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I'm currently retired. In my working life, I have held many jobs. I am now a non-working actor and stand up comic. I have been a computer programmer and a web designer, among other things.

You know, my name wasn't always Shlomoh. I used to have a regular name, like you, Stanley. But I changed it to Shlomoh for show business reasons.

I tell people that my name is spelled with a silent H at the end. Silent letters! What genius thought of that concept? Imagine a guy who has a name with all silent letters! Hey you! What's your name? He just stands there with his mouth hanging open.

I had the negative distinction of being born on April 20. That, for your information, is Hitler's birthday.
Imagine! I was a young lad during World War 2, and all the kids at school made fun of me about Hitler's birthday. Even my family made fun of me about it. My parents would make a birthday party for me and instead of handing out little party hats to the children, they'd hand out little moustaches.

By now you already figured out that I'm a Jew. What else could I be? Just look at my face!
By the way; you know that little piece they cut off me when I was a baby? I still have that. My family had it bronzed. It was their way of making up for the little moustaches.

SHLOMOH WITH A SILENT FINAL H. The final H is silent but he never is. Shlomoh Sherman is a displaced New York Jew who likes to make people laugh. People have said that he is the most Jewish Jew and the most New Yorkiest New Yorker they have ever met. He is currently retired. In his working life, he has held many jobs. He is now a some time actor and stand up comic. His ex-wife used to call him the Orthodox Jewish Howard Stern. Shlomoh says he is a Jew's Jew and what else could he be? He likes to talk about his life. and about the world that Jews have to live in. What a funny place THAT is!!!!


Tisha B'Av is the saddest day on the Jewish calendar. It commemorates many tragedies throughout Jewish history, most significantly, the destruction of the First Temple in 586 BCE by the Babylonians and the destruction of the Second Temple by the Romans in 70 CE. On Tisha B'Av all pleasurable activity is forbidden.

The Scroll of Lamentations, which mourns the destruction of Jerusalem, is read in synagogues, followed by the recitation of kinnot, liturgical dirges that lament the loss of the Temple and Jerusalem. The day has become a day of mourning for all tragedies that have occurred to the Jewish people, not exclusively the tragedies associated with the month of Av. Therefore, some kinnot recall the murder of the Ten Martyrs, pogroms in Medieval Jewish communities during the Crusades, and the genocide of European Jewry in the Holocaust.

The Five Calamities

According to the Mishnah (Ta'anit 4:6), we fast on the 9th of Av because of the following events that took place on that day:
Before the Israelites entered the land of Israel, they sent spies to scout out the land. When the spies brought back a negative report, the Israelites cried on the 9th of Av, demonstrating a lack of faith in God. This generation was therefore punished and not allowed to enter the land. God decreed this would become a day of misfortune forever (Numbers 13-14).
The First Temple was destroyed by the Babylonians, led by Nebuchadnezzar. According to the Talmud, it began to burn on the Ninth of Av and continued through the Tenth.
The Second Temple, built by Ezra and Nehemiah, was destroyed by the Romans. This resulted in the scattering of Judea and began the Jewish exile from the Holy Land.
The Romans suppressed the Bar Kokhba revolt and killed over 500,000 Jews, destroying the city of Betar, on July 8th, 135 CE, or the 9th of Av, 3892.
Turnus Rufus, Roman commander who crushed the Bar Kokhba revolt, further demolished the site of the Temple and its surrounding area (135 CE).

Tisha B'Av Throughout History

In addition to the Five Calamities listed above, throughout Jewish history many tragic events have been associated with Tisha B'Av, including:
The tragedies that occurred on the 17th of Tammuz
The expulsion of the Jews from England in 1290
The expulsion of the Jews from Spain in 1492
The outbreak of World War I in 1914, which overturned many Jewish communities
Heinrich Himmler received approval for "The Final Solution" on the Ninth of Av in 1941. As a result, the Holocaust began, killing a third of the world's Jewish population
The mass deportation of Jews from the Warsaw Ghetto to Treblinka in 1942

Customs & Laws

In addition to the prohibitions of the Three Weeks and the Nine Days, these additional prohibitions are in place on Tisha B'Av:
Eating and drinking
Applying oils or perfumes
Wearing leather shoes
Sexual activity
Greeting people
Sitting on a chair: It is customary to sit on low chair or on the floor, as done when observing Shiva, beginning after the seudah hamafseket until midday.
Learning Torah: On Tisha B'Av, it is forbidden to study Torah since it is considered an enjoyable activity. However, upsetting texts such as the Book of Lamentations, the Book of Job, and portions of Jeremiah are permitted. It is also permissible to study chapters of the Talmud that discuss the laws of mourning.

Other Practices:

The SEUDAH HAMAFSEKET is the meal eaten right before the fast, consisting of a hard boiled egg and a piece of bread dipped into ashes. Once the fast begins, work should be avoided. After the meal, once the fast begins, kinnot are read with dimmed lighting. It is customary to modify normal sleeping arrangements to be slightly less comfortable on Tisha B'Av night. Tefilin is not put on for morning services, Shacharit, on Tisha B'Av. Both Tzitzit and Tefilin are put on with blessings at afternoon services, Mincha.

Material featured here was taken from the website at

Tisha B'Av, 2015, begins in the evening of Saturday, July 25 and ends in the evening of Sunday, July 26

You can learn more about Tisha b'Av at

If you want to report a problem with any page on this site, or a technical point, you may contact me by E-mail by clicking here ==>   Email Shlomoh

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Site created: September 11, 2008
Last updated: July 23, 2015

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