Seinfeld: Israeli Jews not as whiny as New York Jews
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Seinfeld: Israeli Jews not as whiny as New York Jews

Ahead of Tel Aviv shows, comedian says in TV interview that he first thought of a career in stand-up while cutting banana leaves on a kibbutz at age 15

American comedian Jerry Seinfeld performs in Tel Aviv on December 19, 2015. (Miriam Alster/FLASH90)
American comedian Jerry Seinfeld performs in Tel Aviv on December 19, 2015. (Miriam Alster/FLASH90)

Ahead of two shows in Tel Aviv at the end of the month, comedian Jerry Seinfeld said that Israeli Jews are not as whiny as New York Jews, and also credited Israel with providing him with the inspiration to be a comic.

Speaking to Hadashot news, Seinfeld said he he was not planning any special material for the Israeli crowd in his shows here. “It’s special for them, it’s special for me,” he said of his trip to Israel, noting that “Jews in Israel are not like New York Jews, they are not so whiny. Same dog, different breed.”

But he credited Israel with giving him the impetus to be a comedian, recounting how he spent the summer of 1970 on a kibbutz in northern Israel, cutting leaves in the banana fields.

“Actually my very first thoughts of being a comedian were in Israel, when I was 15 and working on the kibbutz,” he said, noting that he was with other kids from New York who were “doing comedy and hanging around.”

Jerry Seinfeld at Kibbutz Sa’ar. in 1970 (Screen capture: Hadashot news)

“One of the kids said that being a comedian was the greatest thing you could be, and I thought ‘Wow, how could that come about?'” Seinfeld said.

“My comedy career honestly began at Kibbutz Sa’ar,” he said, adding that he was very pleased to be bringing his family to Israel for the first time.

Seinfeld is set to put on two shows at the Menora Mivtachim Arena in Tel Aviv on December 30, at 7 p.m. and 10 p.m.

Seinfeld, 63, last performed in Israel in December 2015 when he gave four full-house shows in the Menora Mivtachim Arena.

He had planned to put on one show, but three more were added after tickets for the first quickly sold out.

Seinfeld has previously visited in the country on private trips, including that volunteer stint on kibbutz.

The entertainer began working as a comic after finishing high school, and was catapulted to fame by his eponymous sitcom, which ran from 1989-1998.

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