Last Updated 4/9/2018 at 10:30 PM
Jerusalem: In a tale reminiscent of the classic Passover song “Had Gadya”, the entire Israeli economy came precariously close to collapse on Erev Pesach because of a Yeshiva student’s delinquent cell phone bill. “I didn’t realize our economy was so fragile and that everything could be wrecked by one flaky guy.” noted Karnit Flug, Governor of the Bank of Israel. “Or maybe I should have known better than to depend on an 18-year old Yeshiva Bachur.”
The near-miss economic meltdown started when Yeshiva (No, not THAT Yeshiva) student Shimmy R. failed to pay his phone bill for several months. “I was really absorbed in my Torah studies, so I just kinda forgot.” explained Shimmy. “What I mean is, a few guys from my dorm went to Tzfat to learn with this amazing kabbalist and um… there was some awesome weed and um…. then suddenly I get a frantic call from my cellphone company telling me that they are going bankrupt unless I pay my bill immediately.”
As a result of Shimmy’s delinquent bill, Pelephone, the Israeli company providing his cellphone plan was unable to make payroll. “We’ve been in the minus for months… you know, like all Israelis.” explained Pelephone Spokesperson Yisroel B. “So when we didn’t get our money from Shimmy, we fell into the really bad minus… like minus minus… and couldn’t pay our employees.”
As a result, none of their employees were able to do their weekly shopping. “We have seven kids, so I’m always WORKING!” Programmer Hillel K. explained. “I mean, I need to pay hundreds of shekels a week for yogurt alone!” Consequently, grocery chain Osher Ad found itself short of funds and unable to pay its suppliers. “We’re in the minus sometimes.” explained Osher Ad manager Meir P. “But somehow this past month, we fell into the really bad minus and the bank couldn’t extend our credit to pay Osem and Strauss and all those food companies.”
As a result of their unpaid invoices, the major Israeli food manufacturers were unable to meet their obligations to the tax authority. “So, we skipped a month of paying Maas Hachnasah, what’s the big deal? Doesn’t everyone do it?” explained Yossi K., lead accountant for Osem Foods. “Israel is a big country with lots of taxpayers, so it’s not like the whole Bank of Israel was waiting on us to pay our taxes, right? That’s just crazy.”
“So yeah, I’m not sure how it happened exactly, but yes, the entire Israeli economy fell into the minus… like the really serious kind of minus” noted Ms. Flug. “And we were counting on the cash from Osem to keep funding the government and yeah…it almost didn’t happen.”
In a dramatic twist, Shimmy finally did stumble out of his stupor and paid his cellphone bill and the cellphone company did pay their employees and the employees did go to Osher Ad and Osher Ad did get enough revenue to pay its suppliers and the suppliers did make their tax payments to the government and the government did have enough to get out of the minus….at least for this month.