By Mordechai Schmutter

 

  • What day of the week does Pesach start, again?
  • What’s wrong with the vacuum cleaner?
  • Can I fund my entire Pesach with all the change I find cleaning for Pesach?
  • How long has this one pickle been in the back of the fridge?
  • Why are there so many pens in the minivan?
  • What if I sold my car for Pesach and just rented one for chol ha’moed?
  • How come before Pesach, it’s OK to say that your house is completely Pesachdik for two weeks beforehand, but if I say the same thing two weeks after Pesach, people call child services?
  • Is the reason Chazal made our kids such an essential part of the Seder so that we don’t just tape their rooms shut and sell them for Pesach?
  • Is that handprint on the window chametz? Almost definitely, right?
  • My baby likes opening all the bottom cabinets and playing with the pots. Should I clean out those cabinets and put the Pesach pots in there?
  • What day of the week does Pesach start, again?
  • If my kitchen is 20 feet by 15 feet by 10 feet and has cabinets along two walls, how much foil do I need to buy to cover the entire room if I forget to leave a gap for the doorway?
  • When is it a good time to ask this guy I’m going out with what he does and doesn’t eat on Pesach? Should I wait until the second date?
  • How come, even though I’ve seen all types of non-Jews in my life, when I picture the rabbi selling chametz to a non-Jew, I always picture an Arab? In full garb?
  • Also, why do I always picture it being a random non-Jew he flags down outside his house with whom he’s never done this before?
  • Who can we have over for a seudah that is permissive enough to eat in someone else’s house, but not so permissive that they’re scared we’re not going to feed them?
  • Which one is Shulchan Orech, and which one is Shulchan Aruch?
  • How many eggs did we use last Pesach? Should we buy extra to be safe? Is there room in the fridge for that many? Do eggs really need to be refrigerated? Can we put eggs in the freezer?
  • How long does it take to hard boil a frozen egg?
  • Is it just me, or are the stores selling leftover olive oil from Chanukah? Is the sediment supposed to be floating around like that?
  • Why is hand shemurah matzah so expensive? Isn’t challah also made by hand?
  • Whatever happened to lady fingers? Is this a food that disappeared once men started helping more around the kitchen?
  • What exactly qualifies as kitniyos, again? What on earth is a legume? Is it pronounced like “legroom” or like “résumé”?
  • Can I get romaine lettuce cheaper if I order it straight from Romania?
  • Why does my wife keep optimistically buying toothbrushes for Pesach?
  • What do Hagaddos have to do with coffee?
  • Why does the store sell a kids’ Hagaddah that plays music? When is anyone going to use that?
  • Has my kittel been living at the dry cleaner since Yom Kippur?
  • Should I wish the supermarket cashier a good yom tov again? I’ve already done it ten times, and I keep coming back.
  • How many years has it been since I’ve actually cleaned the Pesach cabinet?
  • Hey, it’s our Pesach toothbrushes from last year! Which one is whose?
  • How old is this potato starch?
  • What could I make that my son-in-law can actually eat?
  • Where am I supposed to wash the chametz off my hands if the sinks are Pesachdik?
  • How do I turn on the bathroom sink with my elbows?
  • Did I just throw out another peeler?
  • Did every single food I made today involve the same three ingredients?
  • When does the guy who owns the pizza shop make Pesach? Is that who Pesach Sheini is for?
  • Why does every Pesach fun page have a maze where you have to get to the afikoman? Who hides it at the end of a maze? How about a maze where you have to step around everything you took out in the process of cleaning a room while holding a vacuum cleaner?
  • What day of the week does Pesach start, again?
  • How do I get this bread to catch fire? No Boy Scout handbook ever advises anyone to start a fire using bread. Should I make a fire the normal way and then just add the bread after?
  • Do I need to kasher my barbecue to roast one chicken wing?
  • How does one tell if horseradish has gone bad?
  • Why do bugs like lettuce so much? I only eat lettuce to lose weight. Do bugs need to lose weight?
