Matzav Inbox: Post-Pesach Pizza Frenzy

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By Shmuel Miskin, Matzav.com

Now that the dust has settled following another wonderful Yom Tov of Pesach, I’d like to share my thoughts on what has become a common post-Pesach practice in many areas. I know that my words will likely be greeted with nods of the head from those above the age of 50 and waves of the hand or looks of annoyance from those younger, but so be it.

The issue? The post-Pesach pizza frenzy. I just don’t get it. The second Yom Tov is over, lines are out the door at local pizzerias in communities nationwide. Are we so desperate for a slice of this Italian delicacy? Do our tummies so desperately need a slice of pizza because we are absolutely starving after subsisting on a chometz-free diet for eight-and-a-half days?

I am not coming purely from a hashkafah standpoint. Surely the readers here can share their own hashkafic viewpoints on the post-Pesach pizza craze. Taavas achilah, overcoming one’s urges, etc.

I am asking from a practical standpoint: What’s the rush? What will happen if we wait until the next day to down our first slice of post-Pesach pizza?

Then there’s my favorite pet peeve: I meet a fellow in a local supermarket where arrangements are made so that one does not need to rely on a hetter mechirah after Pesach. He stocks up on enough noodles until the summer, he buys countless items so that he does not have to rely on the hetter mechirah of other stores….but a half hour later he’s buying pizza from the local pizza store! (Lest you argue that this does not constitute relying on a hetter mechirah, I verified that in that particular store, they make their dough before Yom Tov and sell the actual dough. I should note that there are indeed stores which specifically do not sell the dough, but make their dough after Yom Tov, in which case there is no issue of relying on hetter mechirah.)

I know that families generally work hard over cleaning up after Yom Tov and a nice fresh slice of pizza is a welcome sight and a gastronomical delight. I am not here to count calories or become the food hashkafah police. But it seems to have reached a level of obsession, where, on Pesach itself, during the last Yom Tov seudos, people are already making arrangements so that they can get to the pizza store in the fastest and most strategic way to ensure that they have their coveted pizza as soon as humanly possible. This obsession has gone overboard.

I happen to know an individual – a regular, normal person – who shared with me that one of the things he has been mekabel on himself – to practice overcoming his natural urges – is to refrain from eating pizza on Motzoei Pesach. This gentleman, who is a regular, normal guy, related that throughout the year, he is rarely able to demonstrate strength of character or an ability to overcome his yeitzer. One time a year, he said, when everyone is running to the pizza store, he accepted upon himself bedavka not to go and buy pizza. He wants to demonstrate to himself that he can be above the frenzy and the tumult.

I’ve shared some thoughts. I’d like to read yours. Maybe I am just old fashioned or overly critical. But, like I said, in my eyes, the tomato sauce and cheese can wait another day.

I’d like to also add, by the way, that the stores did a terrible job providing pizza for those who do eat pizza on Motzoei Pesach. The lines were forever, the wait was hours-long, and the pizza was horrible. Bad job all around.

{Shmuel Miskin-Matzav.com Newscenter}


36 COMMENTS

  1. The Vilna Gaon made havdala after Pesach on – beer!
    To show he separated himself from it because Hashem told him not to… and now Hashem lets him so he would partake…. a different hashkafa but thats the Gaon….

    • I was never a big fan of pizza. Not for spiritual reasons, but for practical reasons. It always causes me heartburn and upset stomach. Then comes the whole shaila if you have to wash or not. Are you being kovaiya a seudah? Having one slice or two slices? If one slice, what about garlic nuts or french fries?

  2. Its actually brought down(dont remember where) that there in an inyan to make havdalah on beer on motzai pesach to show that really we wanted to eat chometz during pesach and only refrained from doing so because the torah says not to. I know chasuva rabonim that are noheg this way. A similar reasoning can apply to pizza as well and yes specifically at night right after pesach is over is when we should be eating pizza!

    • Foistly, the flour used for pizza dough is chometz therefore that also needs to be sold.also the mechira is not a heter it simply belongs to the goy therefore you may use the chomets after it is bought back.

  3. What a terrible way to speak about my brothers and sisters! These same heilige yidden just hours before adhered to dikdukah shel halachah and sacred minhagim with unbelievable mesirus nefesh! And we have the chutzpah to criticize them? And for what? Was any halachah or minhag compromised?
    I know that the Ribbono Shel Olam has so much nachas from us. And that’s all that matters.

  4. How does an innocuous treat become a minhag become a halacha? This has reached the proportions of “halacha le’Moshe Mi Sinai”. When tanur rishon goes for $700+ (for the mitzvah of tzedakah, of course ;-)), then lines around the corner don’t seem so out of place. At my pizza store we had images of the luchos baked into the pizza, so it was a hachonah for Shavous (cheese and all).

