What (Else) Is Jewish About FatJew?
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What (Else) Is Jewish About FatJew?

UWS, radiologist dad, Jewfro. And more.

Hannah Dreyfus is a staff writer at the New York Jewish Week. She covers abuses of power in non-profit and religious settings. She heads up the Investigative Journalism Fund, an initiative to fill a gap in investigative and enterprise reporting. Reach her at hannah@jewishweek.org

The Fat Jew, aka Josh Ostrovsky, is a 30-year-old Instagram star with over one million followers. He got a big write-up in the Times today. The Chelsea resident, whose video of teaching homeless people “SoulCycle” classes on parked Citi Bikes last summer went viral, is a recently crowned social media king. But is he a true Jewish prince? You decide.

1. He grew up on the Upper West Side.

2. Daddy Saul is a radiologist.

3. Dad wonders about his son's choice of career. The Fat Jew wouldn't reveal his income to the Times but said it is “enough to have my dad take me seriously now. Sort of.”

4. Summer camp was formative; Ostrovsky's alter ego was inspired by a paunchy counselor who referred to himself as a 'fat Jew.'

5. He rides in a Jewish motorcycle gang: “We’re nine Jews . . . weekend warriors, orthopedic surgeons, and on the weekends they’re like, ‘Let’s ride. We’re not going to pop wheelies and get into bar fights. So we ride to Westchester on a nice day and get prosciutto paninis and use hand signals and go the speed limit. Prosciutto is about as badass as we get.”

6. Holocaust awareness. A recent popular post opined: “The soul patch is a lot like a Hitler mustache, but below the lower lip and worn by people much worse than Hitler.”

7. Fat Jew is also mourning Joan Rivers. The day after she died earlier this month, Ostrovsky posted on Instagram a two-year-old photo of Ms. Rivers standing near him, in which his hair is frizzed into a wide halo. He wrote in tribute that Ms. Rivers told him to get a haircut, adding, “Your face and head looks like my vagina in the ‘60s.”

8. Like fellow performers Paul Rudd and Idina Menzel, he does the Bar Mitzvah circuit. In keeping with his somewhat surreal sensibility, Ostrovsky's resume includes one in Portugal.

9. Jewfro. But he calls it a "hair errection," a solid, vertical 10-inch ponytail.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=leTihyqvx1E

hannah@jewishweek.org

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