Tzedakeh, Touchdowns And You

ffWhen I hear “Super Sunday,” I expect a phone call from my local Jewish Federation looking for pledges, but that’s because I’m not much of a football fan. Most people in this sports-obsessed country know it’s all about the pigskin this Sunday, when the Chicago Bears battle the Indianapolis Colts in the 41st Super Bowl in South Florida. (Funny, I do believe Da Bears won the very last Super Bowl I watched back in 1986, the year all the players did that painful MTV rap video known as the “Superbowl Shuffle.”)

Even if you don’t get a call from the J-Feds, there’s still ways to make this national “holiday” Jewish. The Union for Reform Judaism urges football fans this year to think of others while snarfing down the traditional “holiday” foods of nachos, Cheetos and chili dogs:

In their program guide to secular holidays, the Religious Action Center suggests “asking fans to plan a trip to the local food pantry or help organize a community wide to project to help end hunger” before settling down on the couch for the afternoon. A mighty resource of conscience and action, “the program guide aims to raise awareness and help individuals and congregations fight injustice even while enjoying the game.”

It’s probably a little late to host a Super Bowl party for the homeless at the synagogue, but an hour collecting cans of food throughout the neighborhood while everyone’s dousing themselves in the pre-game beer stupor could make for a windfall for the local food bank.

If you’re already down in that sunny South Florida neck o’ da woods, you should definitely hit the hottest Super Bowl party in the upper 48, hosted by Jmerica at XTreme Indoor Karting in Fort Lauderdale. Even if you’re not a football fan (or Jewish, for that matter,) there’ll be games, prizes, food and plenty of big-screens to watch the action.

As for me, I’ll be waiting by the phone, waiting to give a few shekels to my peeps. Just call me in at half-time when my man Prince hits the field.

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