Former Forward staffer Max Gross is not only my friend. He is also my hero.
When he wasn’t busy writing some of the strangest stories ever published in a Jewish newspaper, Max was kind enough to give Forward readers a glimpse into his exciting personal life. As his not-so-alter ego “the Hapless Jewish Writer,” Max would relate his adventures learning how to cook, playing poker (and even beating the occasional poker ace) and miraculously winning horse races — often in the interest of impressing the fairer sex. Few topics were too private to share. He even wrote about his experiences going to a matchmaker.
Now Max has brought his shtick to his new employer, the New York Post. And for his latest escapade, Max is emulating fellow Jewfro’d schlub “Knocked Up” star Seth Rogen. Max writes:
No one in the world wants you to see the new comedy “Knocked Up” more than I do.
For years I’ve been a schlubby ne’er-do-well sporting an unwieldy Jewfro. I spent nearly three decades fighting off double-chins and man-boobs. My style of dress is an embarrassment to anybody except a stoned college student. But every doofus has his day, and when I saw the smash comedy last week, for a gleaming, shining moment I thought:
Because of Seth Rogen, I’m so getting laid.
The Post devoted almost two full pages (complete with pictures) to Max’s account of his efforts to work his Rogen-esque charms on some lovely ladies. The full story is here.
When it was released in December 2005, Steven Spielberg’s “Munich” — the story of the Israeli agents tasked with assassinating those responsible for the 1972 Munich Olympics massacre — was criticized in some corners of the Jewish world for what was seen as lily-livered progressivism or, worse, downright hostility to Israel.
The New Republic’s Leon Wieseltier wrote that that the film was “soaked in the sweat of its idea of evenhandedness,” and that its “mechanical symmetries” came perilously close to “the sin of equivalence.” Mort Klein, president of the Zionist Organization of America, took matters a step further, arguing that the film “libels” Israel and humanizes Palestinian “haters and killers.” Klein ultimately urged a boycott.
In the spirit of sweaty evenhandedness, it should be noted that “Munich” also had its Jewish defenders. The Anti-Defamation League’s Abe Foxman called the portrayal of the film’s Israelis “humane,” adding that “they are struggling with issues the world is struggling with today.”
That said, there was not one commentator who saw in the film a tale of Jewish heroism. That is, until now.
Early in Judd Apatow’s new comedy “Knocked Up,” leading man Ben Stone (Seth Rogen) is at a bar with his zhlubby band of heym-boys. “You know what movie I just saw again the other day, which is just [expletive] mindblowing,” he says: “‘Munich.’”
“‘Munich!’” the posse cheers.
“That movie has Eric Bana [Israeli team leader Avner Kauffman] kicking [expletive] ass,” Ben continues. “Every movie with Jews, we’re the ones getting killed. ‘Munich’ flips it on its ear. We’re capping [people].”
“Not only killing, but taking names,” a friend chimes in.
“If any of us get laid tonight,” Ben says hopefully, “it’s because of Eric Bana and ‘Munich.’”
Not to give too much away — see the movie, it’s a hoot — but, as the film’s title might indicate, one of the boys does see some action that night. Whether or not the lucky girl had seen “Munich” is left an open question.
For one night, at least, MTV may as well have been the Jewish Television Network. Yesterday’s MTV Movie Awards had an unusually large number of young, hip celebrity Jews taking center-stage.
The show was hosted by comedian-of-the-moment Sarah Silverman, who, in typical faux-innocent fashion, mercilessly roasted Paris Hilton (conveniently in attendance). Silverman noted — to vigorous audience applause — that the hard-partying socialite was headed to jail, before lobbing an off-color barb that can’t be printed on a family blog. Of course, the camera, after each blow, cut to Paris, who did not seem pleased. For perhaps the first time ever, it was easy to feel sorry for the self-aggrandizing socialite. (Watch the video here.)