Bar Mitzvah Boy Pens Plea For Better Suits

We hear ya, Zeke. Read More

By / March 21, 2014

Zeke Winitsky, a 13-year-old boy from North Jersey, has penned a heartfelt plea in Esquire for better bar mitzvah suits. He went to the mall with his Mom looking for something sharp for the occasion, but struggled to find anything age and style-appropriate:

On the first day, God created the navy blue blazer with brass buttons and khakis. And I looked and saw that it was not good.

On the second day, He made the ill-fitting all-black suit. And I looked and saw that it was kinda bland.

On the third day he created the boxy grey suit — and things were starting to get bleak.

Now, I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, “But wait! The bar mitzvah is about so much more than a suit! Let me pen an outraged comment about the hopelessness of ‘kids today’ right here!” To that I say: hold your fire. This kid is smart. He knows what’s up. He knows that a “navy blue blazer with brass buttons and khakis” sucks. I’m pretty sure he knows his parsha too, but this isn’t about that. This is about looking good, which is no trivial thing when you’re on the cusp of puberty/Jewish manhood—the most awkward phase ever—and about to read Torah and speechify in front of all your friends and family. Zeke, I applaud your sartorial maturity! (My search for a bat mitzvah dress was similarly fraught.)

I had always wanted a Brooks Brothers suit, so we went there first. I tried on the two suits I liked. But what I found is that I looked like a banker… from 1986. I don’t know why bar mitzvah suits must be so tacky — is it one of the 613 commandments in the Old Testament? Here’s the thing: I’m not a banker. I’m cool! I play the guitar! I have friends! Brooks Brothers had betrayed me. My mom and I agreed that this was not the right place for me.

Read the rest here.

Also: My Big Fat Hassidic Bar Mitzvah