By Harvey Tobkes

This story happened many years ago. My sister Doris, asked me to be godfather to her new born first boy, baby Warren, and of course I was delighted.

The snipping ceremony was held on the traditional 8th day after birth at the Women’s Hospital in Manhattan, and only a handful of guests were invited to attend. Circumcisions are done by a Mohel (a Jewish ritual circumciser) who performs a little cut on the foreskin of the penis of a male baby who is to enter the Jewish covenant.

It is customary to honor family and friends allowing them to participate in holding the baby at various parts of the bris. The highest honor is to be the “Sandak,” who holds the baby during the actual circumcision.

I didn’t know much about the event, as I was in my twenties and this was the first time I witnessed a Bris.

The time came and the Mohel wet the baby’s lips with wine and said a prayer and then asked who was the Sandak. That was me! I was the Sandak and The Godfather, so I stepped forward and he picked up my 8-day-old nephew and gently placed the baby, Warren, in my arms.

I held him as securely as I knew how, and focused on what the “Snipper” was snipping, and all of a sudden, I imagined and felt it was being done to me. And even more suddenly, I broke out in a cold sweat, and I realized I was going to faint, yet I had presence of mind to shout, “Take the baby!” and I passed the bundled package to somebody.

They tell me I hit the floor like a ton of bricks, and when I awoke the first thing I did was grab my crotch. I was relieved to know that everything was intact, but by that time poor little baby Warren had been snipped.

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