Tuesday, September 30, 2014 Tishri 6, 5775

Now Repeat After Me ...

October 22, 2009 By:
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Joel Shoulson

Hear about the guy who had one circumcision after another?

Finally, he caved, knock-kneed; they got it ... rite!

Joel Shoulson understands his pain; the Main Line resident is, after all, one of the premier and in-demand mohels in the region, has been for decades.

But that titillating title of "Circumcise Me" -- starring Yisrael Campbell with the director's cut going to Matthew Kalman -- as well as the upcoming off-Broadway show ... it all has a squeamish squirt of queasiness to it.

Three times the charm? Or is that chain saw?

So, Mohel Joel, one question:

Can you top this?

"I have had cases where there have been multiple circumcisions, anywhere in age from a teen to a 72-year-old man."

Oooh, that hurts. No, not really, says the mohel, who claims to have pioneered the use of anaesthetic over the years he's been doing the procedure, with way-beyond-the-crib age "recipients not even aware of it."

As for those 8-day-old males whose whine of choice has nothing to do with the grape juice given them as they're introduced to a quick cut -- talk about your baby-BOOM!: "That's painless, too; of course, people don't remember" the experience.

"I count on that," he laughs, having performed countless rites over the years.

Is there a major reason one would forego foreskin ... repeatedly?

"For conversion ... for wanting to become Jewish ... some are looking for a root, others to change their roots."

The mohel roots them on, taking pride in his handiwork and when the basic reason for the multiple choice is a man's "pursuit of spirituality and taking another path in life."

Talk about different paths; Shoulson's got to hit the road.

"I have [a circumcision] to officiate at 5 p.m.," he says packing up his bris kit one more time.

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