Grandma Sally, starting me off on the right foot from a very young age
This is the first post of a new, continuing Oy! series, Things my Jewish Grandma says…If you have a Jewish grandma who says funny things, tell us about her in the comments section below or email us at
Grandma Sally is 90 years old. She has accrued a lifetime’s worth of wisdom, which she is only to happy to share in the form of unsolicited advice. Truth be told, what she says oftentimes makes sense. She simply has an unintentionally funny way of getting her point across. Here are just a few of Grandma Sally’s pearls of wisdom:
Never smoke a cigarette if it doesn’t have a name written on it.
--Grandma Sally doled out this practical advice to each child and grandchild as we headed off to college. With visions of Reefer Madness dancing in her brain, she clearly was more troubled by the thought that her progeny might join a hippie commune than the thought of us smoking an arguably more life-threatening cigarette.
Watch out for California girls that tell you they’re on the pill…
--As my little brother prepared for his move to San Francisco, “the land of fruits and nuts” as Grandma calls it, she pulled him aside to offer this vague advice. The incomplete thought implies that California girls, unlike the wholesome Illinois variety, are liars, and that alternative forms of contraception should be employed. Needless to say, Andy didn’t stick around to hear the rest of the advice.
If you go bowling with a boy, let him win because he will feel special.
--Women’s lib be damned. Grandma Sally believes men have fragile egos, and a loss at the bowling alley would likely mean no trip down the aisle. Why risk our chance to land a perfect mensch just because we're feeling competitive?