Someone asked me if I was Jewish on the subway today.
This could only have been due to the following:
a.) She was reading a Hebrew book, and thought I was reading along intently as I was forced to strap-hang like a vulture over her seat.
b.) She's lonely and wants a Jew-friend, or is a bit odd and wants to spread the Jew-word
c.) She thinks I look Jewish.
I will have to assume here that c.) is the most probable here, since I have much experience in being perceived as a Jewish-looking gal. This is the entire basis for my documentary; for the theme of this blog even. I think I can tell when someone is intermittently looking up from their beloved book of Hebrew-isms to get a glimpse of my face, which, with my glasses on usually looks something like this:
I hate to say it (and I'm including myself in this horrible stereotype here, even though I am a goy), but if you've got a big nose...maybe a little bump on the bridge....a hook or a bend...people automatically assume you're of Jewish decent.
I have proof:
In my doc, I asked about 10 strangers to tell me why they thought I was Jewish. About half of them pointed to my nose, regardless of common courtesy. I didn't ask them to judge based on my appearance....and none of them stopped to ask if I even was Jewish to begin with, or why I was asking them a question that couldn't possibly be answered based on a purely superficial conjecture.
I don't get it; no other ethnicity or religious group seems to be so publicly inquisitive. It's not like someone would come up to you and ask, "Hey, you Hispanic? You're not by chance a Muslim, are you? Let me ask you something, are you black?"
And what do you say to a Jew who asks essentially asks, "Are you just like me"?
"No, but I could be!"
"Yeah...funny thing about that.." Then run.
Punch them in the yarmulke.
"I actually believe in Jesus....er, at least, I used to...I mean....shit."
From now on, I'm just gonna point to the shnoz.