House-Hunting in Florida Suburbia Turns Into Great Mezuzah Trek

How Can You Tell if People Next Door Are Jewish?

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By Nancy Kalikow Maxwell

Published May 26, 2013, issue of May 31, 2013.
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Any housing development with two competing theatrical performances must be home to a lot of Jews. Like the old joke about the deserted island with two Jews and three synagogues, here we had one community with two theater groups. The song from the “Spamalot” musical — “You Won’t Succeed on Broadway if You Don’t Have Any Jews” — is only half the story: If you do have any Jews, there will be “artistic differences.”

Satisfied with my findings, I headed toward the door. On my way out I grabbed a copy of the community newsletter from the (not-knotty-pine) coffee table. Leafing through it, I found all the proof I needed. The Democratic club would be meeting, but there was no mention of a Republican gathering.

The mah-jongg group was looking for two new members; see Pearl. The Hadassah chapter was planning a casino trip and the local chapter of the Jewish service organization ORT would host a luncheon on Monday (decide by Thursday: chicken, tuna or egg salad?).

I knew I had found a haimish place for myself. When I saw my real estate agent I thanked him for the suggestion. “That’s a good choice for you,” he told me. “I have lots of friends and relatives there.” As I later found out, my real estate agent was Jewish. I could have just asked him.

Nancy Kalikow Maxwell is a retired librarian and freelance grant writer whose mezuza hangs on a doorpost in Plantation, Fla. Reach her at kaliwell@kaliwellinc.com


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