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  • alte kaker

    elderly person, old-timer [literally "old shitter"] "A crotchety, fussy, ineffectual old man." (Rosten)

  • arba kanfot

    A tallit katan (see tzitzit)

  • balaboosta

    1) Female head of household 2) Impressively competent homemaker

  • bashert

    Predicate adj. "Predestined, fated" (JPS)

  • bencher

    prayer booklet or card with the text of the blessings after meals, and often times including other meal-time blessings and songs

  • besamim

    "Literally, 'spices.' It almost always refers to the spices in the spice box used for the Havdalah ceremony" (JPS).

  • bialy

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

  • borscht

    "Borshtsh" is the Russian word for beet soup. Among Jews soup made from beets is considered Polish borshtsh, while Russian borshtsh is made from cabbage.

  • boychick

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

  • bris

    circumcision ceremony; the celebration surrounding it. Lit. covenant.

  • bubbale

    sweetie, darling [term of endearment]

  • bubbe

    grandmother

  • bubbe meise

    "Something of little importance, an inconsequential thing or minor happening." (JPS)

  • cheder

    Hebrew and religious classes (often on Sundays) for elementary school children.

  • chrain

    a spicy paste made from grated horseradish.

  • dybbuk

    a spirit, "often thought to be the soul of a dead person, that wanders the earth looking for a living body to inhabit" (JPS)

  • farbissiner

    adj. embittered, sullen, mean

  • farchadat

    "Dizzy, confused, dopey, 'punchy.'" (Rosten)

  • farfel

    a side dish including bits of noodle, often sauteed with vegetables and beef or chicken stock

  • farkakte

    "lousy, messed up, ridiculous" (JPS) Shitty, full of crap.