  5. From my days as a Rabbinical Coordinator in the Kashrus field have a different perspective. 1 not yet frum pizza shop owner insisted to me that it’s impossible to have pizza prepared in such a time frame. I pushed him for a while since that’s a serious accusation and he finally said he figured out how it can be done however he insisted that he’d never serve such pizza. He claimed that they’d have to use much more yeast and the product wouldn’t taste nearly as good and it might wreak havoc to the gastro track. That’s IF no halacha corners are cut. The Vaad of Queens has a decades old policy of not allowing any bakery, pizza shop etc to open Motzei Pesach before 12AM. This should be a no brainer for any kashrus agency.

  6. Fantastic news!

    Here to answer your questions!

    But first worth noting : “I just don’t get it.” Nu so you don’t get it, move on and live your life. Try not to worry about every narishkeit . But since you asked…

    “Are we so desperate for a slice of this Italian delicacy?”
    who is “we” you aren’t. Others are. Others go just for the “shtick”

    ” Do our tummies so desperately need a slice of pizza because we are absolutely starving after subsisting on a chometz-free diet for eight-and-a-half days?”
    Who is “our” ? Your’s isnt. Others’ are Others go just for the “shtick”

    .

    “What’s the rush? ”
    They miss it

    “What will happen if we wait until the next day to down our first slice of post-Pesach pizza?”
    They will miss it longer, nothing will happen.

    “Then there’s my favorite pet peeve: I meet a fellow in a local supermarket where arrangements are made so that one does not need to rely on a hetter mechirah after Pesach. He stocks up on enough noodles until the summer, he buys countless items so that he does not have to rely on the hetter mechirah of other stores….but a half hour later he’s buying pizza from the local pizza store! (Lest you argue that this does not constitute relying on a hetter mechirah, I verified that in that particular store, they make their dough before Yom Tov and sell the actual dough.”

    Your friend is very ver yconfused. What does he do with his bought noodles? Doesnt he sell it too? (I hope he does )

    “I should note that there are indeed stores which specifically do not sell the dough, but make their dough after Yom Tov, in which case there is no issue of relying on hetter mechirah.)”

    This shouldnt be noted since their flour was likely chometz (lots of flour gets treated with water during production and even if it wasnt I doubt they kept it away from water)

    ” But it seems to have reached a level of obsession…”

    agreed, but hey YOU wrote the letter

    “One time a year, he said, when everyone is running to the pizza store, he accepted upon himself bedavka not to go and buy pizza. He wants to demonstrate to himself that he can be above the frenzy and the tumult.”

    Who is “everyone” You don’t run (I hope) I don’t sure lots of people do, more don’t

    “But, like I said, in my eyes, the tomato sauce and cheese can wait another day.”
    Be’sder let it wait.

    “I’d like to also add, by the way, that the stores did a terrible job providing pizza for those who do eat pizza on Motzoei Pesach. The lines were forever, the wait was hours-long, and the pizza was horrible. Bad job all around”.

    Lol!

  7. i agree with the last sentence! The service in these stores was a disaster? Didn’t they know that it was going to be Motzoei Pesach? Terrible!

  8. The Gaon Making havdala on beer was not a self indulging desire. Rather it was to show that we now have ended the mitzvah of not eating Chometz. However those running to pizza shops the minute pesach is over is out of self indulgence.

  9. TO REB SHMUEL MISKIN,

    YOU KNOW, BESIDES THE MENFOLK WHO LEARN THE WHOLE YOM TOV AND OVAD HASHEM, THERE ARE ALSO HOLY YIDDISHE MAMAS AND CHILDREN WHO PREPARED SO HARD WITH AHAVE TO COME INTO PASACH WITH K’SAK K’ERAK ETC ( THE HOLY BARDITCHIVER..ASK YOUR RAV WHAT IT MEANS)
    THEY WENT THRU PESACH WITH UTMOST CARE IT SHOULD NOT BE A MASHE HU OF CHUMET, EACH FAMILY ACCORDING TO THEIR MADREIGE WITHOUT COMPLAIN,S B’SIMCHE AND FINALLY COMES MOTZEI YOM TOV, THE MAMA, DAUGHTERS METICULESLY PUT AWAY THE PASACH WARE WASH IT FIRST. EVERY ITEM.
    AND WHEN THEY FINALLY FINNISH AND WANT TO SIT DOWN AND CATCH THEIR BREATH WITH A FRESH KOSHER PIZZA
    YOU HAVE THE UTTER CHTZPAH BRAZENESS,COLD HEARTEDNESS ‘OBSERVATION’ THAT THEY ARE BALLAI TAVES
    SHAME,
    SHAME,
    SHAME ON YOU .SOINE YISROEL
    WHAT SHOUILD THEY EAT, MEAT?? LATE AT NIGNT?? WHAT THE THEY HAD ALL YOM TOV…POTATOES.
    THAT GOES THRU THIER NOSES

