Crown Heights Dress Code
  • http://gothamist.com/2014/07/25/please_dress_modestly_orders_crown.php


    Signs put up in Crown Heights:
    "Love and Respect," it reads, with "love" printed in gentle, sloping red cursive. "Respect," though, has a sharper tone, with white block letters suggesting a Machiavellian sternness. "Dear Resident, Guest, Visitor," it goes on. "PLEASE DRESS MODESTLY. THIS IS A JEWISH NEIGHBORHOOD."
  • Yeah they love to pull this shit. Question is will their quasi police force harass people who don't dress to their standards?
  • If people were walking around naked (in a manner that violated NYC laws), then the beef would be more legitimate. While I understand that segment of the (orthodox Jewish) community has certain stringent standards for modesty, there's not much recourse here, unless that part of the neighborhood were to become private a la Sea Gate.
  • The Crown Heights Orthodox (aka Lubavitch) seem far more mellow about dress than the Williamsburg Orthodox (aka Satmars).

    Both groups give public tours:
    Williamsburg: http://hasidicwilliamsburgtour.com/

    CH: https://jewishtours.com/dt_portfolio/congregation-lubavitch-770-eastern-parkway/

    When I went on the Lubavitch tour, we toured some of the group's most religious sites and the guide seemed to distance himself (and therefore the community) from its most radical members.

    ...like those who post flyers on poles telling people how to dress.
  • No official recourse, certainly, but it is legal for a woman to walk down Kingston wearing nothing but a thong in NYC - that doesn't mean they won't harrass you, throw things, etc. - they certainly have:  http://gothamist.com/2013/01/30/hasidic_vigilantes_williamsburgs_mo.php


    In Israel, ultra-Orthodox Jewish girls have been attacked for baring their legs not wearing stockings. An elderly woman was also beaten by the modesty police in Jerusalem.
    Yosef Rapaport, a Hasidic journalist, explained, "There are quite a few men, especially in Williamsburg, who consider themselves Gut’s polizei [God's police]... It’s somebody who is a busybody, and they’re quite a few of them — zealots who take it upon themselves and they just enforce. They’re considered crazy, but people don’t want to confront them."
  • I think the neighborhood is going to have a lot more of this as the residential population trends whiter. The Hasidim didn't care what any of the black residents wore as they were very easily distinguished as "other". Now that the neighborhood is filling up with non-religious Sarahs, Rachels and Aarons I expect that the culture wars around dress and modesty (both for guys and girls) are REALLY going to kick off, especially south of EP where the concentrations of Hasidic families are much greater.
  • homeowner said:

    I think the neighborhood is going to have a lot more of this as the residential population trends whiter. The Hasidim didn't care what any of the black residents wore as they were very easily distinguished as "other". Now that the neighborhood is filling up with non-religious Sarahs, Rachels and Aarons I expect that the culture wars around dress and modesty (both for guys and girls) are REALLY going to kick off, especially south of EP where the concentrations of Hasidic families are much greater.



    Here's something funny - yesterday evening I saw a black Orthodox Jewish couple walking west on Eastern Parkway between Classon and Franklin. (I could tell by the way the woman was dressed- modestly with a wig. The guy's tzitzit was visible below the hem of his shirt.) 
  • I observed a few black Lubavitch at the kids parade a few months ago:

    http://www.brooklynian.com/discussion/43978/that-really-big-parade-on-eastern-parkway-for-orthodox-jewish-kids-may-18-2014-10-am/p1

    But I am with homeowner, I don't think Naquan or Destiny have much to worry about now or in the future.

    Ms. Whynot (on the otherhand) is visibly Jewish. She informs me that she ocassionally gets disapproving looks in CH, yet still feels comfortable getting "real bagels" on Kingston while wearing pants.

    However, when we find ourselves walking thru the Satmar area of Bedford Avenue on a hot day, she is uncomfortable to the degree that I am the one who is to go into the store to buy a big bottle of water.

