‘Tis the Daylight Savings Time of year of spring breaks, and yes, for the Jewish communities -the Purim Carnival. Purim is the annual reading of the book of Esther, commonly known as the Megillah. During this time, Jews are “commanded” to eat, drink and be merry, which can include evening festivities and costume parades.**
For those who are not part of the “tribe” or who have never attended a Purim carnival — think grade school fair or a Halloween-type event that includes jumpy-houses and carnival games like ring-toss, face-painting, and, the parent’s nightmare, the win-a-Goldfish booth.
Below is an interview I was lucky to secure with “Goldie,” a fish in line to be culled from the tank, before his untimely demise.* As you hear in his tone, it’s not all fun and games at the carnival.
PA: You appear frazzled.
Goldie: It’s exhausting fighting for room. I’ve carved a corner against the glass for a breather while we talk.
PA: I notice the water pulsates from the DJ music. Are you feeling it?
Goldie: What? Oh, I’m sorry, the BOOM reverberates and it takes me a sec to collect my senses. You were saying?
PA: The music. It’s loud. Is it painful?
Goldie: If being hit continuously by a bus is painful, then yes, it’s painful.
PA: Are you looking forward to being adopted?
Goldie: A quiet sun-drenched bowl might be an upgrade.
PA: You sound skeptical.
Goldie: I’d be lonely, but I’d survive.
PA: The children are so thrilled when they win. Aren’t you optimistic that you’ll be cherished and well-fed?
Goldie: If it weren’t for the grimace on the parents faces when the kid sinks the ping-pong basket, I’d be less inclined to think that my next home was going to be the toilet.
PA: A fish hit the ground when he was being picked from the net and moved to a plastic bag. Was he a friend?
Goldie: I was separated from my school eons ago. We all here just met.
PA: Well, I’m sorry anyway.
Goldie: What can I say, he’s in a better place.
PA: I appreciate your taking the time out of this crazy day, I wish you an easy transfer.
* Sadly, Goldie passed while being swung violently in his bag, from game to game for the next hour before even leaving the parking lot.
**For those interested in a more detailed description of Purim, Google Judaism 101!
Pam Alster, former stand-up comedienne, Lifetime TV writer & suburban mom brings a decade of living on the dark side to light in her forthcoming debut novel Robin’s Blue. www.pamalster.com