If nothing else, this video is a testament to the diversity and good will of the people in Los Angeles.
Over the weekend, Jimmy Kimmel sent a camera crew to Canter's Deli on Fairfax Avenue to get some clarity on the meaning of Kwanzaa. The elderly patrons of the landmark Jewish deli tried their best to explain the African-American holiday.
"It's an animal, right? I know it's in Australia -- isn't it?" said one beleaguered woman at the pastry counter.
Another woman, seated in a booth, started off promisingly but ended up scrunching her face at where she landed: "African-Americans wanted to celebrate... their own Christmas!"
Then, to be fair, Kimmel's camera crew walked a few storefronts up the street to Legends barbershop to ask their mostly African-American clientele about the meaning of Hanukkah.
One man got points from us for mentioning the Maccabees -- but we immediately took them away when he also asserted that the Scottish were involved.
Another customer hilariously blends a second Jewish holiday (Passover) into the mix to turn Hanukkah into a holiday of horrors: "You know, they put blood on the door. It goes by, people stay alive. People don't have blood on the door, they die a bad death."
Maybe in the new year, Canter's and Legends should co-host a block party so everyone can get to know each other a little better.
Kwanzaa was first created in 1966 as both an alternative end-of-the-year holiday for African-Americans and a celebration of African-American and Pan-African history and culture. Each day from December 26 to January 1, families light one candle on the Kwanzaa candle holder to celebrate each of these seven African values: unity, self-determination, collective work and responsibility, cooperative economics, purpose, creativity and faith. To learn about more Kwanzaa symbols, check out the official Kwanzaa website.
Hanukkah, also known as the Festival of Lights, celebrates the reclamation of a Jewish temple from the hands of an invading Greek army. A miracle is also associated with the historical event; when the victorious rebels (the Maccabees) lit just one day's supply of oil for the temple's menorah, the fuel burned for eight more days. To celebrate the miracle, Jewish families light one candle on the menorah for eight days. The minor Jewish holiday has gained prominence and become a gift-giving holiday because of its proximity to Christmas, a Christian holiday. To learn more about Hanukkah, check out Chabad.org.
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