Shelsky’s Jewish deli mocks Trump on sidewalk signs

Pastrami on wry: Jewish deli scores customers, retweets with Trump-mocking signs

Brooklyn Paper
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Call it a schmear campaign!

The owner of popular Boerum Hill bagel and lox joint Shelsky’s is creating a buzz in the neighborhood and on social media with sidewalk signs that poke fun at President Trump and his bungling administration — the latest of which is “Thanks to customer feedback, we no longer sell Ivanka brand lox, whitefish, or herring,” in reference to Nordstrom dropping the First Daughter’s clothing line.

“I see people all day walking past the sign, stopping to take a photo and giving me the thumbs up from outside,” said Peter Shelsky, co-owner of the Jewish deli on Court Street. “I’ve been getting more Instagram hits than I’ve ever gotten on any of my photos.”

The deli don says more people have been coming inside since he started writing snarky sandwich boards.

He changes the signs each week, drawing comedic inspiration from the administra­tion’s so-called “alternative facts,” with past slogans including, “Brooklyn’s place for bacon, ham, lobster, and shrimp #alternati­vefacts,” and “100 percent of this weekend’s profits are going to the victims and families of Bowling Green.”

Passersby say they appreciate a free laugh in these tumultuous times.

“It’s funny,” said Park Sloper Zach Zohlman. “I enjoy a little whimsy in a dark time.”

Normally it’s a bad idea to mix business and politics, Shelsky acknowledges, but he says he feels morally obliged to mock the commander in chief in any way he can.

“I don’t see this as making this sort of statement about politics,” he said. “It’s just making a statement about what’s right, and a simple way I can do that is with comedy on the signs.”

Reach reporter Lauren Gill at or by calling (718) 260–2511. Follow her on Twitter @laurenk_gill
Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

Joey from Clinton Hills says:
I don't get it. Is the joke that they don't have any profits? Why brag that you have an unsuccessful business?
Feb. 15, 2017, 9:33 am
BD from Red Hook/Carroll Gardens says:
To Shelskys
This is ridiculous to put our chalkboard signs with cold cut names to put down our/ your President D Trump. It's disgusting, rude, vulgar. To get pedestrians thumbs up. To get business rolling in. It's cruel.
Feb. 15, 2017, 12:22 pm
Mike from Kensington says:
Huh? Sorry but Joey you seem slow! And BD, too bad..can't take the heat..get outta the kitchen. You're in a small minority here in Brooklyn of people who actually believe our dictator in chief isn't a lying crook who's already committed treason. By all means, don't shop at Shelskys...more Lox for me!!
Feb. 15, 2017, 12:40 pm
Rufus Leaking from BH says:
How about a free sandwich for anyone who saved $2500. a year on their healthcare? Who liked their doctor and kept their doctor.

How about closing Gitmo? All those unemployed guards should get a sandwich.
Feb. 15, 2017, 12:50 pm
Andrew Porter from Brooklyn Heights says:
I shop here whenever I'm going to Trader Joe's across the street. Excellent Orwasher's rye bread and onion pockets.

I saw the sign yesterday, and it was hilarious!
Feb. 15, 2017, 1:14 pm
NN from Boerum Hill says:
I love Shelsky’s!
Feb. 16, 2017, 8:54 am
Juan Wasserman says:
This is stupid. i see why BP likes it. bad puns!
Feb. 16, 2017, 10:01 am
Miram Heisler from Bensonhurst says:
First, this is a very profitable business as they sell delicious smoked fish and everything to go with it. They are making a statement for what is right. They are sticking up for good people. All of us are the children or grandchildren of immigrants. Today's immigrants work just as hard as our families did when they came to this country.
Feb. 17, 2017, 10:10 am
Morris from Mill Basin says:
These are good, moral people with great Jewish food who understand that detritus like Joey from Clinton Hills [sic] and BD from Red Hook/Carroll Gardens [which is it, moron?] need to be . . . well, you know.
Feb. 17, 2017, 10:59 am
Rufus Leaking from BH says:

Legal immigrants are as welcome as house guests.

Illegal immigrants are as welcome a burglars.
Feb. 17, 2017, 2:04 pm
Matt from Greenpoint says:
Man, we would have been at war with Russia by now... this sucks.
Feb. 18, 2017, 11 pm
Robert Cohen from Downtown Brooklyn says:
I passed the store today and the sign board outside said " # JewFoodResistance". I went inside to tell the staff I found the wording to be offensive and could not understand its purpose to intent. The lack of feedback to my inquiry was mind boggling.

Many of my friends and associates find the expression "JewFood" to be offensive.

I would like to see this expression removed from the sign. It does not serve any positive purpose.
Oct. 5, 2017, 4:25 pm

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