Deer Hunting Season Is No Time For A Wedding

by admin on October 18, 2012

After scouring your library of stories, gasping at the audacity of some and chuckling at the cluelessness of others I have decided to share the horrible faux pas that happened at my very own wedding.

Now I feel I should explain here that I live in a very rural area of the South. A place where the national sport is hunting, and men with spit bottles are a common sight. The populace is an interesting one and their grasp of etiquette is diverse to say the least. We range from old style southern belles who are impeccable in their taste and grooming at all times, to their trashier cousins who wouldn’t understand basic etiquette if it paraded by and offered them free candy.

Unfortunately for me, a good chunk of my family lies within the latter territory. I should also mention that my immediate family (Father, mother, brother and myself) relocated to this area from a different state to take care of my aging grandparents who had retired here. This did not go over well with the cousins who were already here. It wasn’t because they loved and wanted to take care of my grandparents, but rather because they felt entitled to inherit all of my grandparents estate upon their deaths. Our moving here was seen as interloping and they have always treated us as outsiders rather than family. I could go into the details of what happened when my grandparents finally did pass away and how they fought over every single scrap, but that is a long story of a different sort and I really should submit it at some other time.

I sent out 140 invites with RSVP cards. I received absolutely no RSVP’s back from that portion of my family. Naturally this came as no surprise to us at all.

Our wedding was a small informal gathering and since my immediate family who are all food enthusiasts were providing all the food we determined that our safest course of action was to provide food for an additional 60 people. This wasn’t because we wanted leftovers, it was because we knew that no RSVP’S didn’t mean they wouldn’t show and to ensure that there were plenty of seconds for those so inclined.

Our careful planning was spot on it turns out. Most all of the cousins did indeed show. Their showing up without an RSVP isn’t the etiquette breach in this story though. I don’t believe their inability to return the RSVP was malicious at all. No, rather it was their own lack of knowledge on proper decorum that caused it and truthfully as you can tell by our food preparation was expected.

In fact, except for the one incident where one of my well meaning cousins switched my carefully planned wedding cd (we couldn’t afford a band or dj) with a mixed classical music cd from Walmart there were no problems. Incidentally this resulted in the 1812 overture playing on the sound system blaring at my guests with its loud cannon fire. Which in itself is actually quite funny. I know I was a mass of giggling as I ran to correct the mistake. I always thought it’d have been great to follow it up after with the Ramones, “I wanna be sedated”, just for laughs. Too bad I didn’t think of that at the time.

No, the faux pas happened directly after my husband and I left. My family was cleaning up the hall, packing up leftover food and the like when my cousin to whom I will fondly assign the initial “T” walked in. Bear in mind, this was a good 3 hours after the reception had been slated to start on the invitation, AND that his wife and kids had been there without him so he had to know the festivities were over. He was in his hunting clothes, covered in dirt and sweat. He immediately began to grab at trays of wrapped up leftovers, even going so far as to try and take one of the coolers filled with leftover beverages. My mother whom I have always thought of as a very polite bouncer stopped him immediately. She asked him very sweetly how he’d been and told him we’d missed him at the wedding and reception. His reply? “It’s deer hunting season!” So not only had he skipped my wedding to go hunting, he had the nerve to show up directly after and try to take leftover food home. My mother made him a generous plate of leftovers and sent him on his way with the portion of food that would have been his had he bothered to show up to celebrate with us. According to her he mumbled all the way out the door.   1016-12

{ 65 comments… read them below or add one }

Jdbar93 October 18, 2012 at 9:22 am

Hmmm, that takes it a step up from “how dare you schedule your wedding for the same date as (insert college football rivalry game here) ?”

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Rae October 18, 2012 at 9:39 am

Oooooooooh boy! That is terrible! I’ve heard stories before where couples have had to work their date around specific sport events so that people would be willing to go to their wedding. It is sad when something like that takes priority over everything else.

