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  • a nechtiker tog

    interj. "Not on your life!"

  • aleichem sholom

    interj. Peace be upon you (response to "sholom aleichem").

  • aleph-bet

    n. "A name for the Hebrew alphabet" (JPS)

  • alte kaker

    n. Elderly person, old-timer; "A crotchety, fussy, ineffectual old man" (Rosten).

  • am haaretz

    n. Bumpkin, ignoramus, uneducated person.

  • apikoros

    n. Heretic, non-believer, especially one with great knowledge of Judaism.

  • aroisgevorfene gelt

    n. "A waste of money"; lit., thrown out money.

  • Ashkenazic

    adj. Adjectival form for 'Ashkenazim', "The name given to the group of Jews who were originally from Germany and France, and their descendants" (JPS).

  • averah

    n. Religious transgression (Glinert: "An aveirah is an infringement on the Torah, the opposite of a mitzvah.").

  • bagel

    n. "A leavened, firm, doughnut shaped roll" (JPS).

  • balaboosta

    n. Female head of household.

  • balabos

    n. Male head of a household.

  • balabotish

    adj. "Quiet; respectable; well mannered" (Rosten). "middle class"; normal.

  • batlan

    n. "Someone without a trade or regular means of livelihood" (Rosten).

  • bench

    v. JPS: "To recite a blessing. It usually refers to Birkat ha-Mazon, the Grace after Meals... The word can also refer to the reciting of any blessing; for example, the expression bentsch licht means to light Shabbat [or Chanukah] candles."

  • berya

    n. "Complimentary term for a talented, competent, energetic woman, especially one who gets a lot done - and does it well - around the house." (JPS Dictionary of Words)

  • bialy

    n. A flat breakfast roll, shaped like a round wading pool, sometimes sprinkled with onion. (Rosten)

  • blintz

    n. A folded thin pancake filled with cheese, fruit, or potatoes.

  • Borscht Belt

    n. Region in the Catskill Mountains with many summer resorts frequented by Jews, especially in the mid twentieth century.

  • boychick

    n. "A young boy...equivalent of the American expression 'buddy'" (JPS)