Weekly Quiz

Spelling Bee

Nihar Janga and Jairam Hathwar became co-champions of the 2016 Scripps National Spelling Bee last week by correctly spelling the words “gesellschaft” and “Feldenkrais,” respectively. In 2013, Arvind Mahankali spelled the winning word, “knaidel,” which led to much controversy in the Jewish and Yiddish-speaking world as to whether that was the correct spelling. What sentence did the judge read when Arvind asked to hear the word “knaidel” in a sentence?

National Spelling Bee by Stacey Huggins is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

AHannah and Esther argued every year at Passover as to whether the knaidel should be a floater or a sinker.

BMax hoped to find at least one more knaidel in his soup bowl but all he discovered was his missing lower denture.

C. Grandma’s soup was delicious, but the knaidel was so hard that her grandson Davey thought he was biting a bagel.

D. Offering to help her mother serve the matzah ball soup at their seder, little Melissa said, “Mommy, I’ll be glad to ladle the knaidel.”

E. The famous motorcycle daredevil’s most amazing feat was riding his bike with his girlfriend in his lap, while kissing her, as they jumped over the Israeli Parliament building while studying Jewish texts, eating matzah ball soup, and spinning a top, in what was billed as the “Evel Knievel Kabbalah Knaidel and Dreidel Knesset Canoodle.”

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Mt. Everest

Very few climbers have reached the summit of Mt. Everest in the last two years, due to deadly avalanches and a huge earthquake. The 2016 season has just begun, with 9 Sherpas reaching the summit on May 11; however, four climbers have already died this month, with numerous others taking ill near the summit. In 2012, what made the Mt. Everest ascent by Israeli Nadav Ben Yehuda unusual?

Mt. Everest by Kirsten is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.

ABen Yehuda, who was 24 at the time, would have been the youngest Israeli ever to reach the top of Mt. Everest. However, he abandoned his effort just 300 meters from the summit because he chose to assist a Turkish climber who was suffering from serious frostbite. Ben Yehuda carried the stricken climber down the mountain to the base camp, where they were then helicoptered to safety.

BBen Yehuda was making final preparations for his ascent to the top of the mountain when he received an e-mail announcing that his military reserve unit was being called to active duty. He was only 300 meters from the top, but because of his dedication to the Israeli Defense Forces, he immediately turned around in order to be able to report for duty on time.

CBen Yehuda had emigrated to Israel from the former Soviet Union, where he had not had a religious upbringing or celebrated a bar mitzvah. As he approached the summit of Mt. Everest with Israeli friends, they recognized the unique possibility for this moment. Transforming the meaning of Aliyah, or the going up to bless the Torah, one of his friends chanted, “Ya’amod, Nadav ben Mordechai, la’aliyah Ha-Everestit,” as Ben Yehuda went up to the summit of Mt. Everest. His friends then joined him while singing “Siman Tov u’Mazel Tov” as they shared some Manischewitz and rugelach.

DBen Yehuda was climbing in late August. An Orthodox Jew, he found himself in a dilemma as his climb took much longer than anticipated. By the time he reached the summit, Rosh Hashanah was only a few days away. He radioed to other groups that were climbing at that time, and managed to locate nine other Jewish climbers in the area. The resulting Rosh Hashanah services at the North Base Camp set the record for the highest altitude minyan ever held, at over 17,000 feet.

EBen Yehuda carried two stone tablets with him on his climb, and when he reached the summit of Mt. Everest, he carved the 10 Commandments into the stone. He carried the tablets back down the mountain, and they are now on permanent exhibit at the Bible Lands Museum in Jerusalem.

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Brazil

Israel’s honorary consul in Rio de Janeiro criticized Brazil’s embattled president, Dilma Roussef, for her comparison of the effort to impeach her to the Nazis’ persecution of Jews. Yet, two years ago, the criticism went in the opposite direction when what was said?

