Why Do Black Folks Act A Fool At Funerals?

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    Hi Everyone!  Yes I know I’ve been a little M.I.A. lately.  I’ve been working harder than hard on a really fun, dynamic and much needed talk show for BET called “My Black Is Beautiful”.  The hosts of the show are Tasha Smith (Why Did I Get Married 1 & 2), Kim Coles (Living Single), Leela James (R&B diva “Tell Me You Love Me”) and Alesha Renee (Red Carpet Diva and Actress).  My Black Is Beautiful can be likened to “The View” meets Essence Magazine.  But enough about me and what I’m doing.

    Today I talked to my best friend.  She and I have been friends since the first day of high school.  So you could imagine how badly I felt when she called me and told me that her uncle passed away.  She seemed to handle it all fairly well.  But that’s how she is.  She will always hold herself together and find a way through.  However I don’t think she was prepared for the insanity that ensued at her uncle’s funeral.

    Now we all know there are folks who have to put on a show at funerals and try to jump in the coffin and scream “Mama take me with you”  or “Why Lord, Why!”  Seriously, who hasn’t had to sit through a million renditions of “I Won’t Complain”?  But when my best friend told me what I’m about to share with you, I told her she’s lying.  There’s no way that this happened at a funeral.  I’ve always thought it strange that black folks take pictures of the deceased while they are lying in their coffin.  I remember growing up and seeing pictures of deceased relatives in their coffin while flipping through the family photo album.  It spooked me out then and it spooks me out now.  Is that just a black thing?   A southern thing?  Do white folks or other cultures do this?

    Okay so we are all not that shocked that some folks take pictures of the deceased lying in their casket.  But how would you feel if you’re minding your own business at your uncle’s funeral and you notice a woman constantly walking up to the casket with a somewhat professional camera, just a snapping photos?  Moreover how would you feel if the woman has a printer and walks up to the casket and puts a picture on the casket as a form of advertisement?  Yes there was a woman at my best friend’s uncle funeral not only taking pictures of the deceased but had the unmitigated gall to sell the photos to the family and friends who were there to mourn their loss.  I thought I’d heard and seen it all but this just takes the cake!  Will you all chime in and let me know if you have crazy funeral stories?  Has something like this happened at a homegoing service you’ve attended?

    Believe it or not the story gets better.  Maybe better is not the correct word.  Maybe the story gets more funeral crazy interesting.  The pastor comes out of his office in full robe and shoulder length jheri curl.  Yes in 2010 the brother was sporting a jheri curl.  And it was shoulder length!  So Reverend Chicken Wing starts the funeral service by telling everyone in attendance for the funeral of my best friend’s uncle that he knows he’s pretty and that’s why there are mirrors installed all around the church because he likes to look at himself.  If you have the scene of Arsenio Hall as the bootleg pastor talkin’ ‘bout “He helped Giligan get off the island” in Coming To America dancing around in your head then you’re on the right track.
    Here’s my humble opinion:  I believe the Jewish community has it right.  Just bury me in a plain pine box and do it quickly so that all the crazy relatives and overzealous choir singers and Pastor Such ‘n Such can’t come out and act a fool at my funeral.  Chile Please!

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