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[Video] Taiwanese Official’s Funeral Features Pole Dancers, Giant Puppets

We’re scarcely into 2017, but perhaps the best funeral of the year has already taken place.

After 76-year-old Taiwanese politician Tung Hsiang passed away in December, his son claimed the man approached him in a dream, reports Quartz. The deceased told him that his funeral should be “hilarious”.

Which is why, on January 3, residents of Taiwan’s Chiayi County were treated to a parade of 50 pole dancers, dancing and gyrating atop colorful vehicles, along with a marching band and several humans dressed as giant puppets.

Video via Shanghaiist.

While this sounds unusual, funeral stripping is a fairly common practice in Taiwan. In fact, it’s so much a part of local funerals, particularly for poor and working-class families, that anthropologist Marc L. Moskowitz made a documentary about the phenomenon in 2011.

Taiwanese Electric Flower Cars, often the domain of these funeral strippers, are large, four-wheeled vehicles such as Jeeps and pickup trucks which have been tricked out with decorations and a small stage to accommodate performers. They often accompany the deceased to his or her final resting place.

Video via National Geographic.

The practice first gained popularity in the 1980s, Moskowitz told the China Policy Institute, and has since dropped off a little but remains a well-known part of Taiwanese society. As Quartz explains, the belief goes that the more people attend a funeral, the better the send-off is for the departed. Adding scantily clad women to the entertainment certainly helps with this.

[Photo via Chron]

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