19 September 2011
Mincha and the Apple
So begins Tahanun, the weekday prayer of supplication and forgiveness we recite in the morning and afternoon, reminding ourselves that there is a always an opportunity for self-examination, for appraisal and the seeking of forgiveness for how we may offend or sin against others, ourselves, and God.
Our prayers today ended quietly, thoughtfully transitioning from Tahanun to Aleynu with no Kaddish since we lacked a Minyan.
If I were to say a controversy erupted I'd be exaggerating but nonetheless I must report that a dispute, albeit minor, arose over the beneficent provenance of the Massachusetts Apple v. the Hudson Valley Apple and so soon after these peaceful pre-vespers, the few of us lingering in the small synagogue were locked into a wordless, gestureless battle of regional pride over this fruity globule--and curses! no one was even mentioning Wisconsin!
Who knew Mincha could be so stressful! Come on, God, I fumed internally. You used to settle disputes among Sages--wherefore art thou?
But only an abyss, a valley, a core of silence. From whence the Divine Apple? The Land of Kennedy, Cuomo or La Follette? I didn't know what to do. So I walked down to the Korean deli and bought a Fuji Apple--it was the most Zen thing I could think of at that point.
Religion--ha! We syncretists, all!