Funerals are depressing things, aren't they? You've got to have battery acid coursing through your veins to not shed a tear during one, particularly during the eulogy. Especially when it's delivered by a heart-broken child of deceased parent. It's the real affection for which I cry. Not the pomp and ceremony of funerals - particularly those so vastly different from the ones I remember from my Catholic upbringing.
But The Pant sure does know how to find the fun in funeral. Last year, when The Grandpa died, I hosted the wake and it turned out to be in the top five biggest nights of 2010 - the antics of which I will keep for another blog post.
And so I've compiled a little list for you. How terribly organised of me?
The Pant's Guide To Putting The Fun Back Into Funeral:
1). Take a 4-year-old with you. Particularly one whose understanding of church is entirely limited to that of the Catholic church. Man, they say the damnedest things:
The Daughter: Mom! That Jesus looks so different to ours. Look, he's wearing normal clothes. And he isn't even a brown person.
The Daughter: Mom!! Why are those people putting their hands in the air??
And just when the rogue evangelist guy was getting into full swing and said something along the lines of "In Jesus' name", she crossed herself perfectly. A sign that she has never mastered before. A sign that was so alien in these surroundings that the entire congregation seemed to take in a collective short, sharp breath when she did this.
2). Go to the wake. They're only really awkward until the end of the first drink. But the swiftness with which liquor is sunk - even if you're not partaking - is always fun to watch.
And, if possible, take a 4 year-old with you. Mine stripped down into knickers and splashed into the pool. And nothing quite averts attention from bereavement quite like the innocent delight in a child's laughter. Within minutes, she had a whole host of adults in the pool with her (and other children too).
3). But this is the most important point: go to the funerals of people you actually like. Because the chances are high that their people are people you like too. And being in the company of people you like is like health spa for the soul.
Yes, funerals are crap because death, and its finality, sucks. Saying goodbye is awful. And it's painful to watch the pain of others. But not living in the moment - well, that's just a sin. And so, somehow, amidst the darkness of the funeral, fun is there to be found.
PS Also, must mention that The Pant met a hottie-hot-pants running guy whose invited me to run with him on Tuesday morn. He's run the comrades. Am praying for miracle fitness between now and then. The Pant: not one to miss an opportunity.