    ...because there, similar signs are not posted by outliers on poles; they are posted by STOREKEEPERS on store doors.
  • Woman have also had acid thrown on them when they do not dress modestly. Midwood is also more liberal than BP. But CH seems to be one of the most liberal out of the Ultra-Orthodox with regard to dress. By far, the Hasidic community is the most conservative. Naomi Ragen has written some really good books about the communities.
  • NY Magazine did a piece on Black Hasids a few years ago. Oprah also did a piece several years ago when she came to Crown Heights. She actually interviewed a Black Lubavich family.

    http://nymag.com/news/features/black-jews-2012-12/
  • Most importantly; whynot, where are the "realbagels" to be found on Kingston?
  • The guy on page 2, Nechemyah Davis, is clearly an outlier.

    My sense is most of the black jews are jewish by virture of having a Jewish mother. He, on the otherhand, converted and is now Lubavitch.

    I don't know that the Satmars accept someone who was not jewish converting ....much less someone who was really VISIBLY not previously jewish.

  • @Crownheightster -
    I don't believe she has a preference between the various bagel places on Kingston. She just prefers small chewy bagels to big puffy ones, and Kingston exclusively carries small chewy ones.

    However, as you may be aware, Kingston is closed on Saturdays. So, weekend bagels are often purchased on Saturday mornings from Prospect Perk (Flatbush and Sterling), which carries small chewy bagels made by Bagel Hole (7th Ave and 12th in the slope).

    This preference/routine has survived the arrival of:
    -Lula on Nostrand,
    -Old Bagel Shop on Vanderbilt,
    -That place on Franklin I can't remember the name of, and
    -Nostrand Ave Bagels at Pacific.
  • Speaking as a non-religious, white, Jewish male who has lived in the heart of Lubavitch Crown Heights for 38 years now, I can say that I have never been harassed or even chided for not wearing anything close to the standard, Lubavitch "uniform." I routinely wear shorts wherever I go in CH during the summer months and am often working in my front garden in sweat shorts and a tank top. Absolutely never a problem. I don't doubt that the situation in Williamsburg may be different, but I've never seen the "modesty police" of W'burg or Mea Shearim in my neighborhood.

    As to bagels, though, my favorites come from a Korean-owned shop on 4th Ave and 86th St in Bay ridge. They are chewy (VERY important to me) and they have a yeasty taste. They are a bit heavier than the CH ones I've had, though.
  • I remember a while back there was a bike route put thru (or they wanted to put one) thru Williamsburg, and the Hasidic community was concerned about the dress of folks, mainly woman, who would ride around.

    In general, I think the standard of modest dress is more enforced for women. Men are expected to avert there eyes. I know of men who intentionally wear glasses with distorted vision so they don't see clearly when outside.

  • Having lived there, I can assure you that there are no separate modesty laws in Sea Gate. The neighborhood manages a lot of its own services and the beaches, but it is a part of New York City and otherwise totally controlled by New York City laws. There is a large Satmar Hasidic minority that has moved there over the last 25 or so years for a variety of reasons, but "ability to make their own laws" is not one of them!
  • Laws have the backing of fines, imprisonment and other such penalties.

    The dress code issue is a norm, with penalties that may include scorn, and (in my Satmar/Williamsburg example) possibly the refusal to sell someone a bottle of water.

    Yes, women seem to be the target of the laws. My bare male legs in shorts seem to cause either less offense, or at least less reaction.

    ....Likely a combination or my maleness and my "Irish/from the Midwest" appearance.
  • What really bothers me is the use of "guest" and "visitor." As if they own the neighborhood like I own my living room. Well I rent but same difference for this. The sidewalk is a public space open to all members of the public to enjoy. 

    It seems to be a recurring theme that certain groups believe they have exclusive dominion over parts of Crown Heights. They seem inclined to believe that they have final say over who comes, who goes and how they behave. I'm a free man in a first world democracy. I'll do as I please as long as it's legal and socially responsible. That being said I occasionally question peoples fashion sense. However, it's not my place to try and control what they wear or where they wear it. It's called life, puts on sunglasses, deal with it. 

    I know the Lubavitchs are way chiller than the Satmars. However both groups still have significant issues with sexism. Actually I'd argue that in many ways both groups have yet to enter the last century in that respect. 
  • The interesting thing about the Lubavitch is that some believe by dressing Frum (and observing other traditions and rules) the messiah will come sooner. Some want the messiah to come now, or at least within their lifetime.