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The Elf October 22, 2012 at 12:44 pm

If people want to go deer hunting or attend a sport event or spend the day contemplating their navel instead of going to the wedding, that’s on them. Just don’t show up after it’s over and expect food! That’s the real problem!

Your mother handled the issue rather adroitly, I think.

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Mary October 18, 2012 at 10:11 am

This reminds me of our wedding in its relation to deer hunting. Hubby is from one state (M) while I grew up in the neighboring state (W) where the wedding would be held. We scheduled our wedding for the wedding on the second Saturday in November because all of the previous dates were booked at my church and didn’t want to go later due to the possibility of snow interfering with the travel of guests.
Not being from a hunting family (and hubby didn’t even notice the issue) we had scheduled our wedding for the deer hunting opener in the state of M. (W’s opener was several weeks later). Now in the state of M, hunters could only hunt the first or second weekend, not both. There were several cousins and friends of hubby that did not attend our wedding because it was the same day as opener (and were very open about that). Of course I kept my thoughts to myself that of course every deer in the state was going to be killed that first weekend and there wouldn’t be any left the second weekend!
Even my FIL expressed concern about the date but of course came to the wedding. I will point out that he managed to get two deer the following weekend, so obviously our wedding did not interfere with his hunting!

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Cat October 18, 2012 at 10:17 am

Alas, I share with you the fact that some of my relatives were what my mother fondly referred to as PWT. For those of you not from the American South, that stands for Poor White Trash, and it comes from a more racially divided South than one would find today.Today, it’s just Trash.
My relatives have relied for years on the useful tool of making up lies about anyone they have decided to dislike. A sister (let’s call her Gertrude) did not answer an aunt’s chatty and casual letter because she had a daughter graduating from college, one getting married, and all the family coming to stay because it was Christmas that all this was happening.
I received an email that from auntie that “Gertrude” is a liar just like “Hortense”!
When I asked what lies “Gertrude” had told, auntie informed me that “Gertrude” did not know her well enough to make up lies about her. Auntie just made it up to get everyone to dislike “Gertrude”.
There’s not much you can do about people like that but to keep them at a distance and not to get embroiled in situations you cannot win. Your mother handled the situation. I would not invite your deer-hunting cousin to any more celebrations.

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DowagerDutchess October 18, 2012 at 10:23 am

I know it’s an unpopular opinion, but I continue to believe it is completely inappropriate to refer to people as trash. Especially when, as here, you seem to think they really are.

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Cat October 18, 2012 at 2:05 pm

The South is full of things that we don’t usually share with outhsiders. I have a good friend who is black. He and his family are Southerners, as am I and my family.
When making plans for social events, one of us will ask the other, “White folks or CPT? “That comes from the distant past. It’s shorthand for, “Be on time or come when you want to come?” CPT stands for “Colored Peoples’ Time” and probably originated from the error when most black people worked in agarian or domestic occupations and work hours were indefinite. White men had jobs which had specific work hours and white women were usually homemakers.
It’s far out of date today, and neither of us would use it around anyone else. It’s useful only to ourselves and is a sort of in-house joke. It’s on a par with black Americans using the “N word” to one another. It’s only offensive outside of the group.

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Cat October 18, 2012 at 2:06 pm

Sorry, typo. It’s “era” and not “error”.

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Margaret October 19, 2012 at 9:12 pm

Where I live, when someone is never on time or maybe there is no definite start to an event, it gets called “Indian time.” Some native people laugh about it, some get offended if anyone non-native uses it. Some people use it in a derrogatory way, but some don’t. There really is a subset of people who do not value clock time, and if you are dealing with those people, you need to be aware of it and plan for it. I think to them, setting a fixed time is sort of like telling someone to pick apples before they are ripe — it just doesn’t make sense.

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Jones October 22, 2012 at 12:38 pm

In my area, it’s “MST?” Not Mountain Standard Time, but Mormon Standard Time. For some reason, functions that involve large groups of the locally dominant religion always start late.

