Friday, August 22, 2014 Av 26, 5774

Dear Miriam,

I have a bris to go to next week, and I'm not sure what an appropriate gift is for the occasion.  Should I give money?  If so, how much, and if not, what do I give instead?

Signed,
Milah Moolah

Dear Moolah,

A bris, or brit milah, is the ritual circumcision for a Jewish baby boy that takes place on the eighth day of life. It's also an opportunity for family and friends to meet the baby, share a celebratory meal and, yes, bring gifts. But just because it's a bris, the gift doesn't need to be any different from any other...

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Dear Miriam,

I met a great guy online, and we recently went on our first date. His profile didn't specify his religion or profession, so I asked him about that early on in the date. Turns out, he's studying to be Christian clergy. We still had a good time, but I want to have a Jewish home, and I feel like his career path is a deal breaker. Also, don't you think he should have been upfront about this in his profile? He's willing to give "us" a shot, but I'm not sure that I am. In case it matters, I'm not planning to have kids regardless of who I end up with.

Signed,...

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Dear Miriam,

You know that episode of "How I Met Your Mother," where Katie Holmes comes to the Halloween party dressed as "The Slutty Pumpkin?" Is there a Purim equivalent?

Signed,
Hottie Hamentaschen

Dear Hottie,

Purim is certainly an opportunity to do things out of the ordinary, in a turn-the-world-upside-down-can't-tell-blessed-Mordecai-from-cursed-Haman kind of way, including how we dress. While I don't think that the Halloween trend of making every possible costume into a "slutty" version of itself has fully carried over into Purim, you...

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