    Hence, (to varying degrees) they find outsiders (and outside media) to be hazardous, because it will cause Lubavitch members to be less observant/Frum and the messiah's arrival to be delayed.

    Related reading: http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frum

    My question is "Would the individual(s) who posted the signs voluntarily adhere to the customs and dress of another faith in the event that they found themselves in a highly religious neighborhood?"

  • @whynot_31 Probably not.  In my experience different religious groups feel the right to demand total and complete respect for their religions yet at the same time refusing to give other religions the same level of respect. Also, why should they have to change their dress in a different neighborhood? They have to right to wear pretty much whatever they want as does everyone else. Yay! Hypocrisy!
  • One could argue that the area around the University of Chicago has a very distinct culture and norms, that adherents see as being the only way to success and should be abided by.

    Geek ness in dress and behavior at a Frum level.
  • Note to readers: The University of Chicago (S Hyde Park) was picked for this example because my sister is an alum and remains in the immediate neighborhood despite now having a family and being 49 years old.

    Other highly academic settings, as well the cultures that surround military bases, would also work for this illustration.

    ...the adherents wish for the culture to be maintained.
  • I would agree that they would not adhere to the dress codes of another faith. This orthodoxy is based on the belief of being the chosen. Anyone else is not chosen and therefore outside the faith.

    Ah, Hyde Park. Not too far way is Moody Bible Institute (extremely evangelical Christian college). This school is almost ultra-orthodox in the level of "frumness" that is expected of the youth who attend, especially the girls. I know in the 80s and 90s, the Cabrini Green neighborhood was dangerous. Perhaps comparable to Crown Heights. I never heard of instance where the folks who lived in the projects were expected to dress more modestly.
  • Yeah, as the hipsterfication of Crown Heights continues, I wonder how the Hasidm are going to cope with that.

    I'm actually surprised a bit that more of the community hasn't yet decamped en masse to some village upstate.
  • Yes, on Crownheights.info and other websites that serve the area, I occasionally read posts from Lubavitch young people who complain that their Lubavitch landlord is demanding rents that they can not afford.

    The posts go on to state that they feel the landlords should only rent to people who are Lubavitch and the landlords should not choose profit over "obligations to the community".

    ...Making me believe that present yuppie/hipster invasion is certainly being felt by the less fortunate/younger Lubavitches, as well as Lubavitch property owners.

    ....however, I stop short of agreeing with bkchickie's surprise, because orthodox upstate villages do not have what the rabbinic students seek: Notably, proximity to 770 EP.
  • Don't forget that the Lubavitch own a LOT of the CH properties. Not all, by any means, but a significant amount. The Rebbe told them they should not move away and, in the past 20 years since his death, mostly they haven't. I doubt they're going to start moving now. Young emissaries move all over the world, but that is an entirely different matter. There are also significant Lubavtich communities in Florida and Israel, for example, and there are areas upstate and in the Poconos where L. have summer homes, but their base is here.
    As to the modesty signs, they are mostly about the women, the Lubavitch women, not everyone else. The significance of these reminders is that they may affect a woman's marriageability or the possibility of her siblings to find a "suitable" mate. If a married woman, for example, does not cover her hair in public, has sleeves above the elbow, or wears skirts that are not appropriately modest when she sits down, her children may no longer be considered desirable spouses. If a Chinese girl, though, enters a local store, even though she does not dress in the desired way, she will still be politely served. (I know -- I've had several stay at my house over the years.) Also, I've definitely seen Lubavitch lead small tour groups, including women in pants (a big no-no) around the neighborhood. As a matter of fact, I saw one such group this morning being shown into the mikveh.
    I don't think the local hipsters have to worry too much about CH dress codes.
  • But does, as @homeowner and I assert, a Jewish female hipster/yuppie?

    For the heck of it, lets call her Rachel (not Ms Whynot's actual first name).

    Imagine a woman which 99% of adult Jews, and 85% of adult people who have lived in NYC for more than 2 years, could identify as Jewish....

    No further description offered or needed.

    According to some, she either should be Lubavitch, or IS Lubavitch and straying by her attire.

  • A Jewish female hipster/yuppie does not need to worry; no one needs to worry.
  • She and I do not.