MonkeysMommy October 28, 2012 at 11:32 pm

Hehehe, I’m Mormon. This is sooo true ;)

NostalgicGal November 25, 2012 at 12:58 pm

Back when I belonged to a chapter of a large group, and they were known for (acronym I don’t want to use) time which translates to ‘roughly an hour to an hour and a half later’ ..and nobody told me about that when I was the chief cook and wrangler for a meal for 40 involving about 15 dishes. I had food timed to be done at certain times, and my scheduling was out the window and I was more than FURIOUS by the time 2/3rds of my people showed to eat an hour and fifteen past. Throughout the area it got around that when our group had something and I was running the food, when I said X time it was X TIME or face the wrath.

chechina October 18, 2012 at 8:33 pm

Wow.

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clairedelune October 19, 2012 at 9:17 am

I might be misreading your comment, but it sounds like your friend is black but you are white? In this case, I’m not sure that this is comparable to the example you give, of something only be offensive “outside of the group,” since in this case you are yourself outside of the group that’s being kind of casually insulted.

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Hanna October 23, 2012 at 6:00 pm

Agreed. My MIL always used the term PWT and it was just as offensive to me (a white gal) as when she used the N word. Yes, she’s from the south, and yes, both terms are stilled used regularly today. Both offensive in my book.

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Beth October 26, 2012 at 3:14 pm

All of the comments above are ill-considered. People, no matter what their socio-economic statuse, are not trash. And people are either considerate (and on time) or not considerate (not on time)…it has nothing to do with ethnicity or religious affiliation. You may think you are being funny, but you are not.

Wendy October 18, 2012 at 10:23 am

Wow. And I thought it was bad in Pennsylvania!

This reminds me of my cousin’s wedding where her husband got up early that morning in order to go turkey hunting and was almost late for the wedding. That was our first indication of a priority problem. The marriage limped along for a few years before he ultimately chose hunting (and his new girlfriend).

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Shiny Gloria October 18, 2012 at 11:10 am

With the OP’s superior attitude towards her family and aquaintances it’s a wonder anyone went to her wedding. After the huge build-up, I really expected a much more grievous breech of etiquette.

I heard some good advice once: Don’t sweat the small stuff. (Corollary: it’s all small stuff)

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TylerBelle October 18, 2012 at 1:11 pm

I read the story earlier and had trouble putting into words what I thought about it. Much appreciation, Shiny Gloria, you’ve done it for me. :)

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Kimstu October 18, 2012 at 3:36 pm

What do you mean, “superior attitude”? It sounds like the OP and her immediate family were gracious above and beyond the call of duty to the more etiquette-challenged members of her extended family:

1. She invited them all to her wedding even though they had apparently been hostile and unpleasant due to their greed over the possessions of her late grandparents.

2. She overlooked their failure to RSVP to her wedding invitations and made sure that there would be enough food to welcome them hospitably anyway, even though they hadn’t had the elementary courtesy to let their hosts know whether or not they would be attending.

3. When the dirty and sweaty post-hunting cousin showed up at the reception site after the bridal couple had left, evidently for absolutely no other purpose than to attempt to steal the wedding hosts’ leftover food and beer, her mother used her polite spine to check his attempted depredations graciously and was even kind enough to give him a plate of leftover food.

After all that, if the OP wants to come here (i.e., to a website that exists precisely for the purpose of anonymous complaining about etiquette violations) and titter a bit about how etiquette-challenged these relatives of hers are, I think she’s fully entitled to do so. Your rebuke about her alleged “superior attitude” is inaccurate, IMO, even aside from its spelling errors.

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TylerBelle October 18, 2012 at 9:35 pm

Yes, true, the bride seemed pretty gracious in the story. Although for me what I see is quite the shout-out of how good she behaved in comparison of how nastily her southern family did. I give kudos to the mom though.

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Terra Elizabeth October 19, 2012 at 9:29 am

I think Kimstu hit it right on the head.

