As an observer of human behavior – but not in a creepy way – I firmly believe that the best way to solve a lot of sholom bayis problems is to point out that it’s not just your own personal spouse who’s like that. A lot of times it turns out that that’s just how people of that gender are.  They’re not doing this behavior to annoy you – they’re just hard-wired that way.  And getting upset at them is like getting upset at a dog for not buying you flowers on your birthday. Sure, you can spend years training the dog to do it, but A: He definitely won’t do it if you don’t train him, and B: Even if you do train him, he’s still going to think that all the other dogs are going to look at him weird. 

This week’s column is about stiff necks.  Nothing to do with the fact that many of us slept in the sukkah last week.

Stiff necks are a real pain in the neck.  (Ouch.)  (Ouch for that too.)  And they always strike without warning.  They just sneak up behind you – often while you’re sleeping – and before you can turn around, they’re upon you!  And then you can’t turn around.

Whenever you want to go anywhere, there’s traffic.  And people know this.  That’s why when you get there, everyone asks, “How was traffic?” 

“Traffic was the best.  I got a lot of thinking done.  Also, my right leg is now about six times stronger than my left leg.  I can kill a turtle.”

But there has to be some way to avoid it, right? 

The Aseres Yemei Teshuvah is a serious time, and we do a lot of things in all seriousness.

But in all seriousness, it’s sometimes difficult for our kids to tell which things are minhagim and which we just happen to do.  So you should really take the time to talk to your kids about it.  Sooner than later, especially if your minhag is not to talk on Yom Kippur.