Mahmoud and Mrs. P: Reflections on Armageddon

With all the talk and speculation about a nuclear Iran, it is impossible, living in Israel – especially in the centre of Tel Aviv (the intersection of the lines forming the “X” on Ahmadinejad’s map is widely believed to be Melchett) – not to ponder the possible, dreaded scenarios.

No one here appears to be any the wiser about the likelihood, or the timing, of an Israeli attack on Iran. And those who are certainly don’t talk about it. What I did, however, hear about a year ago – from a journalist who claims to “know people” in “defence circles” – is the following:

The US State Department has resolved that it is not in America’s interests to spearhead, participate in, or even to be seen to be behind, an attack on Iran. It prefers to leave the Israelis and Iranians to their own devices, to fight matters out – to the death, if necessary – between themselves (ironically, the quintessentially Jewish “don’t get involved” approach).

On learning of this decision, Israel – in order to force America’s hand and deter it from a policy of isolationism – informed the US that, if Israel were to suffer an obliterative (could there be any other for a country of this size?) nuclear attack, it would use its nuclear-armed submarines to take the rest of the world down with it.

Farfetched, I know, but it does possess a certain cold logic. And, if Iran were to strike first, part of me certainly would want Israel to at least take out all of those enemies that have made our lives so difficult for the past sixty-odd years.

My guess is that the reality will be somewhat of an anticlimax. On turning on Sky News, on waking up on one seemingly ordinary morning, we will be greeted with the news that the deed has been done: Israel and/or the US has bombed Iran.

But then it’ll be “nappy time”: Will Iran still have the capability to return the favour? Would there be a warning? And, if so, how much?

Not living in a modern building, my apartment does not have a mamad (reinforced room). And, despite having lived on Melchett during the Second Lebanon War, I have absolutely no idea where the nearest communal shelter is.

Anyway, given a few minutes or thirty, I would still choose to do the same thing . . . and it does not entail squeezing into a dark, dank monolith with scores of platzing Israelis.

Being single, however, the big question would be “With whom?” Pardon the egocentrism, but,  if the worst were to happen, it should at least be at a time when I am in a relationship. I mean imagine having to work through lists of past dates, flings and girlfriends in the knowledge that there is a nuclear missile on its inexorable way.

Although at least, in the latter scenario, there would be no need to pretend . . . you know, that you really do love them, that you miss them, or just really want to catch up. You’d just scream “Get yer arse over here, girl . . . and quick! And NO undies!”

And, if no one were available, well . . . it would just have to be Mrs. Palmer and her five lovely daughters. From one wanker – a dickhead with a warhead – to another.

But that would be a depressing final act, and – to quote Lenny again – really “no way to say goodbye”.

No way to say goodbye: yesterday, Allenby Street, on the way to the shuk

No way to say goodbye (Allenby, yesterday morning, on the way to the shuk)


26 responses to “Mahmoud and Mrs. P: Reflections on Armageddon

  1. Daniel Marks

    During the Gulf Wars, Maale Adumim was an interesting place to live, not that it isn’t generally, as all of a sudden all the friends and family from the center of Israel who usually have excellent excuses not to visit were popping in and even staying the night.

    It reached the point, during the second Gulf War that an acquaintance of our elder daughter, from Haifa, spent almost a week in the spare room even though Dina herself was trekking in the North. I remember that Dina did Maslul Yisrael that summer from Kiryat Shemona to somewhere in the south. She called one night to say they (her and friends) had slept in a moshav which was bombed by Katyusha rockets. I told her to go south, but not too south so she wouldn’t get hit by Kassams instead.

    I say all this because I imagine that if the likelihood of conflict grows, something not looking too likely at present, everyone is welcome. Early bookings are recommended.

  2. Ellis Feigenbaum

    Daniel, if the quasi Jew from Persia starts a nuclear war, the invitation to finish your scotch will be accepted, I will also bring my own bottles to share amongst the faithful and not so faithful.

  3. Daniel Marks

    It will be a pleasure to accomodate a real legend.

    In such an event I’ll tell my neighbors to hide their daughters away.

  4. Your daughter’s friend . . . almost a week in the spare room . . . I thought that was going somewhere, you tease!

  5. Daniel Marks

    My daughter’s friend had longish blond hair and blue eyes.

    His name was Amichai.

  6. It’s not a crime, Daniel – whatever Shuli says – and you’ve got nothing to be ashamed about.

    So, how many nights did you wait before that furtive knock on the bedroom door?

  7. Ellis Feigenbaum

    I would imagine Daniel only furtively knocked in order to awaken the aforementioned young man, for Hashkomo.

  8. Mike, I’m not gay.

    I used to contribute to Moezet Yesha until I heard of their plans to hire buses to bring out demonstrators against the Jerusalem Gay Parade.

    I phoned to cancel and explained my reason. I reasoned that opposing homosexuality was not their mandate and, anyway, I saw no reason to have all the gays hating us too. They told me that Rav Mordechai Elyahu had made the decision, I answered that in that case he could fund them instead of me.

    I remember as kids the words, “puff” “queer” “bent” etc were used to describe friend and foe alike, even then I was unable to see the funny side of a sexual preference.

    In my ill-spent youth I went with friends to gay pubs etc. They often had great cabaret acts.

    However, Eli is spot on, although it was, in fact, the often referenced 6:30 minyan where any morning you’ll find me the totally straight but equally antihomophobic gabay loyally performing his duties.

    Hol Hamoed is 7:00 and there’s a great shiur afterwards.

