So, let’s admit it: it’s fun to be a member of the tribe.
Some people, like Dr. Tim Whatley (a.k.a the “anti-dentite” dentist from “Seinfeld”) convert to get in on the privileged sphere of the Jew joke. Others just like saying “shlep,” and “shvitz.” Still others just grew up in New York City.
But sometimes, this embracing of “chosen” culture just gets a little confusing. Which brings us to Harry Styles.
There has been much speculation about the One Direction heartthrob’s Jewish connection. Is he? Isn’t he? Well, let’s examine the evidence.
Exhibit A: He rocked a star of David at the Teen Choice Awards on Sunday (see above).
Exhibit B: His tweets are pretty Jewish. Submitted for your approval:
Looking forward to seder night. Always get a bit nervous when I have to sing ma’nish ta’na. But do love a shmorreh matzah. Happy pesach x ampmdash; Harry Styles (@Harry_Styles) March 25, 2013
Happy purim everybody! Enjoy your seudah today and boo loudly at hamann during the megillah!! .x ampmdash; Harry Styles (@Harry_Styles) February 24, 2013
Exhibit C: He likes kosher chinese. Back in January, kosher restaurant Met Su Yan in London was mobbed with fans after someone saw Styles eating inside.
Exhibit D: Styles sports a tattoo in Hebrew on his left shoulder, which spells out his sister’s name (Gemma).
According to the Jewish Chronicle, which recently ran a profile of the teen dreamboat, Styles grew up in Holmes Chapel, Cheshire, near the pretty prominent Jewish community of Hale, but has never been spotted attending the neighboring congregation.
Maybe he just picked up the lingo while hanging out with Gabriel Turner, director of independent film company Fulwell 73, who worked on the upcoming movie about the band, “One Direction: This is US” which will be released on August 30. According to the JC profile, Turner and co-founder Ben Winston, both Jews, are thought to be behind Styles’ masterful use of Yiddish.
In any case, the jury is still out on this one — unless a nice Jewish girl steps up to the plate.
Anne Cohen was the Forward’s deputy digital media editor. When she’s not looking for the secret Jewish history of Voodoo in New Orleans, or making lists about Ruth Bader Ginsburg , she writes for The Assimilator. She graduated from the Columbia Graduate School of Journalism with an M.S. magazine concentration in 2012.