It’s Monday and I’m dragging. So I figured I’d blog. BTW, I am now dreaming about blogging. In a recent dream, I remember something worthy of blogging happened, and then I thought to myself, in my dream – this is totally bloggable. I ended up waking up at that point and was close to disrupting my sleep even more by actually blogging about how I am now dreaming about blogging.
“Having said that” (see Curb season 7 finale), I finally made it to the church near my apartment yesterday. I have not yet been to a mass there because they do not offer an evening mass. However, since I’ve sort of slowed down with the partying recently, I was able to make the 12:30pm. So it is advertised as a “gospel” mass, so I assumed that I would be a minority. I was correct. Not that being the minority bothers me; when I was in Atlanta I went to black baptist churches when I was “shopping for a religion,” and there I was literally THE only white person. So this was a walk in the park.
Priest starts his homily. Normally, the homilies at mass will last no longer than five minutes. This one lasted at least 20 minutes, I would venture to say even close to 30, complete with amens, clapping, and general vocal approval from the crowd. Hmm, that is something new for a Catholic mass. Usually the masses I go to are so regimented, no one claps or utters a word during the homily. If you do, people stare at you. It just doesn’t happen.
So there is this white guy sitting in the pew in front of me. During this hour long homily, I notice he is biting the skin on his hands. I figure it’s just a random thing. Nope, I look back and he’s basically gnawing at both of his palms and fingers. I do some more investigative work and see that his palms and fingers are basically raw, red, with flaking skin everywhere. He is eating his hands. Now, if you’ve ever been to a Catholic mass, you know that at some point, you may have to hold hands during the “Our Father,” and you definitely will have to shake hands to offer the sign of peace. Standard Catholic mass, even if it’s part baptist. So here I am, fading out on the homily, wondering how I can avoid shaking this guy’s hand. I mean, that is disgusting. It is disgusting enough that I have to shake everyone’s hand around me, but there is no way in hell I am shaking someone’s hand when he is literally eating it first.
So the “Our Father” comes around, and sure enough, we all hold hands. I guess recently I’ve been going to stuffy white masses, and we just don’t do that anymore. But not in this open baptist/Catholic church; we all have to hold hands. It doesn’t help that it is 5,000 degrees in there. I know black people like the heat, but this is ridiculous. So my hands are profusely sweating at this point, I felt bad for the two people beside me who were subjected to my dripping wet, sweaty palms. After that, we shake hands with everyone to offer the sign of peace. I miraculously managed to avoid the hand eater. Not sure how I pulled that one off. I would conveniently turn to someone else when I saw him turning my way to shake, since I was clearly the only person he missed. Just watched his moves out of the corner of my eye. I was proud of myself. I did feel bad about it though, but I felt disgusting enough shaking everyone’s hands around me, let alone someone who was biting the skin off his hands. No thank you. Score one for the team.
Finally, the end of the mass is nearing. At this point, it’s been well over an hour and a half. I have NEVER been to a mass that has lasted that long. So at this point, all I could think about was washing my hands and getting out of there so I could go cook the meal for my impending, late guest. But, it’s not over yet. They decide to prolong the mass even further by making all of the newcomers STAND UP in front of everyone. I literally think I said “really?” outloud when they asked us to do this. Sure, I could have just not stood up, but then I would be lying in a church – no good. So standing up in front of about 1,000 people is bad enough. But when they started bringing the microphone around so that all the newcomers could introduce themselves and state where they were from, I thought it was some cruel joke. So now I’m not only touching everyone’s hands around me, but I’m also touching the damn microphone that everyone else and their mother had touched before me. Sure, I realize I am weird, but this was what I was thinking. Further, as you may know, I am not exactly fond of public speaking. So that was a real joy.
After this minor embarrassment, they finally allow us to leave. I like the whole baptist, singy/dancy/clappy idea, and I love black people, but I probably won’t be going back to that mass anytime soon, unless it is my only option. I value my Sunday chill time too much, no offense God.