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Monday, March 3, 2014

Charm School: How to Behave at a Funeral


Charm School is my favorite category of posts, in which I pretend to know anything about how to be classy in public. You will likely learn nothing from reading this.

presents ...


Everyone dies eventually. Usually, this is sad (but sometimes the person who died was mean to you in elementary school so even though you pretend to be sad on the outside, you're actually kind of glad on the inside but then you worry that being glad someone died is bad karma so you have to go to church to repent but there's traffic and you give up and get Taco Bell instead).

When people die, their loved ones host funerals where people come together to remember the dead person and highlight their life's accomplishments and maybe ogle the dead body a little.

"Even in death, her rack looked phenomenal."

Here are some rules on how to behave yourself properly at a funeral:


Dress conservatively and in dark colors

You don't have to wear black, but there is no reason on earth to wear something like this:

"But Patent," you say in a plaintive tone, "wearing black to funerals is so outdated! My grandmother would have wanted me to wear my fuchsia mini-dress!"

Oh, I believe you. I bet your grandma's last words were something like "tell my granddaughter to show off that boob job at my funeral. She looks smokin' hot in that fuchsia mini-dress and I want EVERYONE'S eyes on her."


Don't be an asshole. This isn't about you, it's about the person who died. Everyone else is going to be wearing dark colors, so if you don't blend in, then everyone will think you're trying to draw attention to yourself (which you are). At someone else's funeral.

You f**king asshole.


Do not photograph the deceased

The Victorians liked to take pictures of dead people. This was a very creepy practice that has thankfully been discontinued.

Maybe shake a rattle or something to get the little ones' attention?
I'm so sorry. This photo makes me very uncomfortable.

... until recently. The new hip thing is to take a selfie at a funeral, preferably with the deceased visible in the background.

So much no.

Look, if you want to take some photos with family at a funeral, be my guest. Odds are you'll never get all those people together again until another family member dies, so it's totally understandable to want to take some photos together. I'm sure Grandma actually would approve of this practice.

I'm sure Nelson Mandela would have been fine with it too.




It's like, how are you supposed to remember what he looked like? From photos of him when he was still alive? Get out of here, you idiot.


Do not walk across people's graves

Many years ago, I went to a funeral at a Jewish cemetery. While there, I learned two things: first, that Jewish graves are often marked by stones that lie flat on the ground instead of perpendicularly up in the air, and second, that people are unimaginable assholes.

As we made our way to the temple for the service, people were like, "staying on these paved paths is not the most direct route, so instead I am going to take a shortcut to save myself thirty feet of walking. I am going to walk across the graves of many strangers."

I can tell.

At first, it wasn't obvious that they were walking across graves, because as I mentioned, the tombstones were flat on the grass and hard to see until you were on top of them. But when I say "until you were on top of them," I mean that literally people were stepping on the tombstones.

A whole crowd of people. As soon as I realized what was happening, I was so appalled that I actually yelled "STOP WALKING ON THE GRASS! YOU ARE WALKING ACROSS PEOPLE'S GRAVES AND STEPPING ON THEIR TOMBSTONES!!!" Perhaps one or two people heeded my call and scurried back to the paved path, having the grace to appear embarrassed. But the rest of the crowd just gave me a dirty look and kept on stomping their f**king high heels into the soft dirt of people's final resting places.

I mean f**k, why not just drop your pants and take a f**king dump while you're at it.

This is the number 1 reason why I want to be cremated and have my ashes scattered. Because even when I'm dead, I will be so goddamned angry if a bunch of lazy idiots walk across my grave on their way to the goddamned gelato vendor.

Don't talk smack about the dead

Unless you want to get ghost-slapped.


Resist the urge to pull the corpse out of the casket and reenact scenes from Weekend at Bernie's with it

You know you were tempted.

Haha! Okay maybe just for a few seconds but seriously, it's important to have respect for the dead. So ... let's say ... max ten seconds reenacting Weekend at Bernie's? That seems fair to me.

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