    She buys bagels on Kingston, and shakes her head at the idea that Gothamist is a news source.

    It is entertainment.
  • Ever try Bunch o' Bagels on Troy between Carroll and Crown?  I prefer them over Kingston.
  • I have not.

    Is it safe to assume they are also closed on Saturday?
  • Yes; they are closed on Saturday.
  • ...which means they are also closed Friday after work.

    So, as a result of working M - F 9 -5, I'd have to get my weekend's bagels on Thursday evening. ....nope, not going to happen.

    But I'll try them some Sunday.
  • True.  I was thinking in place of Kingston which has the same restrictions...
  • Modesty seems to be having a media moment. 


    Brooklyn modest fashion boutique posts pic of Muslim woman wearing its clothes: http://www.refinery29.com/2014/07/71342/orthodox-hijab-controversy
  • I imagine concern about modesty spikes every summer.

    ....very few men or women show much skin in Febuary.

  • morralkan said:

    Don't forget that the Lubavitch own a LOT of the CH properties. Not all, by any means, but a significant amount. The Rebbe told them they should not move away and, in the past 20 years since his death, mostly they haven't. I doubt they're going to start moving now.



    They'll probably just start moving to and developing in places like Wingate and western Brownsville, where property is still cheap. Just like the Satmars are moving to "New Williamsburg" aka northern Bed-Stuy.

    Hopefully they get some architects from whatever Orthodox Jews live in southern Flatbush/Midwood— they put up pretty nice stuff.
  • Lubavitch is already living in Wingate, and a sprinkle or two further east towards Rockaway Parkway.  They haven't crossed Rockaway into Brownsville yet, and I'm not sure if they ever will.  There is still quite a bit of space in Wingate which is still relatively affordable and closer to their center.
  • I'm interested in seeing at what point they will decide Lincoln Park is "safe enough".

    4 years?
  • That is a very good question.  I know that my family, and many others, would love to hang out at Lincoln Terrace Park.  We currently go to Hamilton Metz Field, which doesn't have real greenery, when we don't have the energy to walk to Brower Park and want to give the kids a place to run around.  We don't find St. Johns Park too safe either.  It's a shame; there is so much space that, practically, is out of bounds.

  • This writer of this article expresses the views I alluded to above:

    "Modesty is associated with the safety of our nation and especially our soldiers. For all those who trust that a Mezuzah does make a difference, then please accept that modesty also makes a difference. (There are sources, but I am not going to explore the sources in this article.) If only until the end of the current hostilities – please cover up for the sake of our soldiers – they are combating Hamas – please combat your personal feelings and give the soldiers extra protection that a Jewish woman has the power to give."

    She continues:

    "Power Dressing with a purpose. Power Dressing with the agenda of being dressed and ready… to greet Moshiach Now."

    http://crownheights.info/op-ed/448597/op-ed-power-dressing/

    If one believes as she does, then an immodestly dressed woman is a threat to the jewish nation (which can be defined as a the Lubavitch area of Crown Heights, not just Israel), as well as those who care about it and defend it.

    Modest dress prepares one for the arrival of the messiah/Moshiach, which is believed to only happen when jews are prepared for it.


    Note that modest dress is said to have powers similar to the Mezuzah, in providing what seems akin to "protection against threats" and/or "divine grace". 


  • If one believes as she does, then an immodestly dressed woman is a threat to the jewish nation (which can be defined as a the Lubavitch area of Crown Heights, not just Israel), as well as those who care about it and defend it.

    Modest dress prepares one for the arrival of the messiah/Moshiach, which is believed to only happen when jews are prepared for it.


    @whynot_31 - I must applaud you for your ability to communicate these "foreign" concepts, in my opinion, quite accurately.

    I would revise the sentence slightly to read as follows:  "If one believes as she does, then an immodestly dressed women is a threat to the Jewish nation, wherever they may live (which can be defined as a the Lubavitch area of Crown Heights, not just Israel), as well as..."  

    My reason for removing your definition is that if one believes as she does, it applies to all Jews, everywhere, and the Jewish nation is not defined by those living in CH and Israel.  I feel that it is fair to say that all (Orthodox/observant) Jews would agree with her on the concept of modesty and its implications, and I want to highlight that most Jews live outside of CH and Israel; CH is simply where Lubavitch is based and Israel is simply a place where many Jews live.

