Whether you only attended a Jewish day school for a couple of years as a kid, or are a Jewish school lifer (like a "preschool through your PhD in Modern Jewish Literature at Brandeis, with perhaps a gap year in Israel in between" lifer), you've definitely struggled against — and hopefully eventually succeeded in getting a handle on — certain elements of the very unique Jewish school experience. Like strictly kosher lunches, weekend Shabbatons, school musicals with all the
songs translated into Hebrew, and potentially difficult (and totally nonnegotiable) dress codes that followed you through your school years. These rules and lessons impacted you so deeply that whether you graduated last week or a decade ago, the
real world —where you can eat anything and do whatever you want with your
weekends — remains a kind of amazing novelty.
Of course, the post-Jewish school life lacks some of Jewish school's charms, too — real life isn't postponed for 30 minutes for Rosh Chodesh any more, alas. But there are definitely some experiences (and Hebrew words) that will stick with you for the rest of your life. And yes, my Bachelors Degree in Modern Jewish studies was very useful in writing this. So no matter how many years you are a removed from those compulsory Hebrew classes, these are 21 things anyone who went to Jewish school will understand.
1. You Still Expect To Have Every Jewish Holiday Off
2. Your Facebook Feed Is Always Full Of Recipes For The Next Jewish Holiday
3. You're Used To Packing A Dairy Lunch
4. You Still Complain About The Number Of Hebrew Classes You've Taken In Your Lifetime
5. .את יכולה לקרוא את המשפט הזה
6. Most Of Your Friends Are Jewish
7. And All Of Your New Jewish Friends Know Your Old Jewish Friends
8. Your Non-Jewish Friends Call You "Rabbi" Or "Super Jew"
9. Your Social Peak Was At 13
10. You've Dated Multiple Davids, Joshes, And/Or Bens
11. You Can Discuss In Detail Events From 1948, 1967, 1973, And 1987
12. Martin Buber, Abraham Joshua Heschel, And Shalom Aleichem Are All Familiar Names To You
13. When You Go Out On Friday Nights, You Refer To It As "Shabbat Dinner"
14. The First Thing You Notice About A Door Is Whether It Has A Mezzuzah
15. You're Embarrassingly Ignorant Of Christian Traditions
What is an Easter?
16. Half Of Your Former Classmates Are Engaged...
17. ...But It Seems Like The Other Half Are Already Married...
18. ...And Have Probably Made Aliyah, Too
19. You've Taught Your Phone The Abbreviation 'JDS'
20. Your Diploma Says You Graduated In 5770
21. You Probably Work At A Jewish Company