Four things which you might need to explain to your non-Jewish friend

By, Theo, Contributor

As a non-Jew, I love spending time with Jewish friends. I get the chance to really deepen my understanding about the oldest monotheistic religion in existence, with people who genuinely know what they’re talking about. Plus, I can validate the usually completely hollow assertion that “some of my best friends are Jewish.”

Admittedly though, there is sometimes a bit of a learning curve. Here are four things which, for a goy like me, took a bit of getting used to.

Kosher rules

Let’s start with the obvious. Yeah, I get that you can’t eat non-kosher meat. But why aren’t you having milk in your tea? Thought the cinnamon challenge was hard, try swallowing parve cake. A little lesson about how Kosher food actually works is almost certainly worth the hassle. Separate sinks, no mixing with dairy, slaughter methods. You’ll be surprised at how little is understood.

Friday Night Dinner

It turns out that knowing where “Shalom Jackie” comes from doesn’t mean anything. And that, even though FND is only slightly more important than any other meal, getting pumped and ready for it usually takes up at least half of the week.


All too often it seems that my question, “Are you going to ask her out?” is responded to with the inane excuse: “Nah, she’s not Jewish, so.” To quote the Killers frontman Brandon Flowers, “it was only a kiss.” And to say that no one you go out with will ever compare to your mum or dad sounds properly Freudian.

Random Yiddish & Hebrew words

Happily I already knew a bit about the Sabbath, Passover, and synagogue. But it turned out that all it demonstrated was that I had no clue whatsoever about Shabbat, Pesach and shul. And when I finally built up the chutzpah to toast L’chaim! I didn’t quite get that sound at the back of the throat. Ghchghch… nope.

Featured Image: Unsplash/AmitLahav

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