I've done a lot this year to prepare for Pesach (Passover). I've helped Temple Sinai raise money by joining in two March Madness events (soon to be three). I've sampled Berkeley Rep plays (ugh!) while tasting three types of brisket at the other event (terrific!).
I've also cleaned my house of chametz, the leavened bread-type products that one must get rid of during Pesach. You know, flour, bread crumbs, flour. I haven't gotten rid of the bread yet. I've been eating sandwiches knowing that I can no longer eat sandwiches for eight days. I have also taken the opportunity to clean out cabinets. This is the once-a-year time when one should throw away old spices and salad dressings. I think it's a good plan.
I am all set up for two seders this year. Last year I was learning. But this year...well, I'm still learning. But some things are now familiar to me, and I will spend this weekend studying up a bit on what goes into a seder (thanks to Dawn's quick study email on that), and what historically goes into this celebration after all.
I'm all set. Except for one thing.
At the Brisket-a-thon last Monday night, the very pleasant lesbian couple told me that they were hosting a seder next Monday night. One of them happened to mention this little gem: "Yeah, and it's opening night for the A's. I guess I'll have to tivo it."
My God. It's Opening Night. I'll be at a seder. I can't watch Opening Night.
If she had known anything at all about me, this whole situation would be playing on my face and she'd know where my mind was going. At first I wondered if that was the night I had tickets for. But no, the A's are out of town, in Seattle, on opening night. I have tickets for when they come back to town on the following Monday. Still, I can't watch Opening Night. But, thankfully, she didn't know me at all, just two lesbians talking about baseball, or rather, our inability to see baseball.
Suddenly I felt like Jimmy Fallon in Fever Pitch. Thinking just a little too much about the local team.
As I hear the story of the escape from Egypt, and the Israelites quickly preparing bread without leavening agents so that they can be on the move, I will try to remember my own Egypts. And drink Manischevitz with friends and enjoy their company. And when I get home, I'll watch the first day of a long season of baseball.
Perspective. Isn't that what both of these events are all about?