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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Four Weddings and a Funeral Minus Three Weddings

Four Weddings and a Funeral Minus Three Weddings

Wow, how to be classy. I didn't do that. Mine was probably worse.

I've never been good at math plus the title "Four Weddings and a Funeral" seemed catchy. The problem being, there was only one wedding not four, but ah, just a few numbers off. 
I think there was a movie title like that with Hugh Grant.

I did go to a wedding and a funeral in Japan. Both were a little strict. I always think of weddings as a blast, but Japanese Shinto ones are a little overly dramatic and you need to follow rules.
You have to say certain things which I don't recall (and I just mumbled ra ra ra a few times), since I didn't understand. You are also supposed to drink sake from a plate at a set time but I misunderstood and drank it as soon as I saw it (bad luck x 1000 for the couple maybe?). Whoops!

Traditional Snowmen funeral. Bucket and all. Shinto is similar, in the fact they both like the colour white.

The funeral was similar except it was a Buddhist funeral and I messed up majorly, so I was laughing during the funeral procession. We were supposed to light incense and put it in this kind of sand area, but mine got too hot so I put it on the wood table and it started to smoke the wood. Luckily they blamed it on my foreign "Gaijin-ness" when in fact it was because I'm an idiot.

I should have tried this at the traditional Shinto wedding, but with sake.

Incidentally I confused the Japanese character for my honourable condolences, to congrats on your honourable wedding. The Japanese/ Chinese character for honourable is the same, and I didn't recognize the other two, so I figured they were interchangeable.
Someone mentioned you can buy this special envelope at any grocery store, so I figured what the hell (what the hay for you younger people) why not buy one there. The same person mentioned you are supposed to put money inside of it. I found out later the quality of the bill matters as well. If you are congratulating someone you must ensure its a new bill crisp and flat. If its for a funeral you have to give an old crumpled ratty tat tat bill (aka heavily used). Who knew?
Naturally at the funeral I gave the wrong bill, a brand new crisp bill indicating they last forever (which might mean they will stay a hungry ghost?). Whoops!
As I handed him the envelope he gave me a strange look, as if shocked. He had seen the wrong characters I guess. 
I had forgotten the set phrase I was supposed to say to him so I decided to say something that sounded somewhat similar "I hope you get through your sickness, it won't last forever." Smooth recovery I thought. 
Or maybe not.
I'm sure for him this was a WTF moment. First, this stupid foreigner comes to his families funeral. He nearly burns down the ancient Buddhist temple, he gives an envelope with a small amount of money (that may have been another issue too) and to top it off he tells me to get over a sickness I don't even have. On top of that, he gets a bonus surprise when he finds a brand new crisp bill in as a reward for the death in the family and an everlasting ghost. Whoops!
I'm lucky I didn't get a slap or had my own funeral. 
He did his cordial and 100% fake thank you and I walked away.
I suspect he has a voodoo doll of me that he is poking everynight. My joints have been aching recently, which would explain it.

Hey a little to the left, my shoulder needs some relief. No more needles in the eye kindly.

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My Youtube Channel, wearing red tights and jumping around as Deadpool (but I say Dadpool to avoid copyright. Smarter than I look!)

Other funny stories from this blog

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