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(Mazel bruche)

by Joseph Lateiner




In a certain small town there lived two couples: Dr. Good Luck and his wife, Rachel, and Berka, a shoemaker, with his wife, Blessing. Rachel is an ill-tempered woman, who beats and insults her husband, her servants and the people about her. the shoemaker's wife is just the reverse -- she is a fine, delicate, quiet woman; but her husband the shoemaker, is the ill-tempered one who beats his wife.

Then faith appears in the form of a woman, and she warns both couples, calling their attention to the outcome of leading such a life, where the man abuses the wife and vice-versa, where the wife abuses the husband. She tries to convince them that the greatest happiness in life can be acquired only in a peaceful and harmonious way. She puts both women, Rachel and Blessing, into a trance, and asks them to imagine themselves the following:

Rachel -- the wife of the doctor to be the wife of the shoemaker, and Blessing, the wife of the shoemaker, to be the wife of the doctor with this understanding; that in the presence of all, Blessing should appear to be the wife of the doctor, and Rachel the wife of the shoemaker. But the two heroines should not forget for a moment their real identity They go into their trance and while in that condition we see Blessing go into the doctor's house, and Rahel into the shoemaker's.


When Blessing awakens in the doctor's house, her maid is in a whirl. Realizing and knowing that she is the shoemaker's wife, yet the rich surroundings cause her to doubt. After a debate with herself she comes to the conclusion that she is the doctor's wife, and that her former life with the shoemaker was only a dream. The actions of the servants, relatives, and the doctor strengthen her belief and yet, to a certain extent she is in doubt, and as a result of this doubt many funny situations occur. The same funny situations appear when Rachel awakens in the shoemaker's home. Whereas the shoemaker was in the habit of beating his wife, Rachel beats him now.


Toward the finish both women awaken from their trance and realize their mistake. The personified Faith appears again and reminds them of the quarrelsome lives they have been leading, and how happy their lives will ber if peace will prevail in their homes.


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