Monday, September 21, 2009

Why Do They Call It a Wake When the Guest of Honor Looks Like He or She is Asleep?

I was at a wake for a friend of the family on Thursday who was known for tall stories. Maybe I'll post on that the other day. The point is that I was disappointed how reserved and polite people were at the wake. No one spoke about his propensity for telling an exaggerated tale. It was an endearing quality, actually. Children hung around him to listen. Grown men would egg him on a bit, but they egged each other on in their foibles, so he wasn't actually singled out. If we would have shared his stories, his wake would have been rockin'. As it was, we are all obeying the unwritten rule of decorum.

We all are kind of known for a personality trait, aren't we? My daddy was known for having a joke for every occasion. People used to corner him a parties (and wakes) and make him tell that joke to so and so that he told last time....

Anyone who has been to a Bible Study with me knows that I too have a joke for every occasion. Lots of them are Daddy's actually. Once, at a Bible Study when we were studying Isaiah, we had people deep in thought, not sure how to answer the study questions in front of us.

HRM: This passage reminds me of a joke.
Leader: (Throws book in the air over her head) OF COURSE it does!

I guess not everyone is comfortable with humor everywhere. I was later recommended by the leader to lead ANOTHER Bible Study myself. I think she was trying to get rid of me. I didn't accept the opportunity to lead, figuring that my sense of humor might be an obstacle to real learning if I was the leader.

Still, at my wake, I expect any of you who come to bring with you an email joke or cartoon I sent, a favorite funny tweet, or a description of a humorous post you like. Be an example at my wake, and encourage people to laugh with me, and be joyful.

Psalm 4: 6-8
6 Many are asking, "Who can show us any good?"
Let the light of your face shine upon us, O LORD.

7 You have filled my heart with greater joy
than when their grain and new wine abound.

8 I will lie down and sleep in peace,
for you alone, O LORD,
make me dwell in safety.

Life is funny. Come check out Wendy's blog carnival.

What do you think people will be saying at your wake? Just curious....


Billy Coffey said...

Here's an old Native American maxim: When we're born, we cry and the world rejoices. Live so that when you die, you rejoice and the world cries.

I've always tried to live my life by that. We'll see how things turn out.

Ginny (MAD21) said...

Love this, and Billy's comment. I agree. I hope my loved ones are sad to see me go, but leave my funeral laughing --even if it's at me--

jasonS said...

Thanks for making me smile and sad at the same time. Now that's a gift! :)

Stephanie Wetzel said...

You just need to lead the right group of people. I would totally attend a Bible Study that you led. Years ago, when we led small groups, we always asked at least one question to get people laughing. We became known as the group that always managed to summon the Bus to Hell to come pick us up.

Wendy said...

Oh Helen, you've given me so much funeral fodder over the past months... Please don't make me use it any time soon though. :o)

katdish said...

Engraved on a hypochondriac's tombstone:

See? I told you I was sick...

Sherri Murphy said...

Okay- after all the tears, I'll muster up the strength to tell one of your jokes. Or I may tell about the time you googled Richard Gere/gerbil incident....or maybe not.

Helen said...

Billy, I am sure many will be crying. Do you want me to bring my best jokes to cheer them up? Just say the word.
Ginny, those are pretty much my sentiments.
Jason, why sad? Are you gonna miss me?
Steph, Thanks. I may be breaking in a new Bible Study leader soon. Pray for her. :-)
Wendy, so far my schedule does not include trip to Heaven on this year's calendar...
Katdish, my husband likes to tell about the guy who needed the window open when he slept because of his condition. When asked what his condition is, he said hypocondria.
Sherri, I told you not to google Richard Gere only gerbil, didn't I?

Anonymous said...

Hi all. How are you?