Sunday, May 12, 2013
Eye of newt, toe of frog — and blood of pigeon?
A recent ad in the Brooklyn-based, Yiddish-language Di Tzeitung newspaper boasts a use for the city’s most ubiquitous bird as a cure for warts.
The ad recommends that the bird blood be poured onto the offensive skin growth, left for an hour and then washed off. In two or three weeks, “with God’s help, there is no memory thereof.”
The woman who placed the ad told The Post her daughter had a wart on her hand that disappeared after the treatment.
“I did this to help people,” she said. “You go to the market, you buy a pigeon, and the blood goes on the wart. That’s it.”
The woman said she has no connection to the Wallabout Street poultry market in Brooklyn that the ad plugs and only went there because no one in her ultra-Orthodox Jewish community would perform the treatment on her daughter.
One caveat, she said — the cure only works on Jews: “Gentiles are not capable of taking this.”
The ad ruffled the feathers of some in the Orthodox community, who said that it would likely be an object of ridicule. “This isn’t for every Tom, Dick or Harry,” said one area rabbi. “It’s like a talisman — something that helps you, but you don’t know why.”
And pigeon advocates were appalled, too.
“It’s meshuggeneh,” said Anna Dove, who runs the People for the Preservation of Pigeons Facebook page.
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