Usually before the crowd shows up for a funeral, the family will come and see the person first to make sure everything is to their satisfaction. This one time in particular, a man and wife came early to see the wife’s mother who had died. But in this case, my dad had them come early and also leave before everyone else arrived because the husband was suffering from tuberculosis, which is highly contagious. Hello? Would you let someone with tuberculosis into your house? But you know, he had to. So, that was why they came early; so they could infect us but not their friends.
Well, one of the symptoms of that contagious disease is unexpected weight loss and the man was really skinny. According to my dad, “he was a little scrawny guy, no bigger than a string bean.” But the wife was a big one. My dad said she was a solid 350 pounds. Sounds like a sexy couple, doesn’t it?
My dad told them that he would step into the other room so that they could be alone with her mother, plus he wanted to get away from the TB guy. Seriously, my dad was exposed to some gross stuff in his biz. He once cleaned a guy’s brains off the ceiling who shot himself. He did this to make money while he was starting the business. And don’t think we didn’t hear about it every time we complained about a job. If any of us ever started bitching too much about our job, no matter what it was, we heard the old “yeah, well, I cleaned a man’s brains off the ceiling to put food on the table for you kids…you do what you have to do!” Obviously, I heard that message loud and clear because I’ve had a lot of shitty jobs to keep food on my table…and usually on my shirt too. Thank you, I’ll be here all week :)
So anyway, my dad left the room and he heard the wife really sobbing, then it got quiet and after about a minute he heard a really loud thud! He ran back into the room and the big lady had fainted in front of the casket. My dad was looking around for the husband and suddenly he heard a weak voice pleading, “Help, help.” Yep, she fainted on top of him! My dad couldn’t even see the string bean but immediately started trying desperately to lift the woman off of her husband, who really couldn’t breathe. Tuberculosis already inhibits your breathing, so the last thing that guy needed was to be trying to catch his fat wife before she passed out. That’s what he told my dad later on, that he was trying to catch her. Sweet, but stupid. If you have tuberculosis, you can’t risk catching an unstable, sad, probably hungry, fat lady that’s close to fainting.
My dad couldn’t lift her off of him so he called my mother to help. She came running down the stairs, probably with a cigarette in her hand, and they both had to roll the big woman off of her now practically dead husband. Being a nurse, my mother immediately went for the smelling salts that we kept on hand. This brought her around…well that, and a box of donuts. Just kidding. Once she came to, the man regained his labored breathing and they took their tuberculosis and left.
My dad would always laugh when he told that story and I hope you did too, but if you really want to laugh, you have to watch this video. If you’re ever feeling sad, go to YouTube and just type in “people falling down” and you will laugh. For your viewing pleasure…(if you don’t laugh at this, there’s something wrong with you, or maybe it’s me….but I dont’ think so)