally my jam. This year I actually used accounting ledger notebook paper for its flexible columns and prettiness. And I appreciate your acknowledgment that it is a hybrid; indeed, it takes a lot to put this holiday together. Its artistic value is important to me too. I want it to be pretty! And no, you do not need to be a trained neuroscientist to rock this kind of chart.
Does Mayim Bialik sell her chametz [see explanation below…]? According to the chart, on Saturday, April 8th she will “Tie Up Cupboards” — insinuating that these cupboards contain gloriously leavened food. To whom does she sell it? Do various members of “The Big Bang Theory” cast take turns buying it? Do they haggle humorously over the metaphysical nature of chametz sales, or has that joke grown tired after 10 seasons? Do they use the flames from biur chametz as ersatz bunsen burners?
I do sell my chametz (leaven, or food mixed with leaven, prohibited during Passover); it’s included in the “last eating of chametz” notation. There was not room to write both (that column being a tad narrower than I wanted to!). I likely will sell to a non-Jewish neighbor (no, not a TBBT cast member; most of us are actually Jewish!) rather than to a large organization. I don’t begrudge anyone who does; doing so just hasn’t felt good to me the last couple of years. But yes: it shall be sold!
I am part-Hungarian and I recently made a new friend, Michali, who is 100% Hungarian and around her, I feel the way I think I’d feel if I was a horse wearing a fake horn and I met a real unicorn. I want to learn all of her domestic Hungarian ways! She told me they tie up cabinets with pretty ribbons rather than tape like I do (must be my Polish side coming through!). I want to be like Michali. I have tons of ribbon. Can’t wait!
And for biur chametz (burning of the leaven), we use a coffee can and matches and a lot of under-the-breath “Gosh daring”s as we try to burn our chametz.
Did Mayim Bialik invent the term “crazy-tush”?
Maybe! I don’t like to curse. There are young people and modest people who read my posts and I don’t think cursing is necessary really. It places distance between some readers and me, so I really do avoid it most of the time.
What is proud vegan Bialik serving as the main dish at her seder? Her chart reveals plans to make charoset, beet relish, something called “artichoke bottoms”, mock liver, casseroles both eggplant and leek, matzoh balls, eggplant salad, cherry bites, and, enigmatically, “soup”. None of these really scream “entree”. Will Bialik’s guests balk at the fact that an Ashkenazi vegan passover meal means enduring two dishes featuring eggplant? If they do, will she respond via-Youtube video?
Hahaha. Vegans often eat a LOT of sides. Because we don’t eat kitniyot in my house and we don’t eat dairy, proper entrees are hard. The eggplant casserole and leek casseroles are filling, and the artichoke bottoms are sautéed with shallots and they are lovely! The Moroccan salad we serve and the vegan matzoh ball soup in vegetable clear broth (thank you, Navah Atlas!) are hefty starters so we like the idea of lots of smaller dishes as the meal, since everyone gets so full anyway. Plus, in my family, we do tiny potatoes in salt water (and ketchup if you are a child or an adult who feels like a child) as karpas, so we have starch in our tummies already and don’t feel STARVING for the meal itself, which only comes after a long section spent discussing the Passover Exodus story. And the other eggplant dish is actually a roasted bell pepper/chatzilim salad I serve with the charoses (Ashkenazi pronunciation only please!). So I spread out the eggplant, as it were.
I will not take on eggplant-haters on my YouTube channel. As for charoses-haters and haters of my Yiddish accent, yes: you might see that in a video!
How did Mayim Bialik learn how to write such an impressive Hebrew-cursive tsadee sofit? Her chart includes four of them, each flawlessly executed.
Oh my gosh,that means so much to me! Professor Nancy Ezer from the UCLA Near Eastern Languages and Cultures Department gets credit for that. I didn’t learn script until college when I did a minor in Hebrew and Jewish Studies and I learned it from her. I typically use more Hebrew in my charts; this year is a little shvach as we say in Yiddish.
When will #freedomfromwhateverbindsus take off on social media?
God willing, soon. When Eliyahu (Elijah the prophet) tears through the sky on his fiery chariot!
Thank you, Forward for caring as much as I do!