Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

Nudnik

A nudnik is someone who is constantly asking you for something or otherwise taking up your time.

    Nudnik is a Yiddish word that has entered modern Hebrew. It describes a common and even respected modus operandi in Israeli society. A nudnik is someone who is constantly asking you for something or otherwise taking up your time.

    Israel is a society where protectsia, or who you know, can get you far. Think of it as living with extended family. Of course, it’s ok to ask your cousin’s wife’s uncle who happens to be a big noise in something or other for a helping hand. Nudnicking is just an extension of this view of social networking. If you pester people long enough, you can wear them down, especially if they’re distantly related to you. So for example, at my children’s school in Jerusalem, this time of year, there are parents who phone every day to see if their child has been accepted. Statistical research on the subject hasn’t been done, but it doesn’t need to be. Everyone knows that the nudniks’ children get accepted to school.

    According to my investigations, nudnik comes from the Russian nudnyi, which means to bore. In Yiddish the verb is nuden. However, the Hebrew nad refers to movement, and its derivative, nidnud, means a repetitive swinging motion, which describes the behaviour of the nudnik pretty well.

Jewish words

Darchei Shalom

Rabbi Julian Sinclair

Darchei Shalom
Jewish words

Chizuk

Rabbi Julian Sinclair

Chizuk
Jewish words

Harat Olam

Rabbi Julian Sinclair

Harat Olam
Jewish words

Ga'agua

Rabbi Julian Sinclair

Ga'agua
Jewish words

Nafka Mina

Rabbi Julian Sinclair

Nafka Mina
Jewish words

Machzor

Rabbi Julian Sinclair

Machzor
Jewish words

Geshmack

Rabbi Julian Sinclair

Geshmack
Jewish words

Neilah

Rabbi Julian Sinclair

Neilah
Jewish words

Taharah

Rabbi Julian Sinclair

Taharah