The Weekly Schmooze Purim Special

All the news you need for the annual day of halachically-mandated drunkenness: Battling parody songs; a Megillah for your iPhone.

March 17, 2011 15:08
4 minute read.
The Weekly Schmooze Purim Special!

schmooze purim 311. (photo credit: n\a)

Purim is nigh, and while it may not be a full venahafochu – Really, you didn't expect the Schmooze to be serious, did you? – this week's Schmooze will be in the holiday spirit. No, not drunk, but definitely freilich.

First, we have a musical battle between two parodies. Two groups decided to tell the Purim story using the holiday-appropriate tune "Raise Your Glass" by P!nk:

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Yeshiva University a capella group the Maccabeats, who scored a viral video hit with their Chanukah parody song "Candlelight," are back with an adorable baby Queen Esther taking down a nefarious toddler version of Haman. 

Next, we have the Fountainheads from the Israeli Academy for Leadership in Ein Prat, doing an elaborate masked dance to "Raise Your Mask" with Jerusalem's Old City in the background.

The Maccabeats' video has more hits, but which do you think is better? Vote in the talkbacks!

Anyone familiar with the Purim story knows that it can be pretty graphic, what with the harems and hangings. Yet, Apple does not make exceptions, even for the bible. An illustrated Megillah iPhone app designed by haredi artist Yoel Waxsberger was rejected for being too violent. The problematic drawings are one of Haman's ten sons hanging from a tree, and another of spear-wielding Jews fighting Persians. The artist's Malchut Waxberger Gallery re-submitted the app, omitting the two offending frames. The app, which can be bought here for $0.99, includes the entire text of Megillat Esther, as well as three noisemaking options when the name "Haman" is pressed.

If you want a sanitized version of the Purim story, look no further than Shalom Sesame. It turns out that the classic Jewish Sesame Street segments can all be found on YouTube, along with some new videos. In the Sesame version of Purim, Achashverosh and Esther bond over their shared love of riding bicycles, and Moishe Ufnik makes a brief appearance as Haman.

Are you planning on dressing up this Purim? Jewish humor blog "Bang It Out" has a few easy and au courant costume ideas. For example, you could be Muammar Gaddafi by wearing sunglasses, gelled curls and a muumuu. A Natalie Portman costume consists of a black tutu and a pregnancy bump, or you could be Mark Zuckerberg in a bathrobe and Adidas slip-on sandals.  A Charlie Sheen costume is simple enough – just wear a t-shirt that says "WINNING!"

Costumes are not the only essential element of Purim – there's also the halachically-mandated drinking! Luckily, Jewcy has a "Mad Men"-inspired list of cocktails that match each of the Megillah's characters. Mordechai and Don Draper share a favorite in the Old Fashioned. Esther, with her sneaky, world-saving ways, takes a Gin Martini – probably shaken, not stirred. Vashti, obviously, would drink a Scarlet Harlot, while Haman deserves Death in the Afternoon.

Of course, while we're drinking until we don't know the difference between cursed Haman and blessed Mordechai, Catholics are abstaining from things that are important to them. Stephen Colbert, who declared himself "television's most famous Catholic," decided to give up on Catholicism for Lent, and instead adopted its "cranky grandfather," Judaism. Colbert seems to have a tenuous grasp on the religion, since he decided to give up "not eating bacon" for "Jewish Lent."

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