My ordinary life

I know the language of your laugh, tripping over circumstance I know the story of your walk, I taste the sugar in the salt I taste to savour your little ways, the colours that you choose to paint your day

Monday, November 13, 2006

Bang Bang Oy Veh

When I googled "Jewish and Gay" several months ago, I expected to see something depressing about Stephen Fry or websites about who is running Hollywood. It was with some surprise that up popped the JGLG website in all its multi-colour glory and I was just in time to express interest in the curiously-named Jewish Gay and Lesbian firework display. Ooooh, I thought as images popped into my head of little rockets wearing kippot racing through the sky with the larger ones going "Oy, look how far my son has gone, I'm over the moon". "Royston, you think your boy is doing well, look at my spinning Catherine, she now wears a sheitel". "You must be thrilled, Sacha".Apprehension aside, I persuaded my sparky friend Alison to cancel her typical Saturday night, which we won't go into here, and attend the packed soiree chez Julian in the brisk West Finchley air.

Greeted by the effervescent president Peggy, who will have edited this and inserted her own adjective, the dutiful fellow-Manc Eric on the door and our hospitable host and pyromaniac, Julian, we were invited to digest so much food, wine and chicken soup for the soul that if there was an early Father Chanukah, he'd have never fitted into his 32 inch pants. Apparently every Jew is 32 inches. I am not sure where we count from. But it's true.

We all ooohed and ahhhed as Julian lit the touchpaper to the fireworks, handed out sparklers and ordered guests off his well-manicured lawn. The scene was a Jewish Battle of the Somme with few drink-related casualties, the most visible to me was the ever-youthful Sheldon spinning Alison around, near the now-anxious and charming Leanne. Look out for them on Strictly Come Dancing. More important than the fireworks was the friendly spirit, which, in my experience of the Jewish scene around the Manchester bars, transcended age, background, experience and the almost unbridgeable North-South divide. Even Stephen Fry might have found something to smile about here.


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