If you’re anything like me, you sometimes feel insignificant in the sea of other congregants at your local minyan. Maybe you dream of absolutely shredding some gnarly Tehillim to impress those on the other side of the mechitza. Well, boy oh boy, do I have some tips for you – listen loud and listen clear, because here comes five totally epic tips and tricks to demonstrate your devotion.
1) Shuckle your heart out
An oldie but a goodie, it can always help to vigorously sway your body back and forth like a palm tree in a hurricane. Everyone will salivate at your supreme service of the Lord our God, creator of the Universe, with the knowledge that your swift rocking can only mean one thing: complete concentration.
2) Say random words along with the chazan
This one is sure to turn some heads. Whenever the chazan is reciting anything out loud, simultaneously blurt out every sixth word or so, just to show everyone that you not only know the place, but that you also know the words. Bonus points if the chazan is singing and you harmonize a few words every now and then!
3) Toss that siddur aside
Not literally, you silly goose! When the congregation reaches the silent amidah, gently put your prayer book down and show everyone that you don’t need to see no words to praise God good. Take this trick to the next level by loudly clapping your siddur shut and then exclaiming with great volume, “Take a look-see, peasants. I have no need for your pathetic leather-bound crutches. Watch as I silently chant all nineteen of these blessings completely from memory” as your eyes glow with the light of the lord and you levitate a few inches off the ground. And when you finish those nineteen blessings before anyone else, sit down as loudly as you can!
4) Upgrade your outfit
Tired of that plain old tallit? At best it’s got a handful of black stripes to jazz it up in an understated minimalism that just translates as lame, and at worst it’s a plain white snoozefest. Maybe pop a couple blue strings on those tassels – that’ll clearly get across the “I’m better than you” message you’re looking for! Not enough? Try some metal scales around the collar, skipping sequins entirely and jumping straight to armor. If that doesn’t turn heads, I don’t know what will. If you normally lay tefillin in the mornings, try upgrading the size of your set. I’m talking cinder block-size, ya feel? Ignore what they tell you: size does matter.
5) Slaughter an animal and offer it onto an altar to the Lord our God, blessed be He
Now that’s what I call a show-stopper! Next time you’re at synagogue, try taking a sharpened blade to the throat of the kosher animal of your choice, set it ablaze on top of a golden altar, and let God inhale those sweet perfumes of praise.