The student had been summoned to see the rabbi. It was the custom in Frampol for the rabbi to meet individually with the students in order to test their understanding. The student had worked with the rabbi for ten years; He had worked hard, both in Torah, and Talmud. Possible questions and scenarios of questions that might come from the rabbi raced through his head. He was ready for them all.

The day was rainy, but his spirits were high. At the appointed time, he walked over to the rabbi’s house. The rabbi immediately asked: “When you entered the house, did you put your shoes to the right of your umbrella or to the left?” The student hesitated; “What the hell kind of question is that?” he cried. The rabbi smiled and gave semicha to the student.

About Michael Butchin

I was born, according to the official records, in the Year of the Ram, under the Element of Fire, when Johnson ruled the land with a heavy heart; in the Cradle of Liberty, to a family of bohemians. I studied Chinese language and literature at Rutgers University, New Brunswick. I spent some years in Taiwan teaching kindergarten during the day, and ESOL during the evenings. I currently work as a high school ESOL teacher, and am an unlikely martial artist. I have spent much of my life amongst actors, singers, movie stars, beautiful cultists, Taoist immortals, renegade monks, and at least one martial arts tzaddik. I currently reside in Beijing's Dongcheng district
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