  • How do I tell if this salt water is salty enough? Is there a recipe somewhere? I know the ingredients; I just need to know amounts.
  • Do we or do we not sing “Shalom Aleichem” on Shabbos that is also yom tov?
  • Why does my kittel close backwards?
  • Why don’t Hagaddos say up front whether they’re Nusach Sefard or Ashkenaz? We don’t realize which ones they are until we’re halfway through Hallel and everyone starts saying a different paragraph at once.
  • Do I choose a Hagaddah that has a lot of divrei Torah, or one where I don’t have to turn so many pages? Because every time I turn a page, something spills.
  • This isn’t really a question, but I can’t believe that I bought over 15 dozen eggs and not a single one came broken, but I have only six functional matzos.
  • How do they decide which broken matzos to put in a box of shevuros and which ones to put in a box of shleimos? Why are the shevuros ones cheaper? Are the broken ones in the box of shleimos there to act as padding for the three whole non-broken ones in the middle of the box?
  • Why do they make afikoman bags that can’t hold the bigger half of a matzah? Do I have to break it again? Then neither part is the bigger half. I have to use what was formerly the smaller half.
  • Can I talk after Urchatz? It feels weird.
  • Why does my kid, who’s been singing the Mah Nishtanah at the top of his lungs for three weeks, suddenly not want to say it at the Seder? Is it because we told him we’re putting him to bed afterward?
  • Why did everyone look at me when they said “Rasha”?
  • Are you supposed to knock out the rasha’s teeth on yom tov? Can I just give him a really hard piece of matzah, and if it happens, it happens?
  • Did I just sit on the afikoman?
  • “We cover the matzos.” Wait. How long have these been covered?
  • Are my kids paying attention to the Hagaddah, or are they just trying to figure out how to steal the afikoman? If I just let them have it already, can we move on?
  • How did we do this last year?
  • Why couldn’t the rebbe just send home an answer key?
  • Why does someone have to go to the bathroom after every single paragraph of Maggid? We’ve had one cup of wine!
  • If you go to a Pesach hotel, where do you hide the afikoman? What if I find someone else’s? Do we specifically have to hide it in our room?
  • Why does the Hagaddah spend an entire page on each makkah? Don’t they realize how fast we breeze through that, and with wine on our hands?
  • Is it just me, or was the matzah better last year?
  • Will I ever swallow this bite of marror?
  • How do I measure my matzah up against this size chart? My matzah isn’t square.
  • How come I can pile horseradish on my gefilte fish every week, but on Pesach, I can’t down one schnapps cup of marror? Is it the beets? I don’t like beets either!
  • Why did I make all this food for Shulchan Orech? I must have been really hungry.
  • How did they hide the afikoman in the old days? Did they hide a lamb? Why not just follow the smell? (“What’s that dripping through the ceiling? Oh, there it is.”) I bet it’s not easy to hide a full-size lamb in a one-room house. Unless they were allowed to use the backyard.
  • What am I supposed to do with the wine in the kos shel Eliyahu after he doesn’t drink all of it? Can I pour it back in the bottle, or is that germs? Can you get germs from someone who lives forever?
  • Can’t I just buy myself a second kittel, and then use the dirty one for Pesach and the clean one for Yom Kippur? Which one would they bury me in?
  • Why does matzah make more crumbs than anything else we ever eat—chametz included? Why do we not have an adequate Pesach broom?
  • How come when I go upstairs after the Seder, I always forget the pillows?
  • Did we lock the door after “Shefoch Chamascha?”
  • How did I put on so much weight at the Seder when I mostly just drank and barely touched Shulchan Orech?
  • Why does everything we’re eating taste like scrambled eggs?
  • What do I do with all this leftover charoses?
  • Why am I always starving at 11 p.m. on the third night of Pesach?

Mordechai Schmutter is a weekly humor columnist for Hamodia and is the author of seven books, published by Israel Book Shop. He also does freelance writing for hire. You can send any questions, comments, or ideas to MSchmutter@gmail.com.

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