Monday, April 10, 2006

Annual Passover Shopping Post

It shouldn’t surprise me but it always does. My local grocery stores order a minimum of Holiday supplies, and if they have anything left when the Holiday actually starts they send it back. I’d planned to shop today. But when I got out of class, I really didn’t feel like going. Then I looked up and saw the moon. Almost full, it was a reminder of the lunar calendar. So, off to Safeway, where I’d seen a seasonal display. But that was three weeks ago. I hadn’t been ready to stock up, and oh yeah, had not gotten my student loan farfel so far.

There’s a Yiddish proverb that I once read in translation: “There’s always money for matzah and shrouds.” It’s a powerful idea that in addition to the basics of biology, there are certain ritual objects that people can’t do without. And that even the underemployed, or the uncharitable, somehow scramble around to make things happen for themselves and their communities.

Even though the Holiday had not yet begun apparently they had already sent back everything. The display no longer existed. Nor had it been moved. I drove to another part of town. It was Ghettoization in action.

So now I have matzah, and I have fishcakes in a jar, and imported grape juice both with and without carbonation. I got the apples and walnuts and honey and butter, also some lettuce and parsley. I don’t have anything for a main course yet, but that should be easy.

For bitter herbs I am going to reconstitute some dried wasabi just like I did last year. That reminds me of another Yiddish proverb: “To a worm in wasabi, the wasabi is sweet.” It does have some sweetness along with the bitter.

Must hard boil some eggs….

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