I suspect that some might find this bride to be haughty due to her writing style, rather than the content of the story.

I fail to see how planning an event to accommodate relatives who lack etiquette in anyway displays a “superior attitude”, I think it shows an understanding of ones situation beautifully. Adapting and planning for contingencies such as this are the trademark of an excellent host/hostess in my opinion.

In my opinion telling someone who is willing to ignore the lack of RSVP’s from relatives to “not sweat the small stuff”, is not the appropriate response for this situation. How many stories on here are of people freaking out about RSVP’s not being sent? She just brushed this off with good humor.

I also don’t think it reads as a shout out to her good behavior. Especially considering she wasn’t there for the major Faux Pas. I’m sorry, but showing up after the wedding when you’ve skipped it just so you can try to claim leftovers you aren’t entitled to is inexcusably rude.

Overall, I like this bride’s sense of humor. Suggesting that she should have played, “I wanna be sedated”, at her own wedding is just funny.

I’ve been a professional cake decorator for well over a decade, and believe me in my time I’ve seen some serious bridezillas, or those suffering from BBS (Bratty Bride Syndrome). Believe me, this bride doesn’t even come close.

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Library Diva October 22, 2012 at 10:19 am

If OP’s family is anything like mine, it’s hard not to get locked into the superior vs. I’ll Take You Down a Peg mentality. My dad is one of five siblings, and the only one who followed the path of college, career, marriage, family in that order. He is hardly rich, but he avoided making a lot of the foolish decisions his other siblings did and as a result, is fairly well-off. As a teacher, he instilled the values of education in my sister and I, and we’ve both gotten advanced degrees.

His siblings harbor varying degrees of resentment towards him, and I have one aunt in particular who is always making snarky little remarks. She likes to bash the educational system and teacher’s unions in front of my father. She roots for a different sports team and has differing political beliefs from my father, and is always bringing these facts up. As my sister and I have gotten older, she’s turned some of this towards us.

The first time it ever happened was at Christmas, when I was in high school. My sister had recently become interested in medicine and had requested and received a copy of Grey’s Anatomy (the book) for Christmas. She was excited to have it, and when this aunt was asking about Christmas gifts, it was the first thing she proudly mentioned. My aunt said, “Oh. Was this something you ASKED FOR?” while looking at my parents, the clear presumption being that this was jammed down my sister’s throat, instead of the Seventeen subscription she was supposed to want. When my sister affirmed that it was actually her number 1 request, my aunt turned to her own daughter, and made some remark like “It’d do you good to try reading something like that for a change.” Real nice.

Over the years, we’ve had to swallow a lot of “aren’t you tired of school yet, etc.” remarks from her. Very hard not to make redneck remarks in return.

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clairedelune October 19, 2012 at 9:21 am

I noticed the superior tone as well, but at the same time, I think showing up at the end of a reception and trying to make off with all the leftovers is a pretty big breech!

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Hanna October 23, 2012 at 6:03 pm

Did not notice a superior attitude at all, but a stab at being a little humorous over the etiquette breaches of this family.

Many times I’ve heard that term “superior tone” used here and it smacks of being just as graceless as the person who supposedly used the tone in the first place.

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QuiltinNana October 18, 2012 at 12:00 pm

38 years ago, my DF (then) and I scheduled our wedding for Oct 26th. He was a deer hunter, but not much anything else. My immediate family were not hunters at all. Well, it so happened that year, that date was the opening of small game season. Most of his relatives, uncles and cousins, declined to attend our late afternoon wedding due to hunting. His brother and step-father did come to the wedding but did make a few remarks about why did we pick THAT day.

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Danielle October 18, 2012 at 6:32 pm

I can’t understand the selfishness of these people. It would be (almost) understandable if they declined to come to the wedding for a sporting event that only lasted one day, such as the Super Bowl, but the fact that they can hunt ANY weekend for the whole season shows a level of immaturity and indifference that should not be forgotten. It is selfish and hurtful to treat family this way.

