Hooking Up for the High Holy Days

Pssst! Synagogue Services Are Hottest Singles Scene Around

I’ve Got the Apples, Baby: The High Holy Days are a great time to try out new pick-up lines. Who knows, you might get lucky.
Courtesy of Manhattan Jewish Experience
I’ve Got the Apples, Baby: The High Holy Days are a great time to try out new pick-up lines. Who knows, you might get lucky.

By Lenore Skenazy

Published September 13, 2012, issue of September 21, 2012.
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‘I’ve got the apples. Now all I need is you, honey.”

Okay, so maybe no one’s using that line. But come the High Holidays there’s more than one reason tickets to synagogue cost so much. It’s the hottest singles scene in town.

“When I was younger, my mom and I used to sit in the back and rate everybody’s outfit,” says Californian Kerri Zane, explaining her High Holidays m.o. “But now we’re just rating the men.”

“We” in this case includes a female friend who is making the 30-mile trip from Los Angeles to Long Beach in order to meet the single guys Zane is going to point out to her. This is a mitzvah Zane — author of the upcoming “It Takes All 5: A Single Mom’s Guide to Finding the Real One” (Morgan James) — has done for other L.A. friends over the years. “They kind of like the fresh meat down here.”

Yes, fresh, uh, faces are a big part of the holidays’ appeal. You’ve got your college kids coming home to be with their folks. You’ve got the young professionals (and not-so-professionals, as long as they’re happy!) doing the same. You’ve got your divorcees venturing into the fold. Everyone’s dressed up. And everyone’s introducing everyone to everyone else because there’s always a connection: “You remember Myrna’s son who went to Vassar with Zoe from Camp Kinder Ring? This is his cousin!”

“Not only do you reconnect, but it’s an opportunity to see their family dynamic,” notes Long Island “love coach” Robin Gorman Newman, author of “How to Marry a Mensch” (Fair Winds Press, 2006). “Do they seem friendly with their parents? You always kind of wonder how a guy is with his mom.”

For years, Chicagoan Gigi Cohen had her eye on a young man whose family sat a few rows ahead of hers on the holidays. “He’s tall so I could see him with his dad, who was a trustee of the synagogue and would carry the Torah for Kol Nidre, and he’d come back and they’d all hug each other and they looked like such a nice family.”

During the rest of the year she’d run into the guy at Jewish singles events. And then one Rosh Hashanah, he was in his usual seat… with a baby on his shoulder. “And I was like, ‘Ah, another one I missed,’” Cohen recalls.


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