September 2017

Mazel & Mishagoss


By Stephanie Lewis


“You are traveling through another dimension, a dimension not only of sight and sound but of (delicious) smells and (boastful) kvells. A journey into a neurotic land whose boundaries are not limited by schlepping/shmoozing. That’s the signpost up ahead (Can you see it hung in the right-hand side of the doorframe?) Your next stop … The ChaiLight Zone!”


Maybe you’ve heard The Twilight Zone was updated with Jewish themes? Actually, you haven’t heard this because I made it up. But here are new episodes that might seem familiar to you. (Cue “Rod Shpieling’s” distinctive voice)


The One Where Rumors Fly

“Submitted for your approval: The case of one Dr. Jeffrey Greenberg, a big macher surgeon who gossips about patients, until he’s ordered to operate on a pillow, removing its feathers. Scalpel in hand, he watches helplessly as the sterile room fills with thousands of fuzzy plumes swirling everywhere, one quill even managing to land inside a patient’s open chest cavity before getting stitched up from quadruple bypass surgery. Oy vey! In just a moment you’ll meet the Prophet Elijah, who advises the good doctor to take back every single, solitary feather. A grim prognosis and an impossible antidote? Perhaps. But just one of the many Hasidic lessons to be learned in . . . The ChaiLight Zone.


The One Where They Almost Moved To a Larger Hovel

Meet Mr. Ephraim Ben-Meir and his wife Rivka, an ambitious young couple inhabiting a modest dwelling on a tiny farm. They kvetch to a mystical Rabbi about feeling confined. A word to the wise about simple solutions from Torah scholars – once horses, chickens, goats, cows, (NOT pigs!) ducks, and roosters are carried into an abode, “Home Sweet Home” will never smell that sweet again. But yes, once the animals are returned to their barn, the square footage will seem to increase miraculously. This is a special kabbalah teaching Mr. and Mrs. Ben-Meir will find rampant in The ChaiLight Zone.


And of course, some beloved classic Twilight Zone episodes are just too good to change, so they’re modified in ways we endearingly recognize as totally mashuga.


The Eye of the (Bubula) Beholder — A young wannabe female singer with a bandaged punim has undergone rhinoplasty to try and make her nose size more appealing. When the plastic surgeon’s handiwork is finally unveiled, everyone gasps in horror! The bridge is still very petite and adorably upturned. But the woman belts out “The Way We Were,” and Barbra goes on to immediate fame anyhow.


Nightmare (Narishkeit) at 20,000 Feet — An orthodox airline passenger is convinced there is a golem on the exterior of the plane. He doesn’t fear the golem is trying to wreak havoc on the overbooked aircraft, but rather it’s baking a challah using the fiery wing as an oven. And that’s simply not kosher.


Time Enough at Last (For Simchas!) — Instead of a bookworm in a library who yearns for more time to read, (but then his glasses smash so he can’t see a thing) – we have a Jewish event planner who hankers for Chanukah to continue for a year so she can throw lots of festive parties. Her wish comes true when she finds a batch of oil that miraculously lights the menorah for 365 days. However her glasses also shatter. That’s right, her entire set of Waterford crystal wine glasses! And what kind of freilich shindig can you have without pouring lots of Manischewitz concord grape? Nu?


Stephanie D. Lewis pens humor for The Huffington Post, has a funny blog at and will also write for you! Email


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