The Jewish Holiday Season + 5 Common Czech Mistakes in English

Guess what? Your calendar is wrong. It’s actually the year 5777. Happy (Belated) Jewish New Year! !שנה טובה ומתוקה

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I wanted to get this post in before a week has passed since Rosh Hashana and also because Yom Kippur begins tonight. What does this mean, you ask?

As I spoke about in my classes, the Jewish New Year is Rosh Hashana, or “head of the year.” Because the Jewish calendar is based on the moon, the date of holidays changes in the Gregorian calendar and seems to be different every year. This year it occurred from Oct 2-4.

Rosh Hashana Fast Facts:

The theme at the holiday’s center is to invite sweetness for the new year.

We say shana tova (u’metuka), which means a good (and sweet) year.

Jews have a number of important traditions on Rosh Hashana, including:

-blowing the shofara ram’s horn, in the synagogue

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-throwing bread to ducks/geese to symbolically transfer sins

-eating challah bread and dipping apples in honey

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*

After Rosh Hashana comes Yom Kippur, officially translated as the Day of Atonement. This means you apologize for and try to fix things you regret. It is the most important holiday of the Jewish year, when we try to clear our consciences and be new, better people in the New Year. This year it is Oct 11-12.

Yom Kippur Fast Facts:

This is holiest day of the Jewish year. Most Jews go to temple or synagogue.

This is a rest (odpočivat) and fast (půst) day. We cannot work, eat, drink water, shower, or put on makeup for 25 hours. Why? We should be thinking only about God and improving ourselves. For religious Jews, and Jews in all of Israel, this means no driving, either! (In Israel, the police will stop you.)

-However, if you are very old, very young, pregnant, or it is life or death, you are allowed to eat and drink.

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According to Judaica-Guide, “Yom Kippur is the ‘dead-line’ for changing one’s ways and being forgiven for bad deeds.” We ask God to write our name in His “Book of Life,” which means we will live through the next year, and when it’s sealed after the holiday ends, it means we should have health, happiness, love…

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Now it’s time for…

Five Common Czech Mistakes in English

Fix these easy mistakes for better grammar, fast!

1.

A gerund (thinking, meeting, walking) should never end with K!

2.

“Learn” and “teach,” while they sound similar in Czech, are totally different things. This mistake is made by even the best Czech speakers of English. Teachers teach, students learn. Nobody learns you something – they teach you, or you teach yourself.

3.

While we’re at it, remember that “borrow” and “lend” are also different. I lend a pen to my friend, and my friend borrows the pen from me. The word for “borrow” in Czech is longer than “lend,” just like in English – use it to help you remember!

4.

We don’t “take care about” someone or something. We “take care of” someone or something.

5.

You only say “Nice to meet you” when it is the first time you meet someone. And we usually don’t use “meet” the same way in English- you can “meet” your friends in the coffee shop only if you decided earlier to meet there. But you don’t “meet” a coffee shop, you found, or you know about a coffee shop.

Stay tuned for more next time…

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Categories Czenglish, Jewish

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