Frustrated Gabai’s Hand Signals Doing Most Of Work For Underprepared Bar Mitzvah Boy

CLEVELAND, OH — Despite the best efforts of Gabai Steve Ben-Yosef’s fervent hand signals, it was clear to everyone attending young Benny Haim’s Bar Mitzvah at Temple Beth Am this past weekend that Haim was underprepared to read his Torah portion. 

“After the runt stuttered and blubbered his way through the second Aliyah, I knew I had to take matters into my own dextrous and emotive hands,” quoted Steve, mopping sweat from his brow immediately after Hagba was completed. “I shimmied, I wiggled, I karate-chopped as hard as I could – if only we had agreed on hand signals beforehand.”

As the service continued, Steve’s wife Freida noticed her husband’s carpal tunnel syndrome worsening.

“I could see Stevie’s wrist acting up because of that wretched hobgoblin,” said Frieda, “So, when maftir came, I figured I’d back my husband up. He was working too hard, and that kid wasn’t working hard enough.” Haim was reportedly hospitalized for a brief period the following week after the grapefruit Sunkist Frieda threw scratched his cornea. 

Doctors say his sight should return to normal in a few days, at which point he will surely be able to read from the Torah again – unfortunately, no one wants to see that happen.

תנא קמא, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons, with modifications

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