    (Now, the strict definition of what is considered modestly dressed is up for debate.  As an exercise, walk down the heart of Jewish Williamsburg and Lubavitch CH and compare the dress.  However, the concept of modesty and its implications is, for the most part, not debated, and there are universally accepted rules such as covering knees and elbows.)

    Apologies if I'm stating the obvious...

  • The Lubavitch's belief that ALL JEWS (aka "the nation", "tribe", "race") must be prepared in order for the Messiah to arrive is central to this discussion.

    - It factors into the "excuse me, are you Jewish?" outreach that regularly happens locally, and the Chabad centers throughout the world.

    - As it relates to modesty, it is their response to accusations from outside of their community that they are oppressive to women. Succinctly, their response seems to be: "We are not here to abide by your cultural norms. Yes, we ask that Jewish women sacrifice a lot in order to prepare for the Messiah. We ask similar things from men."

    My jabbering about the Lubavitch neighborhood being similar to Israel stems from my understanding that Jewish communities are ideally pretty compact, and perhaps even distinct. I think it can best be seen in the idea that one must live close enough to synagogue to WALK to it.
  • @whynot_31 - I was under the impression that the discussion was about dress code and modesty, and not about Messiah directly.

    All observant Jews believe that everything one does is in preparation for the Messiah, so yes, it relates to modestly as well as it relates to everything else (eating kosher, praying, etc.) in the lives of an observant Jew.  Lubavitch is just more focused on outreach to fellow Jews and brings these concepts to the public eye; hence the "excuse me, are you Jewish?"

    However, the op-ed is not discussing Messiah; she is discussing the implications of being modestly dressed to protect Jewish soldiers.  She does finish off with "... to greet Moshiach now" as it is common to do so when discussing such topics, but it is not the focal point; just a reminder that this is what they are striving towards and that addressing this topic will hopefully help them get there.

    Jewish communities are more in common with each other than they are different, so I would not call them distinct for purposes of this discussion.  The distinction is as it relates to intricacies. As for Israel, it has many different communities, observant and non-observant, Jewish and non-Jewish.

    Depending on how you define a Jewish community, it can be spread out over a couple miles or even around the world, particularly if you define the community as members of the "sect,"  which many do.  A Lubavitcher living in Canada will identify themselves as part of the Lubavitch community, similarly, Satmer.  

    The idea that one must live close enough to synagogue has nothing to do with a "community."  It is simply a matter of convenience as they can't use a vehicle, and they don't want to walk too far to get to the synagogue. One community will likely have multiple synagogues if it is spread out over a large area and/or has a large population (it may be for other reasons as well, such as space constraints, cliques, etc.)


  • Whether intentional or not, such rules certainly foster community.

    I found it interesting that the writer appealed to women to dress modestly to protect the soliders presently fighting to protect Israel.

    It seemed to try to put some immediacy on it.

    In my view, the Lubavitch are always trying to put immediacy on things: They seem to believe the Rebbe's arrival and death means that the Messiah is due to come within their lifetimes, whereas other jews are far less than certain.

    Some reportedly believe that the Rebbe even WAS the messiah.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Menachem_Mendel_Schneerson

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chabad_messianism

    In believing that one's manner of dress protects soldiers actively fighting for Israel, she (and I suspect other Lubavitch) view god as being very interventionist and responsive to human actions.

    ...which seems to be an inherent part of all highly religious groups.



  • In believing that one's manner of dress protects soldiers actively fighting for Israel, she (and I suspect other Lubavitch) view god as being very interventionist and responsive to human actions.

    ...which seems to be an inherent part of all highly religious groups.






    "In believing that increasing ones observance one's manner of dress protects soldiers actively fighting for Israel, she,  and observant Jewish communities around the world, (and I suspect other Lubavitch) view god as being very interventionist and responsive to human actions..." as they believe in all circumstances.

    I'm trying to point out that this is not just a Lubavitch thing.  You are reading a Lubavitch website where a Lubavticher woman chose to focus on modesty.  Other communities have been pushing other Mitzvahs (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mitzvah) in honor of the soldiers.

