We men have got to have mates- not the mating type of mates but good male mates, the type of mates who are great friends, and can have a few laughs with, share some jokes that women don't appreciate, and get together occasionally to have a crazy time. We need to let off steam now and then. Letting off steam can take strange ways.
Now when me and my mates get together we have to wait until one of our wives takes off for a weekend, then we'll arrange to get together. A dinner date is set, a theme selected - whether Mexican, Italian, Thai or whatever, and we'll each arrive up with a course we have cooked, music and DVD to suit. We have food in abundance!
We like to think of ourselves as men of the world, yep, and we'll extend our outlook on international issues by getting together. It's all about total immersion in a culture- the adoption of appropriate national dress, the engorging of local cuisine, the tasting of national liquor, sinking into a cultural experience completely and broadening our cross-cultural outlook.
Sometimes we dress up.
I kid you a wee bit. This pic was taken at our ladies and men's cultural evening.
My wife and I were discussing how we had so many friends of such diverse cultural backgrounds, and we came up with the idea of inviting them all to a Cultural Evening. Everyone was invited to arrive up dressed in their ethnic dress or clothing, bring a dinner course of their national food, and be prepared to supply entertainment of their country of origin.
Michael on the left in the pic is Bavarian: anyone who wanders around in Lederhosen must be. He is married to a lovely Thai lady.
Reg on the right is a born and bred Kiwi so arrived up straight off the farm after looking after his lovely ewes. His partner is Malaysian Chinese.
Other friends, Filipino, Maori and our (at the time ) Chinese English language student and his 2 friends arrived.
What no one knew was I was doing the Scots intro thoroughly. I had bought and cooked a huge haggis, hired a piper and his escort, and we were going to do the full 'Piping the Haggis Ceremony'. kilts and all!
No one knew.
Early in the evening, the party was stopped by the sound outside of a Highland piper's long lament of 'The Dark Isle" resounding through the neighbourhood. With utter surprise our guests listened then enjoyed two fully kilted pipers walk through our front door, playing in our lounge then marching out again.
But that was not all. They returned, conducted a full blessing of the haggis, marched it right around our house, back into our dining room, recited Burns 'Ode to the Haggis', drowned it with what just happened to be the second most expensive single malt whisky in my liquor cabinet, proceeded to cut and serve it up, then promptly sat down to drink my most expensive malt whisky! At that stage I called enough. I was paying them to pipe! But those canny wee pipers were drinking all my best whisky on my time and money.
So I sat down to drink my best whisky with them.
Consequently my dancing in my kilt was all over the place- my friends had to hold me up!