The Torah teaches tolerance. It appeared that the old school Jews who owned the warehouse never got the memo. Or maybe they equated the tolerance of non-Jewish individuals with apathy because some out of touch old fart scholars decreed it so.
Whatever the case, Mr. Gold projected an irritating moral superiority that he claimed Judaism had bestowed upon him. It was obvious that the pint-sized administrator of the warehouse embraced the Jewish faith as a business strategy, only because the owners were devoutly Jewish. Mr. Gold often referred to Judaism as “weird,” and once remarked that he appreciated a faith that demanded frequent days off work to acknowledge holidays.
He staunchly defended the policy of forcing residents to sign a legal document giving the warehouse permission to serve traditional kosher food—not delicious and hearty delicatessen fare, but grub symbolic of suffering and esoteric notions. I categorized this self-righteous tactic as nothing less than underhanded, akin to condescending political campaign volunteers promising residents a redecorated room or their favorite dinner if they voted for a particular candidate. It’s extremely rare that people choose to be banished to a warehouse; for most there is no choice. The sanctimonious owners realized this, pissed on belief systems different from their own and mandated that potential residents sign the document or be refused admission.
In fact the owners did a disservice to their beloved Judaism by instigating the policy. First and foremost, they screwed up royally when they entrusted unsophisticated Filipinos with the responsibility of preparing kosher cuisine. The administration once slated bagels and lox as a main meal. When dinnertime on the designated day rolled around, the CNA’s presented each resident with a stale half-bagel languishing on a limp leaf of lettuce. I later learned that nobody working in the kitchen had ever heard of lox.
Even if the food had been prepared by knowledgeable cooks abiding by Jewish law, it would have suffered from inferior ingredients. Disgruntled (and for the most part astonishingly ignorant) residents came to hate Jews, especially during Passover when sympathetic CNA’s doled out hardcore “Jew food.” Residents who had grown up practicing Judaism sadly shook their heads and commented that the owners shamed themselves by allowing seventh-rate observations of Jewish custom.