It’s that time of year again. The High Holy days. So break out your tickets, your ugliest ensemble that you save for synagogue, and put on your game-face.

1. Break the fast parties.

These fiestas are rife with opportunities for mingling and shmearing. Here is a sample dialogue that can be used in case you forget all of your mojo due to excessive hunger and post-Temple boredom:

“Hey, those bagels look awesome. Mind if I give you a shmear?”

— “No, not at all. I’m Jason, man I’m hungry. You look like you could use a good pile of capers. Are you Susan’s daughter? The one with the thing that happened at college and you were home for a bit and everyone was worried but now you’re fine and loving your sophomore year?”

“No, actually I’m Ruthie’s niece, the one who broke her leg during that awful chuppah accident? Yeah I know, it was bad. It was sort of blown out of proportion, but I’m fine thanks.”

— “Want to help me remove my yarmulke in the bathroom?”

“What do you do again?”

— “Private equity.”

“Sure, but let me eat something first. I’m in desperate need of half a scooped-out bagel.”

2. Sit next to a cute boy or girl at temple.

Oh hey, is this terribly uncomfortable seat taken? Do you mind if we travel in this boredom journey together for the next few hours? And sit down and stand up in unison? It could be cute and romantic.

3. Bathroom breaks.

All of that Crystal Light this morning is running straight through you, and you’re not sure if you can subtly pick your painful wedgie without the entire congregation shunning you. Plus you can BBM your Christian friends while you pee. Not to mention, you can’t go back in immediately so you can loiter with the other delinquent males, checking sports scores and adjusting themselves. Maybe they need help with that.

4. Mingling after services.

After services end, there’s more opportunity for shmearing than a ZBT/AEPhi mixer. Man, that Josh Steiner really got cute. I guess he finally dropped all of the weight and learned how to talk to women. That stupid name-dropper Becca got to him first. Hey, Becca! Is it true you flunked out of school? It’s such a shame, you had so much potential.

It’s so nice to see you, Max! How is Emory? How long are you home for? Long enough to get a drink and see where the night takes us after we’re done with the heavy guilt sessions from our relatives?

5. Pretend to faint while fasting.

I ate three tic-tacs this morning but don’t tell anyone, I don’t want to be smoted. But I am feeling very woozy, is it ok if I lean on you? You have very strong shoulders. What do you do again? Oh, nonprofit. Cool. I think I’m feeling ok.

By Meredith Fineman, author of Fifty First (J)Dates 

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