real talk parsha: vayeshev [gen 37:1–40:23]

real talk parsha. because obviously Gd has a sense of humor. just look at your face.

ok.  so maybe not everyone wants to admit that jews run the media. but i think we can all agree that jews definitely run hollywood. and the reason for that is b/c we’ve been nursed on apocalyptic world ending/changing michael emmerich/roland bay adventures and outlandish, improbable susan lucci-esque dramas since childhood as evidenced right here, this week, when Gd creates the soap opera as we know it. no seriously.

see, im guessing since the torah hadnt been given yet and all, that the angels had pretty much absolutely nothing to do with their time, and had taken to randomly running up and down metaphysical staircases sprinkled in with the occasional instance of them running up on ppl in the middle of the night and fighting them. so Gd’s all like, “look, y’all need to calm that ish down” and to keep their attention occupied, creates “Joseph: The Series.”

how can you say this isn’t some soap opera type nonsense? think of all the convoluted extended storyline, side character stories, lost sibling, mistaken identity, sibling rivalry, secret lover, illicit affair, wrongly accused/imprisoned underdog, rags to riches, supernatural ability, knockdown drag out fist fights of anything on Days Of Our Lives and it cant hold a candle to the next few weeks we have ahead of us. in fact, let’s make a drinking game out of this and take a shot for every soap-opera trope.

in this thrilling premiere episode, joseph, the “spoiled” nearly youngest son [drink] of jacob’s most beloved dead wife [drink] who has the power of prophetic dreams [drink] is sold into slavery by his envious siblings [drink]. at first they intend to kill him, but joseph finds an unlikely ally [drink] in reuben who says to spare his life. reuben then makes a big show of leaving with the secret intention of returning to rescue joseph from the pit [drink]. the brothers sell joseph, reuben returns just in time to be too late [drink], the brothers deceive their father into thinking his favorite son is dead [drink], and the brothers vow never to reveal their secret [drink]. joseph ends up being bought in egypt by pharoah’s damn near right hand man [drink].

meanwhile [drink], judah has an affair with his daughter in law [drink], gets her pregnant [drink], marries her [drink], has twins [drink].

returning to the main storyline in egypt [drink], joseph impresseses his new boss potiphar so much that he’s appointed head of the household [drink]. but potiphar is out of the house a lot and doesnt have any time for his wife [drink], so potiphar’s wife waits till everyone is out of the house [drink] and tries seducing joseph [drink] who runs out of the house so fast that he leaves behind the incriminating evidence of his robe [drink].  joseph is then wrongfully sent to jail [drink] where he charms the warden into making him the inside boss of the prison [drink]. whilst in prison joseph uses his dream powers [drink] to tell pharoah’s butler and baker their fates. true to joseph’s word [drink], the baker is sentenced to death and the butler is set free.

will the butler remember joseph?

find out next week!

[drink]

[disclaimer: please, do not expect “real talk” to make actual biblical sense. if you are looking for a legitimate commentary of meaning and substance, this ain’t the place. it’s less “onkelos” and more “onion“, get me?]

–MaNishtana

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