Friday, October 18, 2019 -
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Purim bailout

Purim offers a terrific release from the mundane –– a time of pure celebration enveloped in a carnival mask. Even as we recount the heroic deeds of Esther in the Megillah, small feet stamp and mouths roar whenever Haman’s name is mentioned. Purim’s serious foundation –– a queen risking everything for her people –– is balanced by costumes, parades and spiels that make willing fools of all of us.

It’s traditional on Purim to send mishlo’ach manot. Technically, this means “the sending of portions.” Don’t get us wrong. Purim baskets are sweet surprises that never fail to delight. But today, many are in dire need of expanding their portions –– and we aren’t talking about hamantaschen. People need to know other people are thinking about them. So send a Purim basket, by all means, but go a step further. Call a friend and ask, “How are you doing?” If that person needs you to come over, go. You don’t have to save an entire people; just be there for one person. (And this time, don’t forget the hamantaschen.)

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