    With regard to your view on Lubavitch, you are stereotyping based on those who make the most noise, but that is human nature, and I understand that.  Just trying to show another side of the same coin.
  • I'd like to believe I appreciate the other sides.

    The key word is "observant".

    The word is complicated in that one can view themselves as "observant", while others do not.

    For example, some may even view themselves as observant, while not believing in an interventionist god.

    At its worst, this lack of objective definition causes people to purport that others are not christian/jewish/muslim/etc, because they do not practice their faith in the same manner as others.

    More commonly, they are referred to as "cafeteria" catholics/jews/etc, in that they are purported to pick and choose which parts of their religion they prefer. ....they are assigned an inferior status of being "non-observant", lapsed or lost.

    Often, they are perceived as being a threat to those who practice their faith differently. It seems to play out in various religions, with various intensities.


  • This is a fascinating conversation.....and am thankful that my liberal Christian upbringing never made me feel that my clothing choices had baring on the safety of a bunch of 16 and 17 year olds carrying machine guns.  Also that I wouldn't be raptured because of my outfit.  I don't think I could have handled that.
  • I like believing that the rapture has already happened, that we were left behind, and that we should make the best of it.

    ....because it isn't going to happen again.
  • The topic of discussion is Jewish observant.  For the most part, everyone agrees on how that is defined.  I don't believe non-observant is an inferior status.  

    The  level of observance, or lack thereof, is a personal choice that one is usually proud of, and a non-observant Jew will, in most instances, describe himself as such.  

    Non-observant Jews are not a "threat" to observant Jews; although, an observant Jew may make a choice not to commingle with non-observant Jews, at least in a situation which they deem improper, in order to avoid being influenced; this is more common in ultra orthodox circles.  For instance, an observant Jew may avoid hanging out in the street, go to clubs, etc. with a non-observant Jew, but may still invite a non-observant Jew for a Shabbat meal at their home, while requesting that they dress and act as they deem appropriate.  

    All Jews, for the most part, see themselves as brothers and sisters and "love" each other despite their differences.  When I hear the word "threat," I think of something that requires defending, and it makes me think of an example where one who practices the same faith but differently is considered a threat to the others practicing the same faith as they deem appropriate and is persecuted.  Jews don't consider other Jews, despite what they believe in, as "threats."
  • I believe that all systems (cultures, faiths, etc) do what they can to perserve their integrity.

    It is counter intuitive, but accepting those who are different often preserves a group's identity; it provides an illusion of diversity and choice that many people crave.

    Successful systems limit the intensity of such exposure.
  • There's actually little love list between secular Jews, like me, and the ultra-orthodox. I May not see them as an embarrassment to the degree that my parents and grandparents, assimilated German Jews, did but the Lubuvitchers, in particular, with their obtrusive "outreach", Are a PITA, to say the least. I'm glad I live south of Empire Blvd.

  • whynot and southeast ----- 
    If you go to Lincoln Terrace Park during the day, you will sometimes find groups of young, Lubavitch boys, accompanied by their teachers, playing in the park there on the swings, slides, etc. And I have seen some Lubavitch, not a lot, sitting on benches there.  On  a nice day, i will sometimes walk through LTP on my way to my favorite local pizza place, Tony's, on Rutland Rd. It really is not scary at all; you should try using it. Of course, it may seem less threatening to me because I remember playing there as a boy 55 - 60 years ago. I'm not saying I would hang out there at night, but there's nothing scary about it during the daytime.
  • Bob, while I may not have the slightest desire to become Lubavitch, I don't have any difficulty living right in the middle of the community as I have for the past 38 years. Do I occasionally get asked if I want to lay tefillin or schuckle a lulaf and esrog? Sure, but it is extremely rare that anyone is persistent. If I get invited for Shabbos (or Pesach or Succos) dinner, they certainly do not expect me to wear anything approaching the Lubavitch "uniform." A simple yarmulke along with a shirt and pants is all that is expected. (I've been in the room with women dinner guests who have not worn a wig or headscarf either.) I've never heard ANY discussion of how modesty is important as a way of supporting the coming of the messiah either. While such topics may be discussed on COLlive or at some Lubavitcher Women's Organization education meetings, this is not something that is prevalent around here.