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Jdbar93 October 18, 2012 at 11:34 pm

I think this is where we need to remember the “invitation is not a summons” line. If various family members do not wish to attend a wedding, as long as they send in a courteous, timely RSVP of “no,” then they have behaved perfectly correctly. Coming to the wedding and griping about missing a hunting day is much more obnoxious, in my opinion.

Of course, if it’s known that family members are skipping in order to hunt, watch football, attend a play, craft show, or whatever, it might lead to some interesting conclusions as to where family activities rank in terms of priorities.

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Hemi October 18, 2012 at 12:31 pm

Oh, dear OP- I am laughing out loud. I, too, live in the South and a few years, my husband started deer hunting and it’s like a cult. From late October to January 1st, there is nothing more important! That includes weddings, birthdays and holidays.

For example: Our youngest sons’ birthday is Nov. 24th so of course it is just before, on or just after Thanksgiving each year. My husband goes deer hunting, every single year. He can’t miss a single day of deer hunting, not even for his son. He goes on Thanksgiving Day, the day after Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.

Many people say college football is a religion in the South but I think the “old religion” of deer hunting is making a come-back!

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Angela October 18, 2012 at 6:24 pm

I grew up in a rural area of the South and in high school, it was a given that only “nerd” boys would be in class at the beginning of deer season. Now, of course, the nerds are the cool guys’ bosses.

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Danielle October 18, 2012 at 6:35 pm

There is no chance I would tolerate my husband behaving this way. The fact that he is so cavalier about hurting his son’s feelings speaks volumes about his level of self interest. Further, I find it absolutely astonishing that it doesn’t even register on your radar how he is neglecting YOU by refusing to be present for these important family occasions.

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Aria October 22, 2012 at 7:43 pm

That depends how he does it. If he celebrates his son’s birthday a day early, that’s fine. We do that all the time in my family, although usually the reason is not deer hunting. :)

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Bint October 19, 2012 at 3:48 pm

I find this both astonishing and appalling. How awful for your son to know he comes second to deer hunting in his father’s eyes. How sad to have him think deer hunting is more important than his family at Christmas.

I’ve been involved in hunting with people whose lives revolved around it, but this is just pitiful.

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Margaret October 19, 2012 at 9:18 pm

I gave birth to one child during hunting season, and I heard about my bad timing for the entire pregnancy, including pressure to have the kid before a planned hunting trip. It was annoying as any repetitive teasing is. However, I can live with it because the birth would have taken priority over the hunting trip, and I do know that hunting is my husband’s absolute favourite activity and he doesn’t get as much time to hunt as he would like because he works to provide for his family.

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Hemi October 20, 2012 at 5:18 pm

After rereading my original comment, I realize it came across as more harsh than I intended. I, unsuccessfully, was trying to be humorous about hunting in the South. Let me attempt to clarify:

During the off season, my husband is present at each and every family event. During this time, he does very little for himself. No going out to lunch (he takes something from home), no “nights out” with friends (all the men take the kids fishing and hang out together) and he rarely buys anything just for himself. He saves the money he would spend on these things and for 1 week every summer, he takes the kids (2 boys, 15 & 19) on a guys-only outing/vacation. They have done everything from deep sea fishing to spending the week going to the Smithsonian museums in D.C.

Since the youngest boy’s birthday falls around Thanksgiving, we do a family-only party during Thanksgiving dinner. His friends are busy with their families during this time of the year, so a party with friends is nearly impossible. Instead, we have a party for him during the summer that his friends come to. Husband is at each of the summer parties.

During hunting season, my husband works every day and is at home at night. He hunts on Saturday and Sunday. During the holidays, he hunts on any days he is off, including Thanksgiving and Christmas but, again, he is home at night, usually before 5 pm.

