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Apr 26, 2009

Is the ice cream shop next?

A Guest Post by Ruth Wellins

Place your bets on how long it will take until the new ice cream shop in the RBS mercaz is shutdown/firebombed/loses it's hechsher....

I took my sister and daughter to try out a scoop or two from the new ice cream shop in the mercaz. We went motsei shabbat at about 10:15pm and found the place heaving with American teenagers, with many of them hanging out outside, smoking and chatting noisily. They were quite a happy bunch of young teen girls and boys, making a fair bit of noise as teenagers do, and my immediate thought was "Uh-oh" there is no way that the locals are are going to put up with this. There were also some somber faced Israeli charedi men lurking around across the road muttering into their pelefones and looking very disapprovingly at the scene.

Once i got inside and chatted to some of the kids i realized that a. these are local kids; b. the girls were all dressed appropriately, (though in the trendy style rather than Beis Yaacov style); c. there was no 'negiah' or inappropriate hugging kissing etc. It was just some local kids who wanted to have an ice cream on a motsei shabbat. In a couple of years my kids would probably like to do the same. This is a lot like what i used to do with my friends when i was about their age. Nice kids having some fun, hanging out and not causing any trouble. Maybe people who came earlier saw other behavior, but this is what i saw at 10.15pm. When we left, the store closed at 10:30 on the dot, and the nice staff seemed to take this closing time very seriously and turned people away with a smile and a nice word.

I'm sure it won't take long for the local extremists to try to shut the store down or prevent it from opening on a Saturday night or G-d forbid, start throwing eggs at the kids. And then they will feel very righteous that they have prevented such an abomination and blatant disregard of 'tznius' in their neighborhood.

I hope they don't, because it is nice for our teens to have somewhere safe and harmless to go on a motsei shabbat. There's nothing else to do round here, and the only other option is to hang out in the park, which is basically boring and puts them at risk from the infamous drug pushers. At the moment i am lucky as my kids are still young, but in a few years they will be wondering what they can do for entertainment on a motsei shabbat. We have no cinema or mall or bowling or anything interesting to do, and i would really rather that they didn't just hang out in the park all night. I would love it if they could go and have a pizza with friends, or failing that, go get an ice cream and socialize a bit. Is that really too much to ask??

18 comments:

  1. I see that you have a clear preference for your children to eat pizza on motzai shabbat rather than ice cream. Is this from a nutritional, philosophical, or financial perspective?

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  2. Modiin has at least one scoop shop, several pizza shops, two cinemas (so far), and a bowling alley. And a mall.

    Come... join us... it's bli-i-i-i-ss.

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  3. I assume pizza is a lo plug from motzai pesach.

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  4. Yoni,
    Glad you're enjoying the wonderful facilities of Modiin.
    We don't want to run away from RBS. Our kids are in great schools, we helped build and enjoy our great shul, we have wonderful neighbours. We like it here. We have no intention of being forced from our homes by intolerant yobs.
    In Har Nof the haredi residents have achieved a peaceful co-existence with the Dati Leumi residents. I hope and pray that one day RBS will attain this mutual tolerance.

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  5. why not get somebody open an ice cream store on maor next to the pizza shop and everyone will be happy. (and maybe somebody with a big basement up the hill could turn it into a movie thatre) and then all is set for the kiyum of the mitvah of hanging out on a saturday night.
    gee the good old days, when nothing was wrong with boys and girls innocently hanging out together without any negiah. back in those days before the crazy chareidim reinterpeted those things like Lo Sikravu legalos ervah to mean more than physical contact (actually Reb Moshe Held talking to a girl just because she is a girl is at best an issur deoraysah see igros moshe)

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  6. in the good old days I also hung out, whether it was bowling, pizza, or SLice of Life, or wherever, but it was with my friends or my brothers. hanging out and enjoying a saturday night does not require mixing between boys and girls.

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  7. Maybe we could ask the proprietor to open one small girls shop on 1 side of the mercaz, and a boys shop on the far opposite site of the mercaz.

    Then they can also make separate entrances for Yesh (because it's busy and people bump into each other) and the bakery (same reason, and because they have cream puffs which shouldn't be purchased in mixed company).

    The 'nothing to do' argument is a real one I hear from my teenagers, and happen to agree with. There are things taht could be done if anyone cared to.

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  8. cream puffs shouldn't be purchased in mixed company?

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  9. "back in those days before the crazy chareidim reinterpeted those things like Lo Sikravu legalos ervah to mean more than physical contact (actually Reb Moshe Held talking to a girl just because she is a girl is at best an issur deoraysah see igros moshe)"

    Isn't amazing that with all of our hanging out in "those days" there were far less off the derech" kids and problems?

    Perhaps we should examine whether or not our extreme move to the right has really produced a better generation.

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  10. I second the motion to open a hang out on Maor or some other place where the "locals" a) like it, b) approve of it, and c) want it.

    If its in the Merkaz, which is in the middle of the chareidi area, in which the "locals" dont want it - why shouldnt they protest it?

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  11. who says there was less "going off the derech"? maybe the issue was not recognized as the type of problem it is today.
    And today we have internet, and tniyus issues, and those are to blame for the kids going off the derech.

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  12. Modiin sounds nice in theory until you look at cost of living! What we need is a good, frequent, bus!

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  13. Why can't we just stay here and live together.

    I'm sorry that every aspect of my life (kippa,flag,politics,kid's schools, tzedakos and hechsherim) might offend some of the residents here. If they wanted a ghetto they should have stayed in Meah Shearim/geulah or moved to Kiryat Sefer,Bnei Brak or Beitar.

    I live a life äl pi Torah" and expect to be given the same derech eretz that I extend to others.

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  14. Actually, our friends in Kiryat Sefer and B'nai Brak think what is going on here is insane and are THRILLED not ot have these people in their quieter communities.

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  15. Is that really too much to ask??Yes. In certain communities, it is not acceptable for boys and girls to socialize together. That's just how it is.

    Mark

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  16. If they wanted a ghetto they should have stayed in Meah Shearim/geulah or moved to Kiryat Sefer,Bnei Brak or Beitar.[space]

    But they did! They moved to RBS and created a new "ghetto" (by the way, I find the use of that word to be incredibly offensive because of its etymology, we need a better word, maybe "enclave"?).

    I live a life äl pi Torah" and expect to be given the same derech eretz that I extend to others.[space]

    Some their Torah is a little different than yours, and theirs apparently doesn't include derech eretz.

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  17. "why not get somebody open an ice cream store on maor next to the pizza shop and everyone will be happy"

    What a waste of resources! There is absolutely no reason that a pizza shop can't sell ice cream too.
    I understand not wanting boys and girls to mix. But, pizza and ice cream are quite fine together.

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  18. The words of this post have been my thoguhts ever since the place opened! Well done Ruth!

    Ari Enkin

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