Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Matchmaker, Matchmaker Make Me a Match...

I informed my father on Friday night between sips of a martini and bites of humus with whole wheat pita that he was failing in his duties as a good Mennonite father, in that he knowing who I'm related to and who I am not is traditionally the one to find me a husband and not me. He agreed, my mom grimaced, and I shrugged - it may be my only way to ever even get K to look my way never mind the prospect of *gasp* a date. Now you may be wondering if I'm looking for a good Mennonite husband why don't I look like the girl in the picture, primarily because I don't live in a Mennonite community and if I did I would only speak low German, my husband high and low and high would be reserved for church, I would have long, never cut, never died hair, make a mean pluma mouse and have a brother named Wilheim or Cornelius and not Sheldon. What I was raised with is the strong Eastern European heritage - all the food including pluma mouse - which I have to say takes time to get use to, and Rook. There is something different about the culture, it's hard to describe but in essence the same awkward transition or gap is seen between lower/middle class and the established upper middle class - the upper middle class has their own language, social rules, jokes and ways of interacting that despite even an acceptance in, it takes years if ever for someone to understand. To understand why with frothing excitement every Mennonite waits for the MCC relief sale to come to their province, state or city and then waits hours in line for borsht, Rollkucken or to see the quilts up for auction while talking to 3rd cousins, aunts, uncles and people who've known you since you were this big - *gesturing to knee,* or that every family occasion is completely devoid of meaning without a vicious battle of Rook. As well they understand that playing Rook with the adults is more a rite of passage for Mennonite child than driving, drinking or high school graduation.

So well who knows what happens now... I'll keep you informed there may be a Klaus, Johann or Jacob in my future. Suprisingly that's a relief.

8 comments:

Ryan said...

You, ah, seem to know a lot about Mennonites Jenn.

Fate? lol

Shawn said...

Screw fate...free will?

You know I kind of lose a little respect for the values you claim to have when you speak about arranged marriages in the sense of a certain denomination. I would have a little more respect if you came out and just said "dad I have a crush on "K", can you try and get me a date since I don't have the balls (no pun intended) to ask himself, eventhough I claim to be a femawhat?

LeahA said...

I had a german dessert today at Reimers...something shrietzzze
it was a cake with some type of pecan glaze... SOO Goood...

LeahA said...

Shawn !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!A femawho???

cheryl said...

femawhat! haha. shawn gains one point.

Jenn said...

Yes everyone is claiming I'm a pseudo feminist - funny according the classic definition of a feminist - my allowing for a family matchmaker has no impact on that. It's a cultural norm, and I don't see how it makes me less than a feminst.

Shawn said...

Jenn,
A psuedo-feminist would not be the proper name I was thinking. I am sure after our extensive conversation you understand where I am coming from with it.

I am not a femenist, but I am an equalist. With that being said, my understanding of someone who is a feminist would include independence and free will.

I suppose that if it is your choice that your father introduces you to someone then it is of your own free will. Every choice has a consequence and I would hope you understand what may come out of an "arranged marriage."

I cannot and will not though put any man made culture, religious denomination, or man made philosophy before God the Father. This means I am pliable to learn and accept other peoples points of view as their own, even when they make no sense to me. Unfortunantly most man made "cultures," especially what we think of as historically cultural, are not historic at all in the scope of this worlds history. They usually change and morph generation to generation and yet we teach each new generation "this is how it's always been done..."

jocelyn said...

Shawn, shawn....
I'm just curious how it is that an "arranged marriage" the way we're joking about it here - basically a parentally-arranged semi-blind date - could ever be construed as coming between you and god the father?

As part of Jen's heritage and culture, and given the mennonite cultural underpinnings in Christianity, I'd say that this is one of many examples of how many cultures can help to uphold the tenets of Christianity by providing that social cohesion.

Oh, and I absolutely can NOT picture jenn marrying anyone she didn't want to. ;)