Dilma by Alex Vieira is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

AThe president of the Brazilian Israelite Confederation apologized to President Roussef for remarks made by Yigal Palmor, a spokesman for the Israeli foreign ministry. Brazil had recalled their ambassador to Israel in protest of Israeli attacks on Gaza, prompting Palmor to say that “Brazil is a friend, but we think its position is not balanced. This is an unfortunate reminder of the fact that Brazil, an economic and cultural giant, has offered nothing to the world since The Girl From Ipanema.”

BThe president of the Brazilian Israelite Confederation apologized to President Roussef for remarks made by Yigal Palmor, a spokesman for the Israeli foreign ministry. Brazil had recalled their ambassador to Israel in protest of Israeli attacks on Gaza, prompting Palmor to say that “Brazil is a friend, but we think its position is not balanced. This is an unfortunate demonstration of why Brazil, an economic and cultural giant, remains a third world nation.”

CThe president of the Brazilian Israelite Confederation apologized to President Roussef for remarks made by Yigal Palmor, a spokesman for the Israeli foreign ministry. Brazil had recalled their ambassador to Israel in protest of Israeli attacks on Gaza, prompting Palmor to say that “Brazil is a friend, but we think its position is not balanced. I can think of a brazillian reasons why their diplomatic efforts are not productive.”

DThe president of the Brazilian Israelite Confederation apologized to President Roussef for remarks made by Yigal Palmor, a spokesman for the Israeli foreign ministry. Brazil had recalled their ambassador to Israel in protest of Israeli attacks on Gaza, prompting Palmor to say that “Brazil is a friend, but we think its position is not balanced. This is an unfortunate demonstration of why Brazil, an economic and cultural giant, remains a diplomatic dwarf.”

EThe president of the Brazilian Israelite Confederation apologized to President Roussef for remarks made by Yigal Palmor, a spokesman for the Israeli foreign ministry. Brazil had recalled their ambassador to Israel in protest of Israeli attacks on Gaza, prompting Palmor to say that “Brazil is a friend, but we think its position is not balanced. As I wax philosophic about the diplomatic decision by the Brazilians, I am hurt, as if they just ripped the hair from my body.”

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Israeli Independence Day

Yom Ha’atzmaut, Israeli Independence Day, is celebrated this Thursday, May 12. How is one company marking this event?

Flag-of-Israel-2015-04-08 by Zachi Evenor is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

AMars Food is selling bags of M&M’s in blue and white colors. The letter M on each candy has been replaced with the number 68.

B. Utz Quality Foods issued an Independence Day bag of chips labeled “Yom Ha’atzma-UTZ Potato Chips.”

CBank Leumi has issued a commemorative gold coin worth 100 Israeli Shekels, featuring David ben Gurion on the front and a picture of the Declaration of Independence on the back.

D. Reebok has released a sneaker that is blue and white and has the words “Israel 68” engraved on the heel.

E. Starbucks is offering a special product for the month of Iyar. The product is called Cinnamon Chai V’Kayam Crème Frappuccino.

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Trump Products

Donald Trump’s name was associated with a problem that attracted the attention of the Israeli police last month. What happened?

Trump’s Birdnest by Mark Rain is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

AThousands of pounds of Trump Steaks were seized because they were stamped as kosher but they did not actually have kosher certification.

BA local bottled water distributor in Haifa was arrested for filling bottles with tap water and labeling them as Trump Natural Spring Water.

C. Hundreds of bottles of Trump Vodka were seized because they bore phony “Kosher for Passover” stickers.

DA printer in Tel Aviv was raided for printing fake Trump University diplomas and selling them on the black market to young people needing to prove they were college graduates in order to get government civil service jobs.

EA wig manufacturer in Mea Shearim was arrested for trademark infringement for selling orange wigs to religious women which were marketed as Trump Sheitels. He used the advertising slogan “Build a modesty wall around your head with a Trump Sheitel. Made in China and paid for by Mexico.”

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