The baby leaves of Israel.

Today’s Hebrew lesson: עלי בייבי

Not a hard term to learn in Hebrew. It means ‘baby leaves’ – you know, those tiny bits of greenery you put in salad that cost more than the other vegetables combined?

It’s also a term I made up for a certain type of middle-aged Israeli woman – you know the one. She has spiky dyed-red hair, her tight pants are sitting just slightly too high and her shirt is cut more than slightly too low. There are definitely sequins across her chest and they may spell a misleading English word that starts with an ‘S’ and ends with ‘exy.’ She could be high-pitched and whiny or she might sport the smoker’s voice.

And most of all… You see her at the supermarket. She is standing near you, in the produce aisle. She picks up a plastic bag of something; pretty soon you know exactly what it contains.

“…איזה יופי! אוי, מוטי, בוא תראה – עלי ביייייייבי”

That’s right. She just עלי בייבי‘d you.

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