Marriage Brokers

"Matchmaker, Matchmaker, make me a match!"

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What a Deal!

The matchmaker was very anxious to conclude a chasseneh [marriage]between the son of his longtime friend and his own niece. It wasn't just the fee involved, either. The old broker was certain they would make a happy and loving couple. But the young man would have none of the prospective bride, a recent widow.

"You call this a good match?" he rebuked the shadkhan. "That woman is the mother of four children!"

"All right, so she's the mother of four. By you this is bad? Take the word of an experienced man--it's much better so!"

"What do you mean, better?"

"My boy, did you ever stop to think that if you married a maiden and decided to have four children, what kind of tsorres [troubles]you'd go through?"

"I don't think that's so much trouble."

"Ha! The experienced man is talking! You never had to go through four pregnancies! And you live two flights up in the apartment house so you have to carry your wife up the stairs when you bring her back from the hospital. So what happens? I'll tell you exactly what happens--you sprain your back and now you're both convalescing. And if your wife doesn't recuperate from the childbirth, what do you do? You send her to the Catskills for a rest, that's what!

"Here you are, living in the city and she's in the country. And who'll look after the kinder [children]while you are working or maybe laid up in a sick­bed, and she's away? Will you do all the cooking and cleaning and washing of diapers? You call that a kind of life?

"On the other hand, I'm offering you a fine-looking widow with four ready-made children: no fuss, no bother, no expense--custom-tailored, just for you. My boy, anybody who doesn't grab this proposition is out of his mind!"

A Speech Impediment

A shadkhan was declaiming on the attractions of a hopeful bride, but the young man remained unimpressed.

"You're making a mistake by refusing her," said the marriage broker. "She has a speech impediment."

"Speech impediment!" echoed the man. "What kind of an inducement do you call that?"

The shadkhan grinned knowingly and explained, "She can't say 'no'!"

The Spice of Life

There seemed to be no question that the matchmaker had arranged a marriage, but at the last minute the fiancé changed his mind.

"What's wrong with the girl that you should back out like this?" demanded the shadkhan. "She's a regular angel and pretty like a doll."

"It hasn't anything to do with that at all," the young man said thoughtfully. "I just realized that I simply don't believe in marriage."

"What kind of nonsense is that from a nice Jewish boy," the broker retorted. "A man without a wife is like a pastrami sandwich without a pickle; the spice and tang of life is missing. But with a mate at your side, life means something!"

"What, for instance?"

"Just think of it--you awaken in the morning and your loving wife brings you coffee in bed. She draws the water for your bath--even washes your back. At night, when you return home from work, do you eat alone like some poor bachelor? Of course not! Together you sit down at the same table and enjoy her delicious home cooking."

"Well, I have to admit, that part isn't so bad."

"None of it is bad, my boy! On the Sabbath you come home and the place is spotless. The furniture has all been dusted, a nice clean cloth is on the table, and there's the shining new silverware you got for a wedding present. Then she lights the candles like a good daughter of Israel and together you eat her fresh-made chicken soup--it melts in your mouth."

"The more I hear the better I like it."

"That's not all, my young friend. Just think, you are at the dinner table and your bride tells you of the little happenings of the day in her own innocent, sweet manner. You listen and smile lovingly as she tells you one little story after another. And so she goes on talking while you sit there and listen. And she talks--and she talks--and talks--and talks-- and talks! Oy vay, can a wife talk! It drives a man crazy!"

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