Relatively Speaking

Not long ago we mentioned we had a small handful of wedding events over just a couple of weeks.  We know the story that implies if it weren’t for weddings and funerals, nobody would ever see any relatives.  We also know there are some relatives who are probably best left uncovered except for the special occasions.  Then there are other relatives who can’t be put away.  Ever.  And then there are those who fall into the “Over there, two tables away, in the blue dress.  Who is she?” category.  Those are today’s topic.

One of our events was a rehearsal dinner.  What was once a nice, civilized way of getting some quality time with the happy couple, their parents, and the rest of the wedding party has grown up to become a mini-family reunion .  Some of the other but still closer members of the family are now joining the traditional rehearsing folk for an extra dose of fellowship among family members.

Whether at the newly expanded rehearsal dinner, the traditional family reunion, the now in season graduation party, or the unconstrained Christmas open house, we are finding ourselves in more situations wondering, “Over there, two tables away, in the blue dress.  Who is she?”

We have the solution.  Of course we do.  We never bring up something for which we don’t already have an answer.  That’s one of the perks of knowing the question before anybody else.  The solution of course is the use of name tags.  Yes, we know that some families already have discovered this and already use name tags.  These are different.  These include the connection between guest and point person of honor.  For example, at our attended function, She of We’s name tag would read “She, Aunt of Groom.”  At a graduation party, one might read “He, second cousin of father of graduate.”   At a family reunion where there is not always the central character that drives the reason for the party, there are always characters enough who everybody in the extended family will know or remember.  There it might read, “He, son of Cleo, the older one who took that job on the barge when everybody said she was being an asp for doing.”

On the other hand, as long as the party isn’t too big, sometimes it’s fun to wonder, ““Over there, two tables away, in the blue dress.  Who is she?”  This is especially true when the entire  table gets involved with the discussion of just who she is.  It’s exceptionally especially true if there is somebody at the table who knows the lady in the blue dress and the others can convince him or her that is wrong and the lady in the blue dress is really someone else.

We know some people will just go up to the lady in the blue dress, politely handle some obviously needed introductions, and go on to apologize for not remembering right from the start. Some would say that’s the right thing to do.

Yeah, but being right around the relatives is sometimes overrated anyway.

Now, that’s what we think.  Really.  How ‘bout you?


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