Since we started off by giving our rescue chi mix the new Hebrew name of Simcha (roughly translates as 'joy'), we decided to introduce him to Jewish culture with the arrival soon of the Jewish New Year.
For those of you who may be unfamiliar with our traditions, the New Year has been heralded for millennia by the sounding of the Shofar. This is a hollowed out ram's horn, although other kosher animals' horns are permissible. These days, they are made mostly by Israeli artisans, via a process steeped in ritual and tradition. The narrow end is shaped into a mouthpiece very similar to that of a trumpet, and the Shofar blower buzzes his lips to create a very powerful and penetrating sound, meant to carry miles across ancient mountaintops.
I have a couple of Shofars, and I have blown one in our living room for Simcha's edification. He finds the sound very interesting, and it definitely captures his attention:
He considers the Shofar to be evil, at least as evil as a vacuum cleaner. It also looks somewhat like a bone, and here he is in attack mode:
After this session was all over, we felt he deserved a treat for tolerating our gently teasing him. He was willing to beg shamelessly for that treat:
And, of course, he still knows how to turn on the charm and make best use of his good looks: