Programa Chino

Dec 15th, 2009 by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Reflections & Observations
Help! I’m in the car with my wife and sister-in-law, two Argentines, who love, what they call “Progama Chino,” Chinese Programs. The challenge is to make a list of errands that can only be performed on the streets with the heaviest traffic in New York. The list must only be completed 30 seconds before Lulu’s plane leaves for Montreal. You must understand that participants in a Programa Chino may only arrive at the airport one minute or less before a flight. The most important part of the program is called, “Ya que estamos” – “once we’re here,” let’s add an additional task to our list. The added task must absolutely be impossible for anyone other than an Argentine.

I’m keeping tabs on tasks. We began with two, but once we realized that the holiday shopping traffic is so impossible, they added four more.

Sorry; it’s now five…six.

I came along because I benefit so much from Debbie’s Argentine essence that I figured I could suffer through one “Programa Chino.” I was wrong. I feel as if I am in a script for a new reality survival show called Program Chino. Someone save me! It’s my birthday!

The chutzpah! Debbie is claiming that I do the same thing with my learning on Shabbat: By the end of Shabbat I have piles of Sefarim on my desk with a list of ideas for essays that is so long that I would need a Programa Chino to complete it!

Am I becoming Argentine?

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