Ancient postcard image believed to be the same building in which the inscription was found.

SATIRE: Archeologists Ask Community’s Help Decoding Ancient Text Discovered Near Old Parksville

In February of 3023, archeologists sifting through the grounds of what is believed to have been an old campground near Old Parksville in Upstate New York struck paydirt, uncovering a paved courtyard surrounded by three buildings.

“We are jumping around in excitement,” archeological assistant Pitzgerald Bluberbutt sent in a message to 143 different news outlets, newspapers, newsletters, and anyone else who would listen. “The find will finally make the area of Old Parksville what it never was before, an interesting place to visit!”

While two of the discovered buildings are believed to be crumbling wooden structures haunted with the souls of thousands of young boys who lost their voices screaming, a third building, confusingly intact after so many years, was made of cement blocks and is believed to have housed an indoor pool.

“It’s the BETH!” slurred Bluberbutt, who was found heavily intoxicated in celebration following the find. But the greatest find remains an inscription found on the wall of the building’s semi-private ancient lavatory.

“It’s that that makes the find so interesting,” Bluberbutt was eventually able to point out. “It was written by a person in what we believe was a blue ballpoint pen. But it must have baffled everyone.”

In an exclusive look at the inscription, we can confirm that it is indeed ancient Hebrew, but with the multitudes of notes surrounding and presumably explaining it, we can extrapolate that it must have been a real mystery for everyone.

In an effort to recreate this worthwhile find, we have included a copy and translation of the ancient text below:

להבין עניין בית הכסא עיגול בינוני על רגל אחת אם יש מים חייב ברכה רבי שילשול אומר אפילו בלי מים חייב ברכה נוספת. צריכא כח יתרא ברכת הגומל מחויבת

To understand the concept of house of chair, medium circle on one leg. If there is water, a blessing is necessary. Rabbi Shilshul says, even without water another blessing is necessary. If extra power is required, Birchas Hagomel is required.

A request for the readers has been made to please expound on the inscription, providing high-quality commentary to help others understand this potent text.

(Place your commentary in the comment section below. Extra points if you give Rashi, Tosfos, or Mefarshim answers. The best commentary comment will be chosen by Comedy Influencer Mendy Pellin to win a $100 gift card. Don’t forget to put your email address so we can reach out to you as the winner!)

by AH

להבין עניין בית – poor flames in the house. (Rashi: flames are called “poor” because they’re never satisfied, as Mishlei (30:16) says, ואש לא אמרה הון, fire never says it has enough. Tosafos: עניין is related to ענה, as in וענית ואמרת, so it means “the flames speak loudly to the house.”)
הכסא עיגול – time (Rashi: compare בכסה ליום חגנו and ליום הכסא יבוא ביתו) is a circle. [Thus, the following events will repeat over and over in history.]
בינוני על רגל אחת אם – the middle on one of his mother’s feet (Rashi: referring to the story of R. Tarfon supporting his mother’s foot, and the chachamim saying that he hasn’t reached even the middle – בינוני – of kibbud av v’em)
יש מים חייב ברכה – there is water that requires a bracha (Tosafos: only when drinking because one is thirsty; see Berachos 45a and Tosafos there). Maharsha sees this as alluding to the story with R’ Yishmael’s mother and the water for washing his feet that she wanted to drink, mentioned in the Yerushalmi (Peah 1:1) immediately after the story of R’ Tarfon and his mother.
רבי שילשול אומר – Rabbi Shilshul says (Rabbeinu Chananel brings a tradition from the Geonim that this wasn’t his real name, but that he was so called because sometimes he davened with Poylishe chassidim in “shil” and other times with Lubavitchers in “shul”):
אפילו בלי מים חייב – even if he is guilty of not providing water [for his parents], or according to Maharsha, of not letting his mother drink the water, as in the above story,
ברכה נוספת – there is an extra bracha (for honoring his parents in other ways).
צריכא כח יתרא – But it requires the strength of Yisra (a brother-in-law of David, mentioned in Shmuel Beis 17:25),
ברכת הגומל מחויב – and he is required to say a bracha for being weaned (Rashi: as in ויגדל הילד ויגמל, the child grew and was weaned).

Be the first to comment!

The comment must be no longer than 400 characters 0/400