Despite the husband, the two kids, the three chickens, two fish, a dog and the cat who we all call the tabby shite, I have decided to come out of the closet.
I have been in the closet for over 40 years, shrugging mainly.
Coming out of the closet has meant though, that I have had to start schlepping everywhere; to the supermarket, to the library, to the south side. Who can get matzo on the north side?
And kvetching? Don’t get me started. Kvetching about the weather. Kvetching about the price of fish. Kvetching about the possums in the roof.
Sadie tells me Justine, no need to kvetch, just get the rabbi over. Last time they had possums in the roof at his house, he gave them all a batmizvah and they never came back.
Kvetching here, kvetching there. The other day I go to Glicks bakery café with my friends. They know me here, I say, sit, sit.
We order, we eat. The waiter comes over and asks Today Mrs. Sless, is anything alright?
Justine my friends and family say, you’ve got chutzpah doing comedy.
Chutzpah? I say Chutzpah?
And I tell them,I saw this little old lady on the tram to St Kilda the other day. She was clutching her chest and said to the young girl seated in front of her, If you knew what I have, you would give me your seat.
The girl got up and gave up her seat. Then the young girl takes her magazine and starts fanning herself. The little old lady says to the young girl, “If you knew what I have, you would give me that newspaper so I could cool off.” The girl gives her the magazine.
A bit of time goes by, then the old lady gets up and says to the tram driver, I want to get off right here.
The tram driver says she will have to wait until he gets to the next stop.
The old lady clutches her chest again and tells him, If you knew what I have, you’d let me off right now.
The tram driver stops suddenly and everyone on the tram lurches forward. The tram driver tells the little old lady that she can get off the tram right away.
As the little old lady steps off the tram, the tram driver asks her, Ma’am, I hope you don’t mind my asking, but what is it you have?
The little old lady replies: Chutzpah!
Excuse me there are challah crumbs in my comedy
But why now? my friends ask, why are coming out of the closet now?
Closet shcmoset, I say.
Because now, I am tired of remaining silent. After all these years. People are always looking at me, all of them asking, are you Greek? Are you Italian?
It’s time to put things straight.
Now after all this time I look at them and I ask them: This nose? This hair? This humour?Am I Greek? Am I Italian? Are you kidding me?