Yes, most men would stay home with family when they are off during the holiday, but husband comes home each night during this time, so I am satisfied. (How many of those men take their children on a trip, without mom, each year?) My son does not feel like hunting is more important than him; for the last 2 years, he went on a birthday deer hunt with his father and brought home an 8 point buck and a couple of does.

My husband has his faults, like we all do but, he is a fantastic father. 99 % of the time he is not hunting, he is with his kids and I get tons of “me” time. Saturday, Sunday and daylight hours on holidays, during hunting season, are more than a fair trade.

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Jess October 21, 2012 at 6:58 pm

If my birthday was on the same day as the deer season opener, I’d be asking my dad to take me with him too! Sometimes it’s not practical to take everyone along on a hunt so a birthday is a good rationale to keeping the group small (i.e parent and the one birthday child). Of course you have to take in age of child, whether they’d like to go and appropriate time away/location but I find hunting to be a really good activity to do with someone you love. I think hubby is doing the right thing by taking the birthday boy along :)

Although I’m yet to have kids, I know I’ll be taking them hunting when they’re ready, so they’ll have both Mum and Dad to look after them.

Being from Australia we don’t have a deer season per se, as they are considered a feral species we’re allowed to hunt them year round so I’m lucky enough to have the excuse “you can go hunting whenever you want! (insert event here) doesn’t happen every day”

Hemi, I think you’ve definitely got a keeper!

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GroceryGirl October 18, 2012 at 1:02 pm

My cousin’s wedding fell on the same day as a big, big football game at the local state collage and several people opted to miss their wedding for the game.

Several other people backed a truck out to the outside area where the wedding took place with a big screen tv hooked up in the back so thru could watch the game.

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GroceryGirl October 18, 2012 at 1:03 pm

they* not thru

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Ripple October 18, 2012 at 2:42 pm

Your story of the wedding cd reminded me of my sister’s wedding. She wanted to play Pachelbel’s Canon as her processional and asked me if I had a cd with it. I did, but warned her that someone better be right ready to turn off the cd when that song ended, because the next was Wagner’s Ride of the Valkyries!

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Liz October 18, 2012 at 3:25 pm

Mary-
I am from M and a large portion of my family still lives in W. Opening weekend is almost a holiday in these parts! My uncle once took a job with the express stipulation that he would not be available for one week beginning the second Thursday in November (one must account for travel time and setting up deer camp). Thanks for the chuckle.

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Sarah Paige October 18, 2012 at 4:43 pm

OP- I live in the South, too, and late October through January 1st is considered “holy season”. My husband is an avid deer hunter and has missed more than 1 family/special occasion to go hunting. Our youngest child’s birthday is Nov. 24th, so it falls around Thanksgiving and many years on Thanksgiving but my husband will go deer hunting and skip the party. He hunts on Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve & Day, New Year’s Eve & Day, etc. I guess it’s just something about sitting in the freezing cold, covered in camo, looking down the barrel of a high-powered deer rifle… I don’t get it.

T should have had better sense than try to come in late looking for leftovers but he did work up an appetite sitting in the tree stand trying to shoot a buck! (or doe) :) All in all, just be glad he didn’t barge into the ceremony in full camo toting a dead deer.

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Shoegal October 18, 2012 at 5:00 pm

Deer Hunting is a big deal to a lot of people – didn’t realize it was that big of a deal though. Enough of a big deal to miss a wedding? This guy thought it was a very valid excuse – shouldn’t have come back for leftovers though – he set his priorities and chose hunting. He then should have accepted that he completely missed the event and had no rights to anything there. Perhaps there is something in that same vein that other people would miss a wedding for – can’t think of any for myself though.

I scheduled our wedding on the day our hometown hockey team was scheduled for a playoff game. Hockey is not that important to my husband or me – we didn’t think twice about it. We do route for our team – but we weren’t crazy about seeing all the games. I mean – this was a playoff game – not a Stanley Cup game. During our reception scores of people left to go listen to their car radios and would come back in periodically to get more refreshments. The hall was nearly empty!

