Sunday, June 03, 2007


The sun is hot already and the sky is a deep blue and I don't have to go to work. Positively My Most Favourite Kind of Day unless...........

I am faced with the prospect of taking the kids to see their 'other' family, AKA my in-laws.

Here is my advice to anyone ever considering getting married. When meeting the prospective in-laws ask your self "Are these people devout/deluded Roman Catholics?"

If the answer is "Yes" run a country mile, and NEVER go back.

I swear that the uptight lack of real warmth and inability to communicate with anyone who does not share their faith can all be explained by their religious beliefs.

Example - one of their daughters got pregnant before she was married...her dad refused to see his first grandchild who was the result of said pregnancy for over 18 months.

Another example - another sister has been married for 20 years. No one in the family knows what she and her husband do for a living because 'she doesn't like talking about it,' so therefore no one asks (although god knows I have tried to find out in my time).

Another example - a brother and his wife put each spoon away in the bowl of the spoon below it in the drawer to form a perfect pile of spoons. Naturally they do not have spoons that don't match. (OK, so this may not be down to religion but it is bloody madness isn't it?!?)

Most recent example - another sister (yes, true Catholics) has had major mental breakdown. But she doesn't want to see a doctor and so no one has insisted she see one - even though she is the mother of four kids who need a fully functioning mum. I have been warned off mentioning it at all following my rather strong expression of concern.

I have run out of excuses not to take the kids over to see them. Painting the bannister's has already been used (I kid you not, although it wasn't one of mine).So here goes.

*Grits teeth and starts to practice false smiles.*


bao chi said...

Are you sure that they aren't some kind of mixed media, as we stringers tenderly put it, er ie Mormons, Moonies (perhaps Sun Myung Moon was developing a new branch called the Spoonies?), (the perfect alignment of those spoons suggests they may be Scientologists), Born again somethings, Jo-Jo's, Davidians (have they ever been to Waco, Texas?). Thats enough drivel for sunday morning. On my first free weekend since my return from the land of the rising weirdo, we are off to Statford-on-Avon, to eat pork and drink alcohol, whilst carefully avoiding all places or Worship. You have made me laugh again before the blogging starts (when I get time).

Steg said...

Ooh, scary people!
I could offer a list of excuses you could make but I know what it's like - occasionally you have to do these things. Good luck.

Gill said...

It doesn't take being a Catholic to explain a lack of warmth or communication believe me- I just spent time with non-christian in laws! Yours sound like they belong to the church of control freaks, like my friend's first husband who had to have seperate mugs for tea and coffee and wouldn't allow marmalade in the house.

George Walks said...

I recently had a full-on religion conversation with a work colleague. He could not believe that I believed his escape from a tricky mountain situation after praying was just a coincidence. Right....

Good luck.

Yorkshire Pudding said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Yorkshire Pudding said...

PractiSe false smiles dear! Verb not noun! But that is not important... Ironically, religion is often the root of all evil - more than money. It stops people from being who they would be if they weren't shackled by suffocating legend and half-baked moral codes. Still it is important that your kids are fed with understanding of how they link with the great chain of life and this must include the in-laws... What will these in-laws make of Reidski?

Prada Pixie said...

Sounds like a day made in... well somewhere.

The only good thing to do is use the in laws of examples of how not to be and suggest to the kids that your way of life is probably far more spiritual than any catholic mumbo jumbo.
Spoken by the daughter of an Irish Catholic mother and an English Protestant father . Whose mother was excommunicated on her marriage. So I'm not at all bigoted!!!

Steve said...

YP, form a Church. I will be your Matthew.

J.J said...

Bao chi - Spoonies...I like it :-)

Steg - terrifying! Still, duty done for the next few months at least.

Gill, SEPERATE MUGS FOR TEA AND COFFEE????!!!! Bloody hell!

Oh George, what can one say to such people?

YP - I will go and stand in the dunce's corner. As to what they will make of Reidski - I suspect he would be about as welcome in their home as the anti-christ.

PP, a typically compassionate response by the catholic church to your parents falling in love then.

Steve, spread the word mate!

Reidski said...

Let us all pray!

David Duff said...

Comforting to know that 'Yorkshire Pudding' is running true to form by getting something else arse about face.

"[R]eligion is often the root of all evil". No, but evil people often use religion as an excuse for their evil.

"It [religion] stops people from being who they would be if they weren't shackled by suffocating legend and half-baked moral codes." No again. Individuals are what they are irrespective of their religion, but their *behaviour* can be altered by external influences such as those "half-baked moral codes" that, for example, stop me from coming round to murder 'Yorkshire Pudding', much as I would like to!

Honestly! And this man actually teaches children. Still, he does ask one amusing question, "What will these in-laws make of Reidski?" No, don't tell me, let me guess ...

rilly super said...

the only thing that can save you is a miracle jj, but of course you'd need to visit your in-laws first to arrange one.

JoeinVegas said...

Feel lucky that you don't have any Mormons over there in the tree.
But seriously, are you allowed to have different kinds of spoons? Isn't that illegal or something?

J.J said...

Reidski - I would if I thought it would help!

David, most unfair - YP is obviously a stickler for correct use of English...see his corrections above.

Rilly, some useful kind of miracle please - I was always impressed by that water into wine party trick myself.

Joe, I am sorry to say that I struggle to find two spoons that match in my house. I need a miracle to produce matching spoons!