Jewish Journal


December 29, 2009

Embracing the Jewfro



It’s definitely that Jewfro time of the year for me. Fortunately, I’m in good company. After all, Friday was Jesus’ birthday.

The Jewfro is a Greenberg family tradition. (So is the mustache, but that had to stop at my generation.) My dad has been rocking the Brillo pad since being a McDonald’s fry guy was a cool high school job. And then I didn’t know how deep my Jewy roots really ran, I’ve since learned that my head of hair can’t escape it. Amen.

Of course, I’m not the only fan of the Jewfro. On his blog, Eugene Rubin waxes nostalgic about the days when he could embrace his wild Jewish locks:

If I’d known then what I know now, I would have celebrated my Hebrew halo. Sadly, my once-magnificent Jewfro has migrated south … to my back. Thus, it’s too late for me to enjoy what is now seen as the epitome of Semitic virility. But I’m a physician, dedicated to helping others: I’ve done the research, and I’m now prepared to pass on the recipe for the perfect Jewfro.

Like snowflakes, Jewfros have endless variations, which can be grouped roughly: “The Traditionalist” (Gabe “Mr. Kotter” Kaplan, James Caan, Elliott Gould), “The Fat-n-Funny” (the newly trim Seth Rogen, Jonah Hill), “The California Blonde” (Art Garfunkel, Victor Garber), “The Rebel” (Howard Stern, Larry Fine), “The Intelligentsia” (Albert Einstein and, what the heck, Albert Brooks, whose real name is Albert Einstein), “The Goyfro” (Nick Jonas, John McEnroe), “The Pube” (Gene Wilder), “The Rockfro” (Bob Dylan, Adam Duritz, Marc Bolan), and, of course, “The Sistafro” (Barbra Streisand, Bette Midler, Rhea Pearlman).

Your own Jewfro may be loose and bouncy, or tight and kinky. However it may sprout from your dome, rest assured that if you treat it right, it’ll turn heads and turn on the ladies. Neglect it and you’ll be just another nappy-headed Jewish nerd.

True story: My wife once told friends that my curly hair was her favorite feature of mine. That’s funny because when we got married she had never seen my hair longer than an overdue buzzcut.

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