Isaac had not enjoyed the week leading up to his nephew Ezra’s Bar Mitzvah. A bad sinus infection, his dismissal from the insurance firm where he had worked for the past few years, and the discovery that his divorce lawyer had been getting off with his ex-wife had amounted to a veritable clusterfuck that was systematically tearing apart his life. That the week had ended in a seemingly interminable plane ride to Evanston, IL, during which he twice had to sneak off to the particularly pungent bathroom for some muffled weeping, had certainly not improved things in the slightest. Upon meeting him at the airport, his brother Abe had droned on with a characteristic smugness, giving Isaac a full account of his work at a brutally uninteresting financial advisory firm and Ezra’s painstaking preparation for “manhood,” a word that he ritualistically repeated until he sounded suspiciously like Isaac’s ex-wife. Now there was nothing left for Isaac to do but make clumsy attempts to recline in the spartan, uncomfortable pews and visualize Ezra’s recitation of the story of David and Bathsheba, certainly the most titillating of all Torah portions.
“Oh yes, Bathsheba,” Isaac thought to himself, “I have sent your husband away to die and now you will lie with me, the king of Israel and Judah.”
In the next pew over, sat Ester, the zaftig local Hebrew teacher, who had begun to take vested interest in Isaac’s bulging dress pants. Ester had drank a couple too many bottles of Manischewitz on the car ride over, still unable to get over the good news of her sister’s engagement to a respectable man who had the unbeatable combination of a distinguished jawbone and a BMW. Extending her neck and darting her bloodshot eyes about like a meerkat, she scanned the synagogue for anyone not minding their own business, than tentatively lay her hand on Isaac’s crotch. Their eyes met in an awkward tempest of confused passion.
As Ezra explained what his torah portion meant to him, something about the preeminence of family and academic integrity, Isaac and Ester quietly stole off, one at a time, to the synagogue’s most remote handicapped bathroom. Averting eye contact, Isaac passionately threw off his yarmulke, revealing his balding crown, then wiggled out of his pants. She violently burst forth from her dress, which was perhaps a size or two too small, and thrust herself upon him like a tigress. They fell to the floor and began humping with a cheerful exuberance. She kept her socks on out of insecurities about her toes, which were webbed like a frog’s. He took note of the floor, certainly the most hygienic of any bathroom in the county, a true testament to the piousness of the synagogue’s community and the quiet dignity of the disabled. It was not the best climax of Isaac’s life, but it would, in the scheme of things, turn out to be his last.
Meanwhile, a giant cardinal flew over Brooklyn and descended at the doorstep of Morton and Isabelle Roth. With great effort it expelled a large, speckled egg from its rear. The mystified Roth couple took the egg into their abode and protected it. Eight weeks later, a beautiful boychild emerged from his shell. The couple was amazed, overjoyed, and relieved. They could now experience the joys of parenthood without spoiling the purity and moral cleanliness of their marital bed, which would indeed remain preserved by the Roth’s unconsummated union.