Whether you are a Napa Valley-native or tend to fall on the Charles Shaw side of things, the Four Cups of Wine demanded by Seder can be daunting. Interspersed unevenly through the night, sickly sweet, broken up by appetizers that are basically clumps of weeds dipped in a saline rinse — the Four Cups can be a blessing and a curse. The Talmud states, “Our Rabbis instituted four cups as symbolizing freedom.” (109b.) Basically — pour one out for the homies.
The Talmud says a “cup” can be the size of an olive, but unless they mean an olive soaked in vodka, this won’t help you get through Magid. To assist you in staying on track to fulfill the mitzvah (that third cup sneaks up on you!) and not abandoning one of our people’s cooler traditions, we present to you The Forward’s Passover Drinking Game™.
Take a sip of wine or grape juice any time…
-Someone says ‘kitniyot’
-Anyone expresses a sentiment along the lines of, “What a year!” or, “These are crazy times!”
-Someone starts their comment by saying, “I’m no expert, but…” or “Just to play to play devil’s advocate…” (drain your glass if they begin with an apology)
-You find yourself trying to calculate the hours until dinner
-Waterfall until the youngest person stops stalling and agrees to recite the Four Questions
-Any time you find bits of Matzah and horseradish trapped in your Haggadah from last year
-For every non-traditional addition to the Seder plate. Popular choices include: orange, beet, olives, artichokes, tomatoes, and bananas.
-Someone tries to defend the unflattering qualities of one of the four sons. Drain your glass if they say something like “Maybe the Wicked one is truly wisest!” or “Aren’t all of us all of the sons?”
-An older relative tries to set you up with the other Seder guest who is closest to your age
-The Haggadah provides abstract artwork that confuses you
-Anyone uses Hamilton or Harry Potter to connect with the millennials at the table
-Someone says something to the effect of, “But what are the MODERN plagues?!?” (take a shot of Manischewitz if they say that modern technology “truly enslaves us.”)
-You hear the word “society,” “historically,” or “Holocaust”
-You feel a hopeless sense of disconnect with the clearly insane members of other generations and realize that strife is inevitable, joy is fleeting and suffering your lifelong companion, and that when the Israelites were freed from Egypt they employed slaves for literally hundreds of years, so this holiday may well be a farce.
-You remember: Game of Thrones is coming back soon!
-You realize your hosts are Vegetarian
Bonus Passover Joke!
Adir who yivnei beito v’karov!