I was thinking about a conversation I had last night about the 'mean' steroetype that Jews have. I was told that there is a stereotype around Gujuratis (Indian) that they are 'good at business'. V said she's proud of it, the stereotype and the truth it has for her in her case. I have also had Scottish people tell me they are 'similar to Jews (ie me)' coz they're a bit frugal too.

This has always made me uncomfortable and I realise why. The Scottish stereotype and the Gujurati one are ones that people are proud of. They are proud at being 'good at business' or 'good with money' and assume Jewish people would be proud as well. But I have never related to the stereotype. It is imposed from the outside and not one that Jews have about ourselves. It was a way of persecuting Jews and so we don't identify with it. There are other stereotypes which Jews claim to be true, or part of the truth - but not that one... Actually for me, even when a person is admiring the quality, I can almost see them with rocks in hand, ready to throw. I know the myth is much more a source of envy than admiration.

Had a dinner party conversation which ranged over topics and landed on Jewishness. I was asked direct questions and felt happy answering them. Eventhough some of the questions seemed kind of blunt, I know that the questioner was asking with an openness and there was no malice in it. It's a funny thing about questions. I know I ask questions that are direct when I want to know about another person's culture. I believe it is better to ask than to just assume an answer but it's still kind of wierd being asked directly myself.

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