These aren’t your grandfather’s pall bearers.
A Taiwan politician’s funeral procession included 50 pole dancers standing atop multicolored Jeeps.
Former Chiayi County Council Speaker Tung Hsiang passed away in December. He was 76.
His funeral took place in Chiayi County on Tuesday, according to local media.
Tung’s son said his father appeared in a dream and told him he wanted his memorial to be “hilarious,” according to CNN affiliate SET TV.
The procession featured the dancers, traditional totems, drummers, imported luxury cars, and flag bearers – an homage to the politician’s apparent love of crowded places.
“It’s so hilarious on the street. I’ve never seen this before,” a passerby told SET TV.
The practice is surprisingly common in Taiwan and rural China.
It became popular in Taiwan in the 1980s when the economy took off, according to anthropologist Marc Moskowitz, a professor at the University of South Carolina.
The practice has roots in the practice of hiring female wailers who were paid to cry at processions, Moskowitz wrote in a post on the China Policy Institute website earlier this year.
“The stripping performances started out as something that gangsters did, but generally spread out to become common practice throughout Taiwan,” Moskowitz wrote. “They are primarily associated with the working class or poorer communities.”
It’s now illegal to have full nudity at funerals, according to Moskowitz.