Mama Deb (mamadeb) wrote,
Mama Deb

I was at an upsherinish today. That's a yiddish term meaning "haircut". In Chassidishe and Spherdardi households (and, increasingly, in rightwing Ashkenaz as well), little boys do not get their hair cut until they are three. It's a big deal - they get their first pairs of tzitzit - little tabards with long fringe tied to the corners (decorated appropriately for 3yo's - alphabet blocks, teddy bears, things like that. Adult tzitzit are usually plain white or have blue or black stripes.), they may get their first yarmulkes and they get carried to a yeshiva where they taste honey smeared over letters of the Alephbet so they should know learning is sweet. And their long curls get cut off, except for in front of their ears for side lock.

And there may be a party of sorts where people come and give a present and cut off a lock of the boy's hair. They put the boy on a high chair or stool and people line up and take a snip. It's a good luck thing. And, yes, they take breaks and allow for general being three-ness.

This time. :) It was somewhat more chaotic. Every so often, they'd corner Shmeryahu, who'd be playing with his new toys or his older siblings or his cousins, and put him on the stool in the kitchen and they'd cut some hair, and then he'd get off the stool and go play again. Twenty minutes later...:) I think he had two or three snips at a time. The plan was to give him a full haircut all at once, but I didn't see it. They had a large fluffy cat, named "Fluffy". In about ninety minutes, I could feel things starting to close up, so I left, leaving my husband behind.

He beat me home - he got a ride from another couple. :)

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