For over ten years, we've had a pretty set schedule on Independence Day. First, Tefillah. At 11AM, we watch the Bible Quiz. Then, it's mangal time. We're back at 1930 to watch the Israel Prize. This year, though, is different.
First, we mangalled last night, after returning from the settlement's ceremony and fireworks. Second, at my daughter's suggestion, we actually went to the Chidon TaNaKh, at the Jerusalem Theatre. It was really cool. The place was packed. The representatives were from all over thye globe. The finalists included non-Orthodox kids (a very promising sign). The Education Minister (my opinion of whomis well known), actually spoke nicely. The music was upscale and the filmclips that convey the questions were really moving.
The best part was at the end. The two leading contenders, a boy and a girl (both Israeli), had to go head to head.They were asked incredible difficult questions from all over TaNaKh. Neither flinched. In the end, the boy took it by one point. As they were tabulating the results, he walked over to the judges and demanded that a point be taken away from him, because one of his answers had not been perfect!!!! The result would have been a tie.
Do you hear that? A kid asked that he lose, because he felt he'd been unjustly rewarded!!! Is that a KIddush HaShem, or what? (The kid goes to ישיבה לצעירים).
In the end, the judges insisted that he keep the point. He won, the girl was his deputy. However, when Olmert gave him the trophy, he was visibly unhappy (and I don't think it was only because he had to deal with Olmert). Frankly, I agree with him. The girl was so good, they should have made them share the prize.
The moral lesson, and the inspiration derived from seeing the mastery of the Bible were incredibly uplifting.
I think we have a new family traditionin the making.