Yiddish proverbs are notoriously witty—and remarkably prescient. Who could have predicted a pandemic? Apparently, our ancestors.
“Show a pig a finger, and he’ll want the whole hand.”
Show a pig an Amazon window, and they will order things rarely consumed under normal circumstances: Cool Ranch Doritos, frozen mac-and-cheese, 18 boxes of Duncan Hines fudge brownie mix.
“A person can forget everything but eating.”
On that note: Who else has gained 10 pounds since this started?
“The sun shines the same on the rich and poor.”
We’re all trapped at home. True enough, some are trapped in mansions with state-of-the-art exercise equipment and infinity pools, but we’re all experiencing a lack of freedom that was once so easy to take for granted. Face masks and lack of Starbucks: the great equalizer.
“When you put a bird in a cage, you don’t know if it’s laughing or crying.”
Crying! Definitely sobbing loudly.
“If you stay at home, you won’t wear out your boots.”
When’s the last time you wore actual shoes?
“The world is huge, and there’s nowhere to turn.”
This hits painfully close to home. And by home, I mean the place I haven’t left in six weeks.
“Love your neighbor, even if he plays the trombone.”
Or hires a leaf blower to come at 7:30 a.m. Or has taken up the accordion, with minimal success. Or has five yowling children under age 4 and a trampoline.
“To assume is to be deceived.”
As in, assuming my kids will go back to class sometime before June, despite the vaguely optimistic missives from school. I’m resigning myself to September.
“Out of desperation, one finds.”
Have you fashioned meals out of hitherto ignored foods? Resurrected puzzles with 10 missing pieces? Resorted to wearing pajama pants from 2003 because they’re the only thing that fits?
“With a child in the house, all corners all full.”
…full of dismembered Ninja Turtles, lone Legos and wrinkled Fritos wrappers.
“Man plans, and God laughs.”
This requires no translation.