Last week in church we got the giggles – three of us – Michelle, Stephanie and me. Someone up front struck the funny bone, and we got tickled. This is not an uncommon occurrence for our family. It is genetic; we got it from my mother.
Funerals and weddings were the worst with her.
At one matrimonial service the pianist was also the organist. The problem was that the organ and piano were on opposite side of the church. This musician also had a very noisy dress. When she walked, it swooshed. Four times during the service she paraded in front of the lectern, in front of the huge flower arrangement, and in front of the bride and groom, to change instruments.
Swoosh, swoosh, swoosh, swoosh, swoosh – swoosh – swoosh
It was the loudest piece of clothing I’d ever heard. The more she swooshed, the more we snickered.
At a distant cousins wedding I became tickled when the Kimball organ was turned on. Boom da da boom da da boom boom boom…
It was just like walking through the mall. After the beat began, the “organist” began tapping out the melody of Here Comes the Bride.
Boom da da boom da da boom – here comes the bride, all dressed in white, sweetly serene in the soft glowing light… (bet you didn’t know the third line, huh?)
As if that wasn’t enough, I had overheard my parents trying to recall the mother of the bride – “I’m not sure I know her. What does she look like?” my dad asked my grandmother.
“She’s blonde, medium build…”
“You know, she has one green eye and one brown one.”
“Oh, yes!” Something about her description resonated.
As if the ongoing syncopation wasn’t enough, when the bride’s mother headed down the aisle, I caught a glance of her multi-colored irises. I was done.
These days I find two different eyes sort of cool, intriguing. In my adolescence, it just got me tickled. I’d never seen that before.
My grandmother glared at me like I’d stood up nude on the pew. That made my mom snicker, and then it was all over.
I left the church for the remainder of the service. Grandmother Tanner expressed her dismay the minute she was released from the ceremony (as if I didn’t already know she was made).
The giggles can be brought about by something very small. One Sunday I might break out with the Korean verse of the hymn printed at the bottom of the page. One of us might turn to the wrong hymn and the innocent bystander belts out a wrong word or two before they realize the joke. A couple of Sundays there was a stench in the pew – it smelled like a dead animal. As various family members began sniffing around and looking at each other as if to say, “Is it you?,” the laughter began.
When DJ was an infant, we took her to the 7 PM Christmas Eve service. When the soloist hit the high note in O Holy Night, our baby screamed out seemingly trying to match the operatic singer. It ruined the moment which I felt bad about. But I laughed until we finally just went home.
Once it starts, it is difficult to control.
Last week, to control my silliness, I grabbed the bible and began reading the Psalms. They are not funny… at all. I scowled at the kids who looked at me like I was Benedict Arnold.
Sometimes I worry that God gets a little annoyed at our Sunday morning antics. But then I figure He saw the same thing we did. He’s probably laughing along with us.