Good morning, friends and neighbors!
We get bombarded by stereotypes these days, and whether we buy into them or not is our own call. Age groups, races, political affiliations, and so on.
The trouble with stereotypes is that, to some degree, they all have a seed of truth.
“Jews become doctors/accountants/lawyers”, for example, because studying, analysis, debate, and intellectualism are a big part of Jewish life and faith.
Obviously, stereotypes are by definition generalizations, which are always foolish. I don’t think anyone in their right mind would want me to represent them in court, or balance their books.
It’s an interesting thing, though, to be conscious of a stereotype of one’s own group and actively seek to embody it. The stereotypes can act as identifiers for the group- a way for the members to set themselves apart from others, and even revel in it.
Yes, I love lox and cream cheese bagels and matzo ball soup- #jewishastevye.
When joining a new group, though, those very actions can be interpreted negatively as being misinformed or “being a try-hard.”
Here’s a story from the kitchen of someone I know. It’s about how actively pursuing the stereotypes you think will ingratiate can actually alienate, the (hopefully) changing face of kitchen life, and how old souls spend their evenings.