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slappie jones October 18, 2012 at 6:08 pm

I had an uncle who was late to his own father’s funeral because he went hunting the morning of the services. He said it’s “what dad would’ve wanted”. The many relatives who to this day don’t speak to him because of it disagree. Shameful to say the least…

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Mary October 18, 2012 at 8:13 pm

Liz I now live in M and yes it is almost a state holiday. Plus if you are squemish stay off any non city highways unless you want to see dead deer on the backs of trucks. Hunters in W are just as dedicated but the timing is different. My best friend growing up never once had her Dad home on Thanksgiving because he would be off hunting for the week!

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L October 19, 2012 at 1:38 am

This reminds me of a WONDERFUL play my high school produced. It was the best I think they had or have ever done and I saw it every night. However, opening night the theater held only 9 PEOPLE! Why? Because it was the final episode of ‘Seinfeld’ that night. How sad.

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StephM October 19, 2012 at 2:32 am

If a relative/friend missed my wedding for something like hunting or a game, I probably wouldn’t be close to that person ever again. While an invitation is not a summons, not attending a once in a lifetime event speaks a lot for one’s priorities and how they feel about a person.

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StephM October 20, 2012 at 2:23 am

I do want to make a small addendum to this. If the person is from a family that primarily eats the food they hunt, I would be understanding. A deer or two can feed a family for a while.

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Kate October 19, 2012 at 6:04 am

I went to a wedding last month that was held on the same day as one of the biggest sporting events in my country. Think the Superbowl but Australian Rules football. Now, I am a footy fanatic. I work at a footy club, my fiance plays footy, I attend every game my team plays. And I still went to this wedding, despite the fact that the wedding began during the final quarter of the game.
I did tell my friend that if my team made the Grand Final I’d be unable to attend – I have tickets reserved in the event of my team participating and I paid a lot of money for them. Fortunately (or unfortunately), they didn’t make it.

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Jess October 20, 2012 at 9:17 am

My husband’s team (swans) did… and WON :) we diddnt get to go though unfortunately

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Kate October 23, 2012 at 3:23 am

I was definitely supporting the Swans! I’m a North Melbourne supporter…oh well, at least they made the finals!

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Jenn50 October 19, 2012 at 11:47 am

A friend of the family gave birth to two sons a year apart, without her husband around for either of them. Well, after all, it WAS opening weekend for Rainbow Trout!

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Bint October 22, 2012 at 5:47 am

What a pathetic set of values for a father.

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Shannan October 22, 2012 at 9:12 am

Are they divorced now?

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Jenn50 October 22, 2012 at 11:32 am

Nope. Very happily married for nearly 40 years now. She was always a very strong, independent woman, who had a friend with her in the delivery room and simply rolls her eyes at her husband’s obsession. And to be fair, this was in the days before cell phones and she wasn’t in labour when he left. He knew it was near her time, but if could have been another week or more. The boys (who are now grown men) grew up hunting and fishing with their dad. It is mind boggling to me, but if she and her sons just laugh about it, and he’s a good father in every other way, I guess it’s not really my place to criticize. I suspect he’s the type of guy who wouldn’t have been very comforting in the delivery room anyway, but I can’t imagine MY husband not wanting to at least see his wife and new baby right away, and in fact, he did decline trips that would take him out of town in my last month of each pregnancy.

