All synagogues are the same: at the back of the stage (it’s called a bimah, but it’s a stage) is the Ark, which is a cubbyhole where the Torahs are kept. They are hidden by a little magic curtain, and when the Rabbi slides it open, everyone has to stand. Once, the pulley broke and the curtain was stuck at halfway open; we all had to crouch until it was fixed, and both the Schmocklemans collapsed.
Anyway, I said Torahs because–even though you only used one in a service–there was always more than one scroll. The temple would build a podium for them and if you were bored–and you were–you could pretend the Jews had a great showing in the Holy Book Olympics.
Except there were no rules about how many Torahs you could have, so the fancy-shmancy temples would have five and six Torahs. Some Rabbis worried about a Torah Gap.
And here is the secret: instead of seeing the Torah Race for the sad and scrabbling status game that it was, every Jew in the congregation was judging the fuck out of the Temple if it didn’t have enough Torahs. If you invited me to your Bar Mitzvah and it was a two-scroll shul, I would not even RSVP.
Now you know a secret about the Jews.