Friday, July 04, 2008

OH for the love of Salma.

You guys!

I just got back from a barbecue. Everyone was having fun: the food was cooking,lovely smells wafting across the yard, kids in the pool, lots of beers everywhere, a few folks with the hard stuff, some sangria, lots of laughs, sports discussions, general social catching up, the game on the outdoor TV, Sox beating the Yankees, etc.

All good, right? Small town America, celebrating a national holiday. Sweet.

So a large bunch of food comes off the grill, right, a HUGE platter of chicken, steak, pulled pork, burgers, dogs, veggie stuff, the works. It's all good. And then...


And THEN: We all had to gather while someone said GRACE! Seriously, 50 people, regardless of religious belief - OR LACK OF - were all expected to stand around and give homage to this ONE person's imaginary friend.

Fucking hell.

What do you do when this happens? Is there a chapter in the Miss Manners Guide for something like this?

What gets on my tits is this: If I had actually actively dipped out or not participated in this 'ceremony' would it have been obvious and caused some kind of offense? And if so, why then is it okay for someone's religious beliefs to highjack (word used absolutely fucking on purpose) the day and this point in time for EVERYONE at the BBQ, when this person did not KNOW many of the people there, and could not judge what religious beliefs everyone else held, if any, when my LACK of religious beliefs would have caused offense?

Why is it okay to blast your religious beliefs to a crowd of unknown people, when it's offensive to express the opinion that you're atheist?

I've walked on egg shells for too fucking long. It is time for me to start getting militant about this.

It starts here. I don't want to hear any fucking church bells this weekend. It OFFENDS me that other people's religious beliefs interfere with my fucking Sunday morning lie-in. Got it?

Good.

That is all.

16 Comments:

Blogger Dr Maroon said...

Rabbit Girl!
I'm surprised at you.
There is absolutely nothing wrong in an athiest saying grace.
As for form and manners, you join in heartily and say Amen audibliy after everyone else. Jesus Andraste, you should know all this stuff.
Stop being so fucking gauche.

Some hae meat and canna eat,
And some wad eat that want it;
But we hae meat, and we can eat,
Sae let the Lord be thankit.

05 July, 2008 04:13  
Blogger Dr Maroon said...

Oh, happy 4th of July by the way. Was it like Eddie Murphy's eponymous "ccok-out"? I hope so. I would love to go to a genuine 4th of July shindig.
I'm not envious, I'm jealous.

05 July, 2008 04:19  
Blogger gimme a minute said...

You ought to have insisted on following up grace with a prayer to Santa, listing your Christmas wishes in excruciating detail.

05 July, 2008 05:16  
Blogger Nora said...

Just celebrate the 4th of July in the spirit that you have the right to be just as offended by them as they have the right to be offended by you. That was the whole point of the holiday, was it not?

05 July, 2008 07:58  
Blogger Kim Ayres said...

What about getting everyone to kneel towards Mecca? I've always fancied that one - much more oomph than just mumbling grace.

05 July, 2008 08:03  
Blogger Andraste said...

Maroon - you shouldn't be surprised. I believe the world would be a better place without religion, and though I did not cause any scenes, but stood quietly while others said Grace, I think MIss Manners herself couldn't have faulted me for my behavior. What you saw on the blog was a bit of an alcohol fuelled rant. And I DID have a nice fourth, thanks. I'm not the most jingoistic of Americans, but I do appreciate all that comes with having been born here.

Gimme - not a bad idea, though being a rabbit girl, I think I'd use the EAster Bunny.

Nora - welcome to the pub! Yes, I did just that - kept my mouth shut, and enjoyed the day. It was only when I got home and saw the gaping maw of the blog post window that I realized I had something to say about...anything, really.

Kim - ooooh...that would have gone down like a fart in church with this crowd. Plus, I'd had enough beers - couldn't have found the direction of Mecca with a compass.

05 July, 2008 10:26  
Blogger Medbh said...

How fucking rude. My policy is non participation but leaving the room sounds even better.
Fight on!

05 July, 2008 15:27  
Blogger laughykate said...

Well done for not geting yourself in trouble Andraste. Unfortunately it appears that I have a natural gift for getting myself in trouble around religion. I think the worst time was at my niece's christening. I arrived late (with an old friend)- and we were doing our best to sneak in to the church inconspicuously and failing spectacularly badly. The god guy got up and said, 'First of all I'd like to welcome all the fathers here on Fathers' Day.'

Our family was gathered from all over the country and naturally I had completely forgotten it was Fathers' Day. I turned to my friend and, without engaging the brain, immediately blerted out, 'FUCK!!'

You.Could.Have.Heard.A.Pin.Drop.

My mate physically distanced himself from me on the pew. He was mortified, as were most people within earshot. I proceeded to then get the totally inappropriate giggles, all by myself.

All I could think of was, 'This service WILL end. I will laugh about this one day.'

After the longest church service in the history of mankind dragged to an end, my mortified friend marched up to my father and said, 'Did you hear what your daughter said?'

And he replied, 'I did. And I thought, that's my girl.'

Bless him.

Needless to say, my sister's second daughter's christening strangely coincided with a time when I was out of the country.

07 July, 2008 03:37  
Blogger Mr. Beer N. Hockey said...

It took some looking but the house I live in is beyond the reach of church bells. It is lovely. As for grace said before dinner: no amens or drooped head for this dude: I look at the participants like they just might be monkeys in a zoo.

08 July, 2008 23:43  
Blogger Medbh said...

LaughyKate, that's so funny.

09 July, 2008 10:11  
Blogger Kim Ayres said...

Don't beat yourself up. If I went to a Hindu barbeque (obviously no beefburgers), I'd join in with whatever was deemed polite, likewise Muslim (no sausages), Buddhist, Sikh or any other.

However, I know a few vegetarians who would make their beliefs felt...

09 July, 2008 13:37  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Oh the fucking woo, it really really really burns. My sympathy and also my pride, well done for not throwing or blowing a gasket. Fuck it, you know and I know it ain't real, if they want a mumbo jumbo wank fest leave them on.
I just hope you had a good time for the rest of the event.

09 July, 2008 16:07  
Blogger fatmammycat said...

Oh wait, and in answer to your actually question, I'd have gone of to get another beer while the woo clan mouthed their pious claptrap.

09 July, 2008 16:09  
Blogger Mr. Beer N. Hockey said...

Good answer Fat Mammy.

09 July, 2008 21:33  
Blogger Sassy Sundry said...

Got it. Coming from a family of religious folk, I've come up with a reasonable compromise. They pray, I don't. I don't bow my head, hold hands, any of it. I just keep quiet until they are done. I'm waiting for the day someone asks me to pray, though. I'm going to address the Flying Spaghetti Monster and thank it for making our food.

09 July, 2008 22:24  
Blogger David Sullivan said...

You mean when someone said "lets say grace" 40 of the 50 people there didn't yell out "GRACE!?

10 July, 2008 18:24  

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