Thursday, July 8, 2010


My mother quite effortlessly perpetuates the stereotype of ... Okay, let me start over.

My mother had heard of a sale at a popular local optical store chain: buy a pair of prescription lenses for NIS 99 (ca. $25), get a frame (limited selection) for free. So naturally, we went, and I got myself a pair of readers to supplement my progressive lens pair of glasses from Philly.

Since that was a success, she suggested I get yet another pair, this time for distance. Since I wasn't crazy about the frames offered at the first location, we went to a different one today. When we got there, the Russian-accented salesperson we first encountered asked us to wait for a moment. Then she calls, "xamudi!" – which in Hebrew means 'cutie!' 

I asked my mother, "was she talking to me?" We both were puzzled. Then a smily white-cloaked optometrist with a slightly Arabic-accented Hebrew comes out and tends to us. I then realized his name tag read ħammu:di, which in Arabic is a common hypocoristic of muħammad.

I guess this story really should have a point. But whatever point I point out, it is likely to sound corny, so just draw your own conclusions. Or don't.

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