Just got back from Christmas Eve Mass. In the middle of the homily the Priest takes off his shoes, he’s completely barefoot, and he starts talking about his “beautiful feet.” My jaw hit the goddam floor. I’d say that I almost fell off my pew, but I got there so late I didn’t even get a seat. My whole week has been 100% focused on beautiful feet with this Rex Ryan fiasco. And so there I am trying to check my smut filled life at the door and be a good Christian, and all I can think about is Rex smelling toes and t shirt sales and I just lose it. I’m holding in my laughter like a 5 year old and I’m tapping my brother on the shoulder like “do you fucking believe this!?” and I’m right back to usual heathen self. So now I’m just focused on getting out of there without embarrassing my family, so I kick into bad Christian survival mode. Here’s everything you need to know:
1. Not Knowing When To Sit, Stand Or Kneel- This is the most basic problem for anybody who only goes twice a year. Its like a goddam dance routine for an hour straight. Up down, up down, kneel, up, down. Disaster. Especially at Christmas because the majority of the whole congregation doesn’t know, so they are looking around to follow everyone elses lead. Its like the Blind leading the Blind and everyone ends up bent over, half sitting, half standing, in some sort of limbo. Much like the afterlife that awaits us all. Solution: Find the oldest old lady in the joint, and follow her lead. The older the better. Old people go to church like 10 times a week and when they were kids it was still in Latin and shit. They know the whole process better than the priest himself. Sit, Stand, and Kneel with her and you’re good to go.
2. Not Knowing Any Of The Prayers- Problem 1.A. for bad parishioners. Most of us know our Our Father and our Hail Marys. But like, the Nicine Creed and shit? That one where they say “Just say the word and I shall be healed?” Those are like full blown speeches. Who the fuck can remember those when the last time you were at church was 6 months ago. Solution: Mumble your way through the whole thing, just make sure you hit the essentials. You know, like “humina humina humina, TRESSPASSES.” “Yada, yada, yada HALLALEUJAH.” As long as you’re with the rest of the church for the keywords, you’re good.
3. Shaking Hands during Peace- Easily the most awkward part of Mass. I gotta shake hands with some rando? Touch the old lady with wrinkly hands? No thanks. And you do the awkward thing where you turn and see someone and you’re like do I shake, do I not shake? You stick your hand out and pull it back and its like you’re doing the fuckin hokey pokey. Solution – No eye contact. I have a steadfast rule: I do Peace Handshakes and Peace Kisses with my family members, I fill my quota with one stranger and one stranger only. After that, I look directly at the ground. If you don’t look at anyone, they won’t expect a handshake.
4. Always Have An Exit Strategy – Nothing worse than when you’re in the home stretch and it feels like you’re all done after Communion but you realize there’s like 10 more minutes after of no value. You gotta go back and kneel for a while as everyone else finishes getting theirs, and then there’s another prayer and a song and you gotta wait for the priest to walk the whole way down the aisle. F That. Solution: Make sure you put your jacket on before you go up for Communion. Because you’re gonna wanna get your Jesus Cracker, curl around the back of the church, and dip out to beat the traffic. Post-Communion church is like the last 2 minutes of a game when you’re up by 50. Its best to just skip out early and get to your car.
5. The Most Imporant Rule – Don’t Look At Any Girls- Without fail there’s always a couple girls you went to high school with or a couple girls who were like freshman when you were a senior in high school and now their all grown up and lookin like a smoke. And of course they’re dressed completely inappropriate and you take one look at them and your mind instantly wanders to some veryun-Christian thoughts. Tonite I saw some girl who was probably like 16 years old, looked like she was 25 and as the priest is talking about mangers and frankincense and I’m thinking about facebooking her and asking her to be a smokeshow. Terrible. Solution: No fucking clue. Haven’t figured out how to stop doing this. Any suggestions are welcome.