I have a pint-sized Jewish ex-girlfriend named Lori who once asked if I thought that Jewish girls were better lovers.
It was a funny question. Better than what? I had to think about it. It never occurred to me that there was some kind of tacit competition going on, pitting the home Jewesses against the visiting teams from the other major religions.
Who judges this contest? How do I get in on that action? Do the other girls even know that this is a medal sport? Are the gentile girls honing their seductive skills at cotillions -- ballroom dancing with those little white gloves and learning how to be courtesans -- while our princesses are at Hess Kramer summer camp playing softball? Who's in charge here?
"You're miles ahead of the Muslims," I said, "but I think the Hindus have a lot going for them with that 'Kama Sutra.'"
There is little reliable research in this field. Still, I felt it was important to get a statistical sampling that would stand up to the scrutiny of the most pedantic scholars, so I asked my friend Mickey.
I know Mickey from Hebrew school in the old country, Encino, so he ought to know about this stuff. He said there are two ways you can look at this thing:
(a) There's no difference at all, at least none associated with religious affiliation, or
(b) Jewish girls are either better or worse, and it has everything to do with the Jewish part.
"It depends on what you want," he said. "If you just want to fool around, anyone will do. breaking up with a non-Jewish girl is easier to do. Breaking up with a Jewish girl is like that song 'Hotel California': 'You can check out anytime you like, but you can never leave.'"
"Score that round to the gentiles," I said.
"But when you're done having fun, and you want to settle down, marry a nice Jewish girl. All things being equal, they make for better partners."
"Aren't you stereotyping?" I asked.
"Yes, I am," he said. "But doesn't that make it so much easier to understand?"
Let's confront those stereotypes: We only half-jokingly refer to our girls as "princesses." We treat them like princesses and expect them to make a reservation for dinner -- just like mother used to make. All the snide, inside jokes about them being hard-to-please, diet-obsessed shop-a-holics? Consider that the alternative is someone who gladly accepts mediocrity and doesn't care about how she presents herself. At least our team came dressed to play.
Don't believe me? Go to one of those fly-over states (any of the states in the middle that Bush won) where we are conspicuously absent, and take a look for yourself. Those broads look horrible!
Hair? Wrong. Clothes? Wrong. Shoes? Wrong. Jewish girls kick their tuchis. Why? Because our gals are hard-to-please, diet-obsessed shop-a-holics. You go, girls!
As for the perception that they're pushy, I don't think that's necessarily a bad thing. They let you know where you stand. I'll take an aggressive JAP over a passive-aggressive WASP any day. Less covert manipulation makes for a fair fight.
Jewish girls are much more business-like. They call you back. Gentiles are working off a whole different deal. I don't know if it's a part of the gospels or "The Rules," but somewhere in their religious training was the idea that they should not call boys on the telephone, except under extreme duress. (Think of Annie Hall and the spider.)
Jewish girls know what's what. They have great doctors, or they are great doctors. They know whom to call. They're resourceful. They know when things go on sale, which is important because they buy a lot of stuff.
But the best thing about Jewish girls: they get it. They're in on the joke (like, for instance, this column). You don't have to explain stuff to them. You start the book in the middle. You say "Dayenu," and they know what you mean. Say "Ma Nishtana," and they nod. Their mother is exactly the same as yours, only different. They understand us and our mishegas better than the other gals do. Their nurturing side may lean toward smothering, but there are worse things, like indifference.
It's hard enough getting any two people together, and when you put qualifiers on it that they have to be thus and so, it gets harder still. But even if Jewish girls aren't demonstrably better, they're at least as good as the competition, and, given a toss-up, I'd give them the edge.
Then, factor in that they're on my side, in my tribe, and that makes them better. As if there were ever any doubt, Lori.