    Believe me, Bob, I'm as secular as one can get, but aside from disliking a few individual Lubavitch (that happens in any community), I've never found them an embarrassment. A bit of a curiosity in some ways, but that's about it. Neither my parents (my father was born in 1910) nor my grandparents (who were orthodox by default) had problems with them either, and we were all VERY much assimilated. My refugee German Jewish neighbors on Eastern Parkway didn't have a problem with them or find them embarrassing either. Not even a question of little love lost. 

    I'm sort of glad I live NORTH of Empire Blvd.
  • As discussed above, their bagels are quite good.
  • I agree with you about Bunch o' Bagels, though my favorites are still out on 4th Ave and 86th St.
  • morralkin,

    I have similar negative reactions to Jehovah's Witnesses who ring my doorbell. I have no use for any flavor of superstitious nonsense. The Lubuvitchers are just a bit closer to home
  • I mind the Jehovah's Witnesses more since they are actually ringing my doorbell and intruding on my personal space.

  • I find being bothered on the Street even more obtrusive. Also, when I stopped telling the Jehovah's Witnesses to f**k off and asked them to stop coming they actually complied. Nevertheless I think all missionaries are scum.
  • This is a Jewish neighborhood? Its a Brooklyn mash-up.
  • Well, it's certainly not as uniformly Jewish  as parts of Williamsburg and Boro Park, but it is nonetheless heavily Jewish.
  • Based on this thread, Ms Whynot and I visited Bunch O Bagels on Troy on this lovely Sunday morning.

    We provide the following report:
    The bagels were appropriately sized (ie not huge), had a good crust and were chewy. Ms. Whynot believes Bagel Hole's to be denser, and thus slightly better.

    She had a sesame bagel with cream cheese. I had a poppyseed bagel with tuna salad. We bought OJ and water and ate there.

    For those concerned about demographics and attire: During our 30 min stay, the customer base appeared 90% lubavitch. A black couple came in and ordered a bunch of bagels to go. Ms. Whynot was wearing jeans and a tshirt, as she often does. I wore shorts and a tshirt. One of the two cashiers was a black female, of the non-lubavitch variety.

    Conclusion: This bagel place would definitely be an option for us if we lived closer to it, and wanted bagels on a Sunday. However, we will likely continue to buy bagels at Prospect Perk on Saturday mornings.
  • Only 90% ?

    In any case, Crown Heights is definitely not Williamsburg and I've never felt self-conscious about dress here, nor have my visiting friends. My main complaint is about the lack of good restaurants within walking distance.
  • Ms. Whynot and I made up a sizable portion of the minority.

    BTW, a site that serves (but does not officially represent) the Lubavitch community has posted this photo today:

    image

    http://crownheights.info/crown-heights-news/450018/picture-of-the-day-tznius-sign-response/

    Seems as "valid" as the flyer one that stated this thread, and thus worth reposting.
  • I don't know that the other sign officially represented the Lubavitch community. In the past, I have seen a sign in one of the store windows along Kingston concerning appropriate attire for women. It was definitely a professionally printed sign and was obviously geared toward Lubavitch women and girls only. It quoted the rebbe, as I remember, and there was language used that only religious Jews would totally "get." I've never once seen a store sign here, à la Williamsburg, stating that proper attire was required in order to get service.

    That being said, I will take a walk along Kingston tomorrow to see if this sign is still up. I know exactly where it has to be. While there are some nuts here in Jewish CH, it is a very small percentage. It's encouraging to see signs like this. By the way, there might have been a delay in this reaction because of the summer. Lots of Lubavitch go away to the mountains for the summer.
  • I finally remembered yesterday to look for this sign on Kingston Ave. It had been removed or perhpas a heavy rain removed it. In any event, I walking from Empire Blvd up to EP along Kingston and not only was this sign gone, but there was not a single "modest dress, please" sign there either. (I can't read Hebrew, so I will admit that I would not have been able to recognize or understand such a sign. In any event, such a sign in Hebrew would clearly not have been intended for the general public and there are really very few Lubavitch women walking around in mini-skirts.)
  • "I don't know that the other sign officially represented the Lubavitch community"

    Correct. Unless you are elected, one only represents one's self.
  • When I left my house this morning, I found a couple of 5 x 7 glossy cards on my front steps and noticed that they seem to have been left on all the front steps as I walked over to Kingston Ave. I did not check any further since I had a bus to catch to my dental appointment. 

