Why is this night different from all other nights?


Originally uploaded by The White House

Last night started the Jewish holiday of Passover and we headed over to my parents’ house for a shortened and highly modified seder with four kids (two were mine and two were my newest cousins) and a good friend and an Uncle and an Aunt and grandparents and a lovely wife and me (of course). We read the four questions and I forced the youngest of the last generation (Uncle Roger) to read them with me (since I am the youngest who could read Hebrew). We talked about plagues and strange tasting wine. We ate two flavors of gefilte fish and I ended up with three pieces somehow (possibly due to a daughter’s questioning of the taste). Fun was had all around and lots of pictures were taken.
But the photo above is obviously not from our ordered meal (the president just couldn’t make it to our house this year). Starting in 2008, Obama has been attending Seders with his staff and in 2009 he began a new tradition of a traditional Passover meal in the White House. The New York Times has the full scoop, but the short version is: the President attends a seder not with dignitaries, but with all Jewish members of his staff and the first family (his daughters even read the four questions). The pic above is taken from the official White House Flickr feed. If you look closely at the Haggadahs in the hands of the attendees you will see a simple book that is actually the same one Mandy and I used for our small seder in New Jersey while living up there so I could work in Philadelphia after Katrina.
Happy Chag and Chag Sameach!

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