Dr. D. called the NF early on in chol hamoed to let me know that material had made itself available at Tel Aviv hotel on the water.
We, the gonging community, appreciate Dr. D's thinking of us while on holiday and providing us with this guest post.
Emboldened by his recent award of a golden shtender, Dr D, physician, went with high spirits to a top hotel in Tel Aviv for Succot. Actually Dr D should point out that that the NF awarded 4 golden shtenders for Yom Kippur, which given that there are only 5 services reduces the meaning somewhat but Dr D is still delighted.
Now, the NF has already written about hotel minyanim, but the events of Succot were so terrible that they need documenting in order to warn future generations.
On Shabbat Chol HaMoed, Dr D decided to attend the hotel minyan as he could not be bothered to walk 15mins to the shul he was familiar with. Also, stuffed with pastries, cheeses and coffee, the walk to the hotel shul was difficult enough let alone beyond....There was a sense of foreboding as the hotel chazzan (whose voice resembled a stuttering sheep according to a relative) has a bad habit of incorporating his two sons (pre-pubescent) into the davening. Dr D has strident views on Jewish music - basically, Jewish music is bad enough, but sung by boys is excrutiating. Hearing pre-teenage boys screaming high notes all pronounced in that heavy oy-de-doy asheknazus makes Dr D pray for deafness. More on that later. Meanwhile, one of the obviously affluent Americans in the crowd did Pesukei Dezimra- and SANG most of the post-Ashrei paragraphs. By 'sang', he actually had figured out tunes to things -including applying Mizmor LeDavid for the latter half of Nishmat - huge huge gong. What next?? Rabbi Yishmael omer to Tov Lehodot Hashem?!?! This is the problem of letting rich people daven. Too many people suck up to them and let them get away with nusach-acide.
Shacharit- an Israeli led this and it has to be conceded that he was good so onwards....
Mussaf -cue the Chazzan and his two sons who sounded like strangled cats -really - terrible. Boys -like Jewish music should be seen and not heard (actually,not seen either).
But the piece de resistance - yes - Avinu Avinu with the two strangled cats humming the HaTikva at the end.
The gong was bashed to pieces.
thank you Dr. D.
--- the NF