I have yet to go to a family gathering where something ridiculous doesn't happen. Whether it is planned (like taking a bat to my 12-year-old high school Spanish project) or unplanned (like the creation of Egg Roulette), when I'm with my family I know I'm going to end up laughing so hard my sides hurt.
This weekend was no different.
After my embarrassing emotional collapse on Friday afternoon, I gathered what was left of my dignity and headed with Jordan, my sister, and my parents to my cousin's wedding (my mom's cousin, to be exact). My maternal grandparents were visiting for the joyous event as well, fresh off a week-long trip to Israel. Papa, as we call my grandpa, was dressed to the nines in a suit with a white shirt and navy tie, complete with his signature diamond tie clasp.
I love my grandpa. He's one of the sweetest men I know. But he's often confused, as most grandpas are. (Don't worry; I'm not making fun of him. Telling you about his confused face is necessary for the story.)
The wedding ceremony went off without a hitch, and afterwards we were shuffled off to the reception hall, where we sipped punch and eyed the cake and updated ESPN to keep up on the score of the Baylor/Xavier basketball game. At one point, Jordan came up to me and said, "What does your grandpa's tie say? It looks like it says something..." He paused and shook his head. "I don't know. Just look at it. BUT," he said as I turned away, "don't be obvious about it."
Me not be obvious? Please.
I immediately turned to hunt down my grandpa, who happened to be standing directly behind me. "Papa, does your tie say something?" I leaned closer, and I saw it. My grandpa just stared at me, gave me an oblivious smile, and moved on. I ran back to Jordan, clicking my high heels loudly across the tile floor. "You were right!"
"Do you think he knows?" Jordan asked.
"I don't know."
The bride and groom came in after that and cut the cake, and I soon forgot all about my grandpa's tie. Later, the crowd moved outside, and we all stood there holding bubble tubes and waiting for the happy couple. I was in the middle of trying to get a good bubble picture when I heard an uproar from behind me.
Upon turning around, I saw at least six people--my parents, my aunt and uncle, a few cousins, and my grandma--huddled around my grandpa. I knew instantly that they'd seen the tie.
"Dad!" my mom said, surprised written all over her face.
My grandma was holding the tie two inches from her face. Once she realized what it read, she dropped it and said in a scandalized tone, "Duane! Where did you get that?"
"I don't know!" said my grandpa, shaking his head in disbelief between bursts of laughter. "I didn't buy it. Someone gave it to me!"
If you've stuck with me this long, it's no doubt only because you're hoping I will tell you what the tie said. And you would not be wrong. Here is a close-up of the offending clothing article. Read carefully.
How my seventy-five-year-old grandfather happened upon such a ridiculous tie will forever remain a mystery. But I bet my grandma will not feel comfortable letting him leave the house now without first checking to see if his clothing says anything questionable.
And that, my friends, is the story of my grandpa's tie.
As a reward for reading all the way through, please enjoy this picture of bubbles.