I just came back from a family(from the Dutch side) gathering that always is held on the first day of advent and I guess is something we do to celebrate the coming of Christmas.
Let’s just say that Christmas is a very big thing in this part of the family.
And not in a religious way.
It’s more focused on candy, sweets, food and lot’s of alcohol plus some kind of homebrew that can be used to remove nail polish with if there is anything left after the party.
Oh yes, Christmas songs and gifts are somehow important too. According to Dutch traditions Santa (or Sinterklaas) and his minions arrive on Dec 5 to give gifts to all the nice children. But because we are greedy and need to do it on a day where everyone can get together, then we do it in the weekend before or sometimes after the 5th.
I believe that the advent tradition began as a small feast for the children in the family where they could do some Christmas decorations, play and fool around with each other, and that the family then had a reason to get together. One day it got extended to “let’s have some more food and drinks for the so-called adults too!”.
Today I also became the target of a joke at the party.
My dad’s brother, my uncle, is someone who is planning his jokes well ahead and feel no shame in life – I guess that part is a family disease because his wife and 2 sons is the same, and this time they teamed up against me! Well one of the event’s were against little me.
“S.J. Some of us has still not received any invitation from you.”
“or WE haven’t.”
“We don’t know if we ever will be invited to your wedding because we have now been waiting for it for years, and were wondering if a gay wedding is so secret that you don’t dare to invite your family, or if it is an exclusive gays only event?!”.
At that point. I am thinking “WTF?” while I am looking over at my sister, who looked like she were about to pee herself because she were laughing so much.
Clearly she knew what was going on.
“We did our research on gay weddings and from there we became inspired to sing a song for you, that we are also planning to sing at your wedding if you don’t get married soon.”
Around that time I were wondering if I should run and hide somewhere.
“To make sure that everyone here know and is well prepared for your wedding – that we hope will be very soon – I am inviting everyone here to sing with us.”
“Please come up to the front with me, so we all can sing this song that is specially re-written for you. The melody and lyrics is based on the song Y.M.C.A. by the Village People.”.
20++ people then stood up and faced me, while my aunt and their sons handed out the song that they have made and forced everyone to sing for me while my face felt red as an fire engine. Well it felt awful warm at least.
…. I don’t know what is worse? Having family members who put you in the dark corner close to emergency exit at family gatherings and then try to forget all about you, or put you in the spotlight? It now turns out that I got both types in the family.
It actually were sweet, fun and thankfully quick experience.
Thinking back to it, then it is fun to think about, but in the moment it felt a little too much.
Maybe that was because the joke were targeted me this time instead of some of the others?
It turned out that they, my uncle, his wife and kids, talked about me a few weeks back, and came in doubt if I already were married, and if so, why they haven’t been invited to anything at all or met my partner yet??
They called my sister to find out what my status were, and she replied ironically that I still had to find the right wedding song before I could even think about sending any invitations out.
The conversation continued about and around me. What I would be doing with the less accepting part of my Singaporean relatives? How would I prepare them for the shock? What is going on in a same-sex wedding?
Oh! And if both brides would wear white dresses??
Okay, I guess that question were more from my aunt than from my uncle, who I guess don’t care much about what I would wear to my own wedding.
None of them even thought about just calling me to ask.
In their discussion they, I guess my cousins, found this video on YouTube that I feel hit it perfectly, and I am quite sure that I will have to arrange some sort of an pre wedding seminar in the same style for some of my relatives in Singapore before they would dare go to a same-sex wedding.
I had already seen the video a few times before today and find it so fun, that I wish someone would make a Singaporean version of it.
While, or after they watched the video, one of them remembered my sisters quick remark about finding the right wedding song, and decided to make one for me (that I under no circumstances will allow to be played at my one day wedding to be!).