Tuesday, March 5, 2024 -
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Mathematics vs. nachas

Dear Tzviling,

My daughter wants to get married and is getting a lot of offers of fine young men. Many friends have told me to make sure to check out the family background. You know, the parents, siblings, uncles and aunts — even cousins. Is this really that important? After all, my daughter won’t be marrying the relatives. We value your opinion. What do you think?

Grace, (via e-mail)

Dear Grace,

We think you have great friends.

Go for it. You will learn a lot about the family — and the boy. And remember, they will be checking you out as well.

Which reminds us of the following story:

Mordy, preparing his Bar Mitzvah speech, asked his mom about their ancestry.

Mom spoke of her illustrious background, all the way back to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

“And where did they come from?”

“From Adam and Chava (Eve).”

“And they?”

“G-d created them.”

Mordy wrote it down and then went to dad. (Children love second opinions.)

“Where do we come from?” asks Mordy.

“Ah, we come from the apes. After millions of years of evolution, we evolved into humans.”

“And the apes?”

“Ah, they evolved from other primates.”

“And where did it all begin?” asks Mordy.

“Ah”, says dad, “it all began with bacteria.”

Mordy — totally confused — comes running back to his mom.

“Mom, you said we come from Abraham, Adam, Chava and G-d.

“Dad says we come from the apes, monkeys and bacteria.”

“No contradiction here, Mordy,” she said.

“Your father was talking about his side of the family; I was talking about my side of the family.”

Dear Tzviling,

What do you think would be better — to go back in time or to see the future?

Andy, Hampstead, Canada

Dear Andy,

To quote a favorite saying we heard from a good friend, a Holocaust survivor, Reb Efraim (Fred) Englard of blessed memory:

Yesterday is history

Tomorrow is a mystery.

Today is a gift.

And that’s why they call it ‘the present.”

SEND your questions to [email protected] to be answered with wit, wisdom and humor by identical twins Rabbis Yisroel Engel (Denver) and Shloime Engel (Montreal) who share their combined 100 years of experience.

Copyright © 2013 by the Intermountain Jewish News

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