Every year on Christmas Day my extremely religious Aunty turns our place into a shrine? Can you give me some tips on how to handle her?
Signed, Losing my religion
I hear you man. I have an Uncle like this. The old guy spoiled many a Christmas lunch as he insisted on us all joining hands around the Christmas table over grace while the beer got warm and the food went cold.
It’s hard to shake this sort of belief in some but here are a few tips to try your next Christmas day.
Start to train your dear Aunt to keep it short on the biblical references and the overly religious chatter. Find some “winding-up” music, like they play at the Oscars and every time Auntie is Babylon-ing on, throw to the music as your segue. This can be particularly useful at the blessing if she’s turning it into a sermon. Some of the late Christopher Lee’s heavy metal work may be useful here.
I’ve seen this approach work but it can take time and you may not achieve much at one sitting. Sometimes, you need to employ more dramatic tactics to make her think twice about laying on the religious fervour. Try these ideas:
- Have one of your family members fake the stigmata over pre-lunch drinks and watch as Aunty copes with the streams of blood flowing from the hands and feet of your loved ones
- Have the person sitting next to Aunty spontaneously combust as an act of the Almighty (tip: have one or two practices prior to the big day for this one)
- If she’s still not shaken, time to up the Aunty ante. Just nail the old bag to a cross and let her experience what the good Lord went through, at least for an hour or two
Better still, make it a spinning cross and let the kids interact with their new dart set.