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Angel October 19, 2012 at 1:28 pm

Your relative who showed up at the end of the reception wanting leftovers?? Yeah, he was RUDE and there is no way around that. People who failed to RSVP and still show up expecting seats and to be fed? RUDE! You were much nicer and more gracious than I would have been. Preparing food for an extra 60 people is absolutely outrageous! Again, it’s great that you did that and it turned out well, since you had so many people who did not respond, and showed up anyway, but WOW. My personal pet peeve is people who do not RSVP. How tough is it to let someone know if you are coming or not? Especially to a larger and often more formal event like a wedding–that’s just not right. My wedding was pretty big–like 250 people. My DH and I both come from big Italian families and have many paisanos (close friends who are like family) but still I made it known that if I did not hear from you and you showed up anyway, be prepared to have no seat and no food. Luckily we didn’t have any problems. I have however, stopped inviting people to my home who have a long history of not responding. And surprise surprise, no invites from them have been forthcoming either, so it’s probably just as well. I have found that more often than not, lack of RSVP means that the guest is waiting for something better to come along :(

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slappie jones October 20, 2012 at 12:07 pm

@jenn 50: that is completely wrong! I would be furious if I were your friend. No fish is worth missing the birth of your child. I went into labor with our third son in the middle of the night and by the time I started to push, my hubby was sound asleep in a chair. My male doctor started to get me ready to deliver and asked me if he should wake my husband. Myself and three female nurses all yelled in unison “YES!!!”

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Jenn50 October 22, 2012 at 11:38 am

As I’ve just updated above, to be fair, this was in the days before cell phones, and she wasn’t in labour when he left for the trip. That said, I do think it’s absurd to leave your heavily pregnant, due-within-a-week-or-two wife to be out of contact several hours away on a fishing trip.

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starstruck October 22, 2012 at 11:17 am

your story is funny to me because i also live in the south and yes that’s exactly how people are! i swear i’ve lived here all my life and i will never get used to it. sigh

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The Elf October 22, 2012 at 12:47 pm

It sounds like OP doesn’t like this part of her family very much. I understand that. But then why invite them to your wedding?

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Kry October 23, 2012 at 7:29 am

Because if she didn’t invite them it would be held against he for the rest of her life. At an elderly friends funeral the person (a cousin) giving the eulogy started with “Even though X didn’t invite me to her wedding I am here today…”.

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The Elf October 24, 2012 at 8:17 am

Yeah, see, I would view that differently. I would think “at least I didn’t have to put up with at passive-aggressive BS from my cousin until I was already dead”.

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Melde October 23, 2012 at 2:17 pm

Obviously T wasn’t a very good hunter or he would not have needed the leftover trays!

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Enna November 10, 2012 at 5:38 am

How rude – not to show up then show up dirty and then help himself to food and drink to take home. I like the OP’s mother’s reaction.

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NostalgicGal November 25, 2012 at 1:15 pm

I grew up to the west of M and the religion of Deer Hunting was very much alive and well there too. When in HS you could opt to take 1/2 day off during the school year… either the morning of Deer Season opening or the afternoon before prom (so you could have your hair done (or clean your car)). Senior year I went in the principal’s office with deer tag in hand to request that morning off… and he was dumbfounded. What IF I was going to prom? I looked him in the eye and said you know me and what are my chances? I’m taking the opener off. (I did get my deer, I did NOT end up going to prom – shortage of fellows in area and two schools scheduled same night – which was very stupid) I do feel for the OP and high five to her mother to handle the reception crasher…

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Thinking Out Loud March 25, 2014 at 4:13 pm

I know I’m checking in late on this thread but…. An awful lot of these comments come across as really snarky. I’m from a rural area — yes, I have a degree, pursued a military career, and am honourably retired, and compensated for my service. But that doesn’t make me better than my neighbors, redneck or hillbilly or whatever perjorative term people wish to hang on them. What it does mean is that I can afford NOT to hunt some years, and still feed my husband and kids. Some people, for whatever reason, don’t have this luxury. And it’s none of my business if someone “chooses” to hunt, or “must” hunt.

That said, because it is a small rural and farming community, it’s almost impossible *not* to be aware of hunting season dates, so people generally don’t schedule events during deer or turkey season. Births and funerals, of course, are exceptions. But then again, I’ve never known anyone who wasn’t willing to skip an afternoon (or day) of hunting to turn out for a funeral or a special birthday party. Maybe it’s just my part of the Ozarks that’s like this, though.

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