Sue's post about goat singing, laughing uncontrollably, and doing so at inappropriate times is hilarious. What's not so hilarious is when I do it. Mainly, that I seem to always do it. I don't think I've attended a Yom Kippur or Rosh HaShanah service where a significant chunk of my time wasn't spent convulsing in laughter, desperately trying to calm myself by reading biblical genealogies and hoping my Grandfather wasn't about to yell at me. At least I only do it around my family though, right?
This year I spent Christmas in Kansas with my girlfriend and her family. As a Jew, it was all new to me, and as a boyfriend, I'd never spent a holiday with folks not my own. But this year I was in Kansas and it was all going well, good presents, lots of food, Chiefs game on Christmas day...and then we went to services. And not just any services, this was the midnight candle service, the somber, serious, reflective one. At this Church, preacher was a transient position, with one after the other cycling through the podium and doing their thing. Finally, a short-haired, stout woman steps up to the stage and begins leading us in prayer. I don't really know which one, though, because as soon as she approached the lectern, my girlfriend, forgetting how to whisper, said:
"Wow. She really looks like a lesbian."
God, who is a jealous, vengeful God, had taken her whisper and amplified it to normal volume. And so it was that the older woman in front of my girlfriend, her hair painstakingly done into a beehive, whirled around to glare in disapproval and shock. And so it was that I spent the next 7-10 minutes doubled up in unstoppable fits of laughter, tears flowing down my face, as her parents (sitting on her other side and blissfully unaware of her comment), kept glancing over to see what had sent me into seizures.
It was the best Christmas ever.