These and Those

Musings from Students of the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem

You’re at Pardes, Charlie Brown

Posted on February 26, 2013 by Derek Kwait

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My skit from the Purim Shpiel. Script is included below the video.

You’re at Pardes, Charlie Brown


[JESS is standing holding a football, smiling. DEREK approaches.]

JESS: Hey, Derek Kwait, do you want to be football chevrutas?

DEREK: “Football chevrutas?” What’s that?

J: It’s where I hold the ball and you come running up and kick it.

D: Oh, I don’t know…

J: It’s fun! I think it would be special to be football chevrutas with someone from Pittsburgh, I bet you know a lot. It would be great learning football with you.

D: Well, actually, Jess, in spite of my hometown and black and gold shirt, I’m actually not so good at football.

J: Oh, stop being so modest, you really need to learn to believe in yourself, Derek Kwait. I believe in you.

D: You do?!

J: Sure!

D: Okay! Let me show you how we kick a football in Pittsburgh!

[JESS kneels down holding football in place under one finger. DEREK excitedly moves back and revs to kick the ball. Just as he begins to run, STU comes up to Jess.]

STU: Hey, Jess! Do you maybe want to be my football chevruta?

J: [Standing up with football just as DEREK is about to kick it] Sure!

[DEREK screams as he trips upon attempting to kick the football but misses. He lands with his head facing the audience.]

J: [Looking down at DEREK] Oh, I’m sorry, Derek Kwait, but I actually think Stu might be more on my level. Maybe next time.

D: [Sighing] Good grief!


[JESS is in exactly as in the beginning of SCENE I. DEREK then enters also in the same way.]

J: Hey, Derek Kwait, do you want to be football chevrutas?

D: Oh, no, not this again. I know what’s going to happen.

J: That was a mistake last time, and I’m sorry. You’ll give me another chance, won’t you? I really want to be football chevrutas with you.

D: Okay. I believe in second chances. This could be fun!

J: Now you’re talking!

[JESS gets into her football holding position as DEREK moves back.]

D: That ol’ football won’t know what hit it!

[Shortly after he begins running towards the ball, MIKE BACKMAN comes up and kicks it first.]

M: [As he kicks the ball]: Go Bengals!

[DEREK screams BACKMAN!!! as he trips over the absent ball and lands with his head to the side.]

J: [Looking down on DEREK] One of these days you’ll kick the football, Derek Kwait! I believe in you!

D: You do, even after all this?

J: Yes! I do so much that I’m even willing to try it again. [BACKMAN throws her the ball from off stage].

D: Oh, no! I might make the same mistake twice, but I’m not dumb enough to make it a third time. You really mean that if I were to get up and try it again, you absolutely swear you wouldn’t pull it away?

J: I totally swear. I vow it, even.

D: [Getting up and getting into position along with JESS.] Alright, I believe you. If you can’t trust someone you go to yeshiva with, whom can you trust? This time I’m going to kick that football clear across the Green Line!

[He runs to kick it. JESS pulls it away. DEREK screams as he falls.]

J: I just realized we didn’t have kosher witnesses, Derek Kwait! I just learned in Halakha that a vow isn’t binding without kosher witnesses! Halakhically, my promise meant nothing! You try to follow Halakha, don’t you Derek Kwait?

D: I can’t stand it, I just can’t stand it.


[JESS is standing as at the beginning of the previous two acts. DEREK also enters the same way.]

J: There you are, Derek Kwait! I wanted to tell you I’m sorry, I did t’shuva! I just took Tovah Leah’s class about t’shuva, and she opened me up to these regrets I didn’t even realize I had! I feel like a new person now, really.

D: Well, that’s so great to hear, Jessica, ‘shkoyach! If you’re truly sorry, of course I can forgive you.

J: But it’s not enough just to say you’re sorry, Derek Kwait. Tovah Leah said real t’shuva only happens once you’re in the same situation as you were before, but you act differently. [She gestures towards him with the football].

D: No, really, Jessica. You don’t have to, I forgive you, it’s fine.

J: No, I have to actually do it or else it’s not real t’shuva, Tovah Leah said so! Doesn’t your responsibility as a Fellow require you to be a Jewish role model? You wouldn’t want to hold me back from t’shuva, would you, Derek Kwait?

D: Chas v’chalila that I should hold a Jew back from t’shuva! Meir would kill me if I did. Alright, I’ll give you this opportunity.

J: Oh, thank you, Derek Kwait! You’re such a great Jewish role model, I’m so inspired to change!

D: [As they assume their positions] I just hope your football forgives me for what I’m going to do to it!

[DEREK runs, JESS pulls away, DEREK screams.]

J: I just had a sudden realization that my t’shuva wasn’t really coming from the right place, I think I need to open myself up more before true t’shuva is possible.

D: [Getting up] She sins and I’m the one that suffers!

[Just as DEREK begins to storm away, DLK {ADAM} appears behind a sign saying “Jewish Life Coaching, 5 The Life Coach is: IN”]

DLK {ADAM}: Why, hello, nice people! Did somebody make a subtle reference to Jesus? Ask me a question!

D: Why is she such a psychopath?

DLK: [Holding out his hand.] Five shekels, please.

[DEREK reluctantly digs into his pocket and gives DLK 5 shekels.]

DLK: [Gives a monologue about the situation that will involve Jesus]

D: What does that mean! That wasn’t helpful at all!

DLK: Well, Derek Kwait, what did you expect for 5 shekels? Welcome to Israel, you blockhead!

J: [Taps DEREK’s shoulder] Come with me, I know a conflict-resolution guy, he’s really good.

[They walk a few steps and come across DANIEL ROTH {ABAYISS}].

J: What do you make of our conflict, Rabbi Roth?

DANIEL {ABAYISS}: [Goes on a monologue about the situation that stresses the importance of making “I” statements and finding a third story.]

D: [Flailing his arms in the air] Isn’t there anybody at Pardes who isn’t so postmodern that they can just tell Jessica it’s wrong to keep pulling the football away from me! I want justice!


ALL: Meesh!?

MEESH: Judaism is a religion of social justice!!! Anachnu! Rotzim! Tzedek Chevrati!

MEESH AND JESSICA: Anachnu! Rotzim! Tzedek Chevrati!

ALL EXCEPT DEREK: Anachnu! Rotzim! Tzedek Chevrati!

D: Oh, Good grief!

ALL: [Pointing to DEREK] You’re at Pardes, Derek Kwait!