Monday, October 15, 2007

Who's your Daddy or whatever.....?

I read the paper faithfully everyday. I stopped watching the news on TV because it's so damned depressing to watch all the same stuff over and over again. I tried to watch on other channels and they're doing the same stories. Isn't there any other news to report in the world other than the few same stories carried by every channel?

I find it a bit strange, in the whole world there are only four or five news worthy stories to report. Well, maybe I'm wrong and there are only four or five things going on in the world on any given day. But I don't think so.That's why I stopped watching the news reported on TV, I get more information from the newspaper. I read the whole thing, sometimes though, I read the headline of a story and decide whether or not to pursue it.

I've taken to reading the little write ups under the engagement photos as well as those under the baby photos. I'm not so sure I could keep up with who is who unless I had a score card for some of these folks. Let's talk about the engagement ones first.

You know what I mean, you see a lovely couple standing or sitting on top of each other with smiles plastered all over their faces. The photo is usually a professional one so you see them probably in the best light. Under the photo it says, "Joe Smith and Amanda Small engaged". It goes on, the parents of Joe Smith, Jim Smith, his wife Annabell Carling-Smith of Cassenova and Courtney Alveres-Smith-Porter and her husband Elijah Porter of Syracuse, step-father Rodrigo Alveres and his wife Sophia Johnson-Alveres and Sharon Coe-Small-Stanhope and her husband Jacob Stanhope, and Michael Small and his wife Elizabeth Cosby-Tryon-Small would like to announce the engagement of their son, step-son, daughter, step-daughter. I get lost after the first two and who the Hell cares anyway?

The babies are ever worse. They name the parents, the step parents, the grandparents, the step grandparents, the other step parents the god parents, sometimes the Aunts, Uncles, the brothers, sisters, step siblings, the whole gamut. I understand that everyone is elated at the new arrival but honest to God doesn't it seem that you could get your name into the paper in a better way than as a laundry list tagged to the diaper of a baby?

When I first started reading all bits of enlightening information in the "Society Column" as it was once described in another life I thought that these lists of names after the baby or the engaged couple was uncommon. However, in the last few months I realize that I have been sadly mistaken. It seems that everyone today has multiple names to add to their family tree. Now, don't misunderstand me, I do believe it takes a village to raise a kid and all that, but do I need to know everyone's name who wiped the nose or the butt of a kid?

I recently had the opportunity to attend the shower of one of my young relatives. There I was in the presence of a bunch of folks I had never set eyes on before. These were people that were going to become part of my extended family, sort of. I looked around the room trying to figure out who was who. I realize at these affairs there are many folks you don't know, that's why we have them, so people can get to know each other, but honestly this was more than I could grasp.

The soon to be groom had: a natural mother, a natural father, a step-mother, another step-mother, a step-father, another step-father, 2 grandmothers,great grandmother, 2 step grandmothers, 2 grandfathers, great grandfather, 2 step grandfather's, 6 full blooded aunts, 4 full blooded uncles (they're from both sets of natural grandparents) , 12 half aunts, 5half uncles (still paying attention?), 3 sisters,2 brothers, 5half brothers, then there was the adopted lie.

Just family alone, there were over 150 people from the one side. I sat with my daughter and we looked at each other in astonishment. I kept looking over the crowd and all I saw were warrens of rabbits. I had to physically close my mouth with my hand.

Honest to God, I know that I live differently than some other folks, but I venture to think that this was a bit excessive. I started to wonder about all the women that had sex with the groom's Dad. I thought, "Man I can't wait to see this guy. He's got to be something special"...(NOT---by the way).

As I was looking around I thought about the ages of the group. The great grandparents didn't look like the visions I had of great-grandparents. I thought of a great grandmother's as wizened old sages, rocking away the hours, not so this bunch. The one great (it might have been great great) grandmother had on a pair of fuchsia Capri pants, a pink and fuchsia low cut top with a gold belt, platform (albeit low heels) shoes with a fuchsia bow on the front. Her hair was piled high atop her head with a pink bow holding it all precariously in a bunch at the back, small tendrils of curls cascading down her back. Go, Granny go! She was not alone in her youthful appearance. A couple of the "older" women looked and dressed younger than their daughters and granddaughters. Bizarre...

This was at the shower, I sat in wonder at what I might see at the wedding when the "men-folk" would be in attendance..... to be continued....