    In any case, they are in color and have the same design and text, front and back: 

    Attention
    Love & Respect
    Dear Resident, Guest, Visitor
    Please dress modestly as this is a Jewish neighborhood
    Thank you for respecting our neighborhood

    The visual includes a few clouds, two of which are in the form of hearts, seemingly set on a blue sky, with some grass along the bottom edge.

    I have to say, I find this extensive distribution of the message rather disturbing. While I am Jewish and there are a lot of Jews living here. they are certainly not the majority on most of the blocks, so how this is a "Jewish neighborhood" I don't know. Even if it were, I don't like this politely Taliban-ic message. My guess is that this is not the product of any official Lubavitch board. More likely, this was produced by some local busybodies who think they know what's best for this community.

  • @morralkan Could you scan and post the card please?
  • I'll give it a shot in the morning.
  • Sounds exactly like the original sign that started this thread. 

    From Gothamist:

    Jewish sign
    Jewish sign 2
  • Holy macaroni, can this lead to a lawsuit? This seems over the top by putting these on personal property and an infringement of some sort.
  • I think a response that involves a "bathing suit encouraged" block party would be more effective.

    I'd use the term Daisy Dukes Outfits, but I am not sure it is universally understood.
  • @Esperanza This is America you can sue anybody for anything. How successful your lawsuit will be is an entirely different matter.  I doubt a lawsuit over this would enjoy much success. 
  • @morralkan, your guess that this is the work of some local busybodies is accurate. Many, many members of the observant Jewish community are as annoyed about these posters and cards as you are (rightly so) and perhaps most concerned about the negative impression it can make on newcomers to the neighborhood. The average observant Jew you pass on the street does NOT stand behind this.  
  • morralkan said:

    When I left my house this morning, I found a couple of 5 x 7 glossy cards on my front steps and noticed that they seem to have been left on all the front steps as I walked over to Kingston Ave. I did not check any further since I had a bus to catch to my dental appointment. 


    In any case, they are in color and have the same design and text, front and back: 

    Attention
    Love & Respect
    Dear Resident, Guest, Visitor
    Please dress modestly as this is a Jewish neighborhood
    Thank you for respecting our neighborhood

    The visual includes a few clouds, two of which are in the form of hearts, seemingly set on a blue sky, with some grass along the bottom edge.

    I have to say, I find this extensive distribution of the message rather disturbing. While I am Jewish and there are a lot of Jews living here. they are certainly not the majority on most of the blocks, so how this is a "Jewish neighborhood" I don't know. Even if it were, I don't like this politely Taliban-ic message. My guess is that this is not the product of any official Lubavitch board. More likely, this was produced by some local busybodies who think they know what's best for this community.





    I had this random though last night while reading this thread. What if this is just some prank, offline trolling, to pull peoples chain, get both sides worked up? Cause a little drama in an already turbulent nabe?
  • I bet the odds are good that whoever is responsible for these signs is also among the biggest pervs in the community.
  • dl said:

    @morralkan, your guess that this is the work of some local busybodies is accurate. Many, many members of the observant Jewish community are as annoyed about these posters and cards as you are (rightly so) and perhaps most concerned about the negative impression it can make on newcomers to the neighborhood. The average observant Jew you pass on the street does NOT stand behind this.  



    Agree.

  • "I had this random though last night while reading this thread. What if this is just some prank, offline trolling, to pull peoples chain, get both sides worked up? Cause a little drama in an already turbulent nabe? "

    Mamacita-
    That is certainly possible. So far, this person has probably spent less than $25 on color copies.

    The thing about responding to it (my half witted block party idea) is that the attendees would be unfortunately punishing the entire community for the actions of a very few.

    After all, most of us don't look that great in bathing suits.
  • Crown Heights as a place to discover and define yourself, as young (presumably orthodox) jew:

    http://www.tabletmag.com/scroll/184380/the-road-to-the-new-jerusalem

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