2014…the year I went kosher.
I confess the few weeks leading up to January 1st 2014, I consumed massive quantities of shrimp & crispy bacon (yes…I was a vegetarian with a bacon “problem”) in preparation of going cold turkey January 1st . I didn’t make New Year resolutions, I made declarations…and I believe I declared my kosher intent to every bathroom attendant, waiter, friend, family member in the continental United States that would listen.
A week and a half into my new kosher lifestyle, I spent Sunday morning having brunch at a fabulous Cajun restaurant in my neighborhood. Immediately I was starkly aware that I had eliminated 94.7% of the menu from my diet… so I ordered pancakes and grits.
My guess is that many more observant Jews will point out that if I’m taking kashrut seriously than I shouldn’t have stepped inside a non kosher restaurant …but I know that ruling all other restaurants out would ostracize myself from my family, friends, NYC… I simply don’t believe my Jewishness is predicated on how many of the nitty gritty rules I follow. It is about so much more than that.
There are also some fringe benefits of keeping kosher liiiiiiike…
1. purchasing a new set of dishes
2. shorter food table lines at work events.
Downside: I really love shellfish.
Upside: It’s a mitzvah.