  9. I’d love to come, but I have coffee on Rothschild at 7:00. And it’s far more interesting than shachris. This morning, for instance, the kiosk crew discussed the release of Gilad Shalit. I am actually against releasing 400+ prisoners – many with blood on their hands – for one soldier . . . an opinion which didn’t make me too popular this morning. Perhaps a discussion for Twatter (see my earlier post on the subject).

    Back to Mahmoud, I expect that most readers of melchett mike will have now heard the big news, published yesterday . . .

  10. You mean “With whom?”
    I’m not sure whether this is a reflection on your love life or your schooling.

  11. Daniel Marks

    What is Anna referring to? Is she correcting someone? What is she talking about?

    Clearly, she is a very mysterious lady.

  12. Nick Kopaloff

    If you were simply able to adapt your judicious quote-thieving Googling skills as alleged by Ellis, you would know that a Control-F (and typing) “with who”, would direct you to the source of the error raised by the mysterious Anna, who may well be my grammatically conscientious cousin, and whom, conditionally, I love dearly.

  13. Oh Anna, you are cruel! As you well know, I didn’t go to school (well, none worthy of the name). I is self-taught.

    Thank you for pointing out my oversight (which has been rectified), though the “who/whom” thing does cause me problems. I tried learning myself via the Internet, but as soon as I saw mention of “subject and object pronouns”, I gave up!

    Anyway, honoured to have a proper ejucated Norf London Collegiate reader . . . and hope you were not too shocked by my reference to Mrs. P! 😉

  14. No offence taken. I think Mrs P taught the pink oboe – how different our schoolings were.

    FYI: A direct quote from Christopher Hitchens: “you can take the girl out of Hendon, but you can never take Hendon out of the girl.” I know he’s a fan of the tribe.

  15. Nick Kopaloff

    I like your cutting one-liners and would love to hear more of the same.

    Sorry I mistook you for my famed cousin. However, her puritanical education did not include tuition on the instrument to which you refer.

  16. Quite, Nick.

    Anna, what exactly is the “pink oboe”?

    You’ve got all the pervs going!

  17. Ellis Feigenbaum

    Hmm Mike really for someone who prides himself on his Englishness, not recognizing a pearl from the uncrowned king of British humour Peter Cook is almost sacrilege.

  18. Anna, I’m speechless . . .

  19. Ellis Feigenbaum

    Hang on a tick, I think the mysrerious Anna might actually be my cousin, in which case I have been nicked.

  20. Why, Ellis . . . do you generally get your cousins to “play” your “oboe”?!

  21. Daniel Marks

    Many pages of this excellent blog seem to have what could be called a main theme and a sub-theme. Examples are numerous, but postings in the Osher Baddiel pages also discussed haredi Judaism in general, the page on the tragic, still unsolved, gay murders also touched on Reform Judaism, and the list goes on and on.

    Interestingly this page seems to be the exception and for the first time we must note that the main theme has been all but completely ignored: “What would you do in your last minutes if there was a Persian nuke making its way to your house?”

    The sub-theme is of course mast*rbation. I leave the letter “u” out to protect the modesty of this blog, it being replaced by an asterisk, the most minuscule of literary bikinis. We will never say the word but will blissfully use countless euphemisms – Mrs. Palmer and her five lovely daughters” is just one of them. I was unacquainted with the lady but Kopaloff was, very much so, and was good enough to decipher her for me. Koplaoff’s explanation was as lucid as it was graphic, leaving nobody in doubt that he possesses considerable hands-on experience in such matters.

    Historically, Koplaloff has always provided me with a wealth of first-hand information regarding the delights of auto gratification. In fact, Nick was the first to alert me, during early adolescence, to the possibility of what I paraphrase W Allen as having described as a meaningful, long-term, sexual relationship with the one you love most in the world.

    It should thus come as no surprise to all those who know and love Nick, and after all to know him is to love him, that when faced with the dilemma of either analyzing the geo-political implications to the Middle-East of the West’s seeming inability to prevent the Islamic Republic of Iran acquiring a strategic nuclear option or just making a few lewd comments to a lady he has never met, about his second favorite hobby, no toss-up was required and the latter won hands down.

    PS How kind of his right hand man Ellis to lend a hand too.

  22. Ellis Feigenbaum

    To the best of my knowledge and without prejudice, none of my cousins play the oboe.
    Daniel, I have made it clear that in the event of nuclear holocaust imposed upon us by the chicken legged demon from the east, I shall choose to get pissed with you as oppossed to ma*s*ur*ing with Mike. (notice the 3 asterix as a sign of false modesty)
    Goldman is sadly absent on the subject of wa*k*rs.
    Nick was always destined to be a leader of the free world. Destined to lead us all in in the knowledge of the pink oboe.
    By the way, Nick is indeed deserving of congratulations as a teacher. All of his pupils in all age ranges qualified for chess championship finals.
    Kudos to a real teacher.

  23. Daniel, I note with interest – and no little amusement – your conclusion that the “sub-theme” of my above post is auto-eroticism, when in fact that is merely the sub-sub-theme . . . the sub-theme clearly being f*cking.

    May we conclude that you have been married for too long to recall the precise nature of the latter pastime?!

    I further note, this time with concern, that even with the three asterisks (Asterix is the character from the comics) he chooses to employ, Ellis cannot correctly spell “masturbation”.

  24. Ellis Feigenbaum

    Whether it be the theme, the sub theme or the behind the theme, we have all clearly lost the plot.

    And Asterix played with his Obelisk, now what better connection could you get?

  25. If Osher came back in now, he couldn’t fail to be impressed by the improvement in the level of discussion.

  26. Daniel Marks

    “Ellis cannot correctly spell masturbation.”

    A simple exercise in sentence completion:

    He may not be able to spell it ……………………..

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