Bintel Blog

London Synagogue Auctions Off Celebrity Underwear

By Eleanor Goldberg

  • Print
  • Share Share

With Passover just around the corner, goodwill is aplenty: Some charities are delivering seder meals, and others are arranging for holiday invites. The New North London Synagogue however, is taking a different approach. They are auctioning off autographed celebrity underwear on Ebay.

Simon Hattenstone, a writer for the Guardian, decided to request celebrity underwear as a way to raise awareness for needy individuals who seek refuge in the Masorti synagogue. “Look, I’m not a seedy old hack,” Hattenstone wrote in his column. “I help run a drop-in centre for destitute asylum seekers. These people have no money for the basics in life. One of the things they most lack is underwear, so we’re drawing attention to it with an auction of celebrity underwear.”

While he relates that procuring the unmentionables from the stars was somewhat difficult, matching the pair to the name isn’t. Actress Emma Thompson’s black stomach-flattening Spanx came with the note that reads, “These are the knicker equivalent of Fort Knox”. Songwriter and poet John Hegley’s briefs feature a poem about ants and pants. The singer Fergie of the Black Eyed Peas sent in gold, metallic boy shorts. And writer Nick Hornby and his young son adorned a pair of boxers with stickers and a feather.

Undergarments apparently from actress Helen Mirren, actor Daniel Day-Lewis, and illustrator Aline Crumb are also on the block.

With the description of each lot comes a note about the New North London Synagogue’s Destitute Asylum Seeker Drop In: “Destitute asylum seekers live here in fear, terrified of being forcibly returned home. They are not allowed to work and don’t even have the money to buy underwear which is basic to human dignity. Our celebrities will both raise funds for them and draw attention to their plight.”

Bidders can procure their very own gently used memento until March 31.

Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: Underwear, North London Synagogue, Auction

The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Find us on Facebook!
  • "She said that Ruven Barkan, a Conservative rabbi, came into her classroom, closed the door and turned out the lights. He asked the class of fourth graders to lie on the floor and relax their bodies. Then, he asked them to pray for abused children." Read Paul Berger's compelling story about a #Savannah community in turmoil:
  • “Everything around me turns orange, then a second of silence, then a bomb goes off!" First installment of Walid Abuzaid’s account of the war in #Gaza:
  • Is boredom un-Jewish?
  • Let's face it: there's really only one Katz's Delicatessen.
  • "Dear Diaspora Jews, I’m sorry to break it to you, but you can’t have it both ways. You can’t insist that every Jew is intrinsically part of the Israeli state and that Jews are also intrinsically separate from, and therefore not responsible for, the actions of the Israeli state." Do you agree?
  • Are Michelangelo's paintings anti-Semitic? Meet the Jews of the Sistine Chapel:
  • What does the Israel-Hamas war look like through Haredi eyes?
  • Was Israel really shocked to find there are networks of tunnels under Gaza?
  • “Going to Berlin, I had a sense of something waiting there for me. I was searching for something and felt I could unlock it by walking the streets where my grandfather walked and where my father grew up.”
  • How can 3 contradictory theories of Yiddish co-exist? Share this with Yiddish lovers!
  • "We must answer truthfully: Has a drop of all this bloodshed really helped bring us to a better place?”
  • "There are two roads. We have repeatedly taken the one more traveled, and that has made all the difference." Dahlia Scheindlin looks at the roots of Israel's conflict with Gaza.
  • Shalom, Cooperstown! Cooperstown Jewish mayor Jeff Katz and Jeff Idelson, director of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, work together to oversee induction weekend.
  • A boost for morale, if not morals.
  • Mixed marriages in Israel are tough in times of peace. So, how do you maintain a family bubble in the midst of war?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?

We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.