1. Every week since 1996, Rabbi Yael Buechler has given herself a manicure inspired by the weekly Torah portion.
In 2011, she launched Midrash Manicures, a site where she posts pictures of her nails and encourages others to join in.
“Women and men of all ages have told me how they can connect to their own Judaism in a new way through these manicures,” she told BuzzFeed in an emailed statement. “They are a great conversation piece and a fabulous way to take Judaism to a meaningful and fashionable level.”
To this end, she founded an after-school program at the Solomon Schecter School in Westchester, NY, also called Midrash Manicures. “If I said come to a Midrash course, I’d have five or six students,” Rabbi Buechler told The New York Times of the club. “But Midrash Manicures? Twenty plus.”
2. She’s done manicures on everything from the beginning of the book of Genesis…
That’s the most adorable fruit from the Tree of Knowledge I ever did see.
3. To relatively obscure stories like that of Dinah, Joseph’s sister.
If you weren’t paying attention in Hebrew school, the elevator version is that Dinah is defiled by a prince from Shechem and then her brothers kill everyone in the tribe as vengeance. Not the easiest story to replicate in miniature on one’s nails. (Although Rabbi Buechler is ambidextrous, she told BuzzFeed, which makes things much easier.)
4. The Rabbi also appreciates a good pun: this manicure represents the yoke of Torah.
5. However, Passover is her most favorite holiday to render on her nails.
“After all,” she said, “God clearly gave us ten fingers so we could paint the ten plagues on them! A few years back I was in the audience of The Daily Show, and I told Jon Stewart I had the ten plagues on my fingernails. To which he responded, ‘I have a tattoo of Pharaoh on my thigh.’
If you dig her manicures but aren’t quite up to the challenge of painting her own, you can buy Midrash Manicures decals here.