    YES, LET THEM ENJOY THE DELICIOUS FRESHLY BAKED PIZZA
    ——————————————————————————————————–

    BY THE THE WAY, THE RAMA SAYS THAT ONE SHOULD MAKE HAVEDALEH MOITZE PEASACH ON BEER BECAUSE ITS CHAVIV (TAYVEH,HUH??) BECAUSE ONE DIDNT HAVE IT ALL PESACH .SHULCHEN URICH, OHR HACHAIM CHAPTER 296 SEUF 2. !!
    ACCORDING TO YOU, WHY SHOULD WE CHAP TO BEER THAT WE LIKE AND MISSED ALL PEASACH, AS THE RAMA STATES,
    CANT OUR TEVAH WAIT TILL TOMORROW??!!
    SHAME
    SHAME

    AND WHERE DOES IT SAY THE THE HOLY YIDDISH MAMES ARE OBLIGATED NOT TO LET THEIR
    MUTERDIGE TAVES LOOSE??

    YIDE YOSEF

  10. REB SHMUEL.
    YOU SAY ‘A REGULAR PERSON TOLD ME HE WAS MEKABEL…..’

    SO? WHAT ARE YOU TRYING TO SAY, EVERY YID OR YIDDENE UNDER THE SUN HAS TO BE MEKABEL WHAT ANOTHER YID IS MEKABEL N THEM SELVES/
    PLEASE THINK THRU BEFORE YOU SEND OUT YOUR ‘HEILIGE’ PSAK HALOCHOS

    JJG

  11. Ever heard about the saying “live and let live”?
    Not everything has t one discussed and dissected. You want pizza stand on line you don’t enjoy a good night sleep.

  12. I beg to disagree with the esteemed letter writer. As a member of a large family kna”h with many little kids and several big ones, the motzoei Pesach pizza is a huge incentive for the kids who are helping to get all the Pesach dishes washed, dried and put away by 12AM in order to be chometzdik for when the pizza is ready. If this would not happen on motzoei Pesach, the dishes would just sit… and sit…. and sit… until the little kids are back in school, and Mommy will have to do it all by herself. On motzoei Pesach, the little kids are sleeping, the bachurim are home, and all the big kids are excited about helping in order to get the prize.
    PS. The pizza we got from the fast and friendly drive-through was hot, cheesy, saucy and absolutely delicious. Go figure.

  13. It’s all about being social. Why is it a Minhag Yisroel to go to Chinese restaurants on X-Mas and wait hours to be seated? Because they see old friends and schmooze. I read about a Frei woman who loved going to the “Kosher Style” restaurant the night before Pesach and waiting 2 hours to eat because she saw all her friends and neighbors. These are Jewish bonding experiences. It’s not about the pizza. It’s about the community connection. I’ve never eaten pizza Motzei Pesach because I’m just not that social.

  14. I get a text with my friend’s pizza pie. I would never do it and think it’s gross and gluttonous but fargin those who want it and don’t judge.

  15. I think the questions raised are reasonable but I disagree with the general criticism.

    It is perfectly reasonable to want to eat a normal supper on any given night. That supper is, for many people, (at least occasionally) pizza. So, having pizza right after Pesach is fine, regardless of the fact that they haven’t eaten any leavened food in well over a week.

  16. No halacha was broken so its ok. OTOH loshon hora is abominable to me. If someone wants to wait on long lines for ‘lousy’ pizza that’s their business, betayavone.

  17. My father was a truck driver for Korns and told me stories of how chasidim coming home form their rebbe’s tishen would be knocking on the doors at 2:00 AM yelling MIR DAFS ZICH BROIT.

  18. Just to mention: then minhag of Chassidei Pittsburgh is not to eat any Chometz until the Shabbos after Pesach. This way you go back to Chometz with a seudas Mitzva. In addition, the Pittsburgher Rebbe doesn’t eat any Chometz until Shavuous afternoon, after Kabbolas haTorah.

  19. AND , WHATS MORE, DE RAMA STATES ONE SHOULD MAKE HAVDALAH MOITZE YOM TOV ON BEER, AS ONE COULDNT DRINK BEER ALL PASACH , SO ITS CHAVIB. ACCORDING TOU, HE SHOULNT GO AFER HIS TYVES!!

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