By Jason Hood, December 3rd, 2010

(above comic strip by Evan Dorkin)

Happy Hanukkah! And what better week to celebrate Jewish New Yorkers by showcasing Heeb Magazine? Started in Brooklyn (where else?) in 2001, it continues a long line of cheeky, self-deprecating Jewish comedy for a young, urban Generation Y audience.

And seriously, I mean it when I say self-deprecating. For example, for people who want to get involved in the publication, there’s a section titled “Join the Conspiracy.” The magazine covers arts, music, politics and culture, though the subjects don’t necessarily have to be Jewish themselves. You can find an article about Kanye West’s new album right next to one about an expensive, “swanky” menorah.

It’s not all silliness though. One informative article, titled “Jews Aren’t Actually Racists: Who Knew?” discusses the little-known interactions between Jewish Americans and Native Americans in the Old West. They also include sections called “Chosen Books,” “Chosen Music” and “Chosen Video,” where they feature a profile on various musicians, books or videos.

There’s also the “Heeb 100,” which features short articles on “Jews (and half-Jews) who are making a difference” in fields such as art, music, comedy, activism and entrepreneurship. Another semi-regular installment is “Gratuitous Jewess.” It’s exactly what it sounds like: photos and a profile of a rather beautiful young Jewish woman, though more than just a pretty face. The current honoree, Leyla Leidecker, is a boxer, filmmaker and model.

And it’s really not just a magazine. Heeb also organizes plenty of events: On December 21, RADAR contributors Molly Crabapple, Dean Haspiel, and Jeff Newelt will be among the performers at Heeb Storytelling: The Live Comics Edition at Joe’s Pub, where the creators will project live, graphic novel style comics on a big screen. EVENT INFO And on Christmas Eve, Heebonism, at Fontana’s, promises to bring “Jews and gentiles together in celebration of that nice Jewish boy’s 2010th birthday.” EVENT INFO

That last event probably sums up Heeb Magazine the best: you don’t have to be Jewish to get a kick out of it, but it helps to be in on “the conspiracy.”

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