First there was a Man. Then a Woman. Then in quick succession, two cats, a confused dog beast, and two kids. I stay at home with them. I'm the Man

Friday, March 16, 2012

The Art of Negotiation or "Hey, I'm Jewish too."

It happened at work.

He came to the fresh bread area, along with his sidekick. We recognized each other immediately. He was older than me. Grey and mostly bald. He nodded at the sale bread (a kind of mild sourdough boule. Price: $2.00) and asked, "How is it?"

"It's good." I replied.

Then he started to make a series of slight head nods, shrugs, eyebrow raises, and hand movements which among my tribe translates roughly as, " So, whadderwe gonna do here, huh? Can we do something here? Hm, huh, whaddya think? What can you do for me."

I responded in kind. My delicate dance of body english replying, "I don't know? We'll see. Let's talk."

His sidekick chuckled.

He motioned with the brown bagged loaf of bread he was already holding in his left hand. It was a fresh loaf of olive bread. Good choice. "I love this bread," he said,  "but it costs six bucks."

I indicated the sale breads and said, "Well, you can buy this one, get a jar of olives for 3 bucks, jam the olives into the loaf of bread (I making short, quick jabbing motions with my thumb as I talk, so as to indicate how one should jam olives) and save yourself a dollar."

"I'll take it," he replied.

And that's how we do it in the old country.

Qf course, it wasn't about the price or my moronic idea. It was about the love of the chase. The thrill of the sarcasm blowing through your hair and the attitude pounding through your veins. That's what people misunderstand about the Jews.  We're not cheap, we just like to argue.

7 comments:

  1. I'm crying because I'm laughing so hard. I can see it all so clearly. I may not be Jewish, but I'm also from the old country and I come from a long line of negotiators. This is perfection. (Except for that Q. Did you perchance begin celebrating that pagan saint early?)

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  2. Jews love to argue? Why so? Are you saying jews are normally hot-blooded people?

    garden sheds

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  3. What old country would that be? Cheapskateia?

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  4. Best post I've read all week! You're killing me HM!

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  5. And TAG you're it. Visit my blog for the penalty: http://bit.ly/H3slzb

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  6. beautifully written. love the blog.

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