Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Outliving Erma

Confession: I check the obituaries in my hometown newspaper almost every day.

It's not from some morbid freakiness on my part -- I gave up screwing around in cemeteries in high school -- but because I love the poignant little stories in every single obit.

A person's entire life is published in black and white for strangers to review: What they did before they died, who they loved and who loved them, what people thought of them, and who they outlived and who outlived them.

Fascinating. Great stories, every single one of them.

With truly fabulous names.

Like Helen Yankitis, God rest her soul. I once knew a guy with Yankitis. I think he went blind. Or something.

Anyhoo.

There's Ernest and Norman and Walter. God I love a good Walter, don't you?

And there are Helens and Harrietts and Ethels.

All blessed souls in their 70s, 80s or 90s, kicking the bucket every single day.

Ernest, for example, was completely devoted to his family and friends and was a lifetime member of the Elks club. And as for Norma, her family says she'll be dearly missed.

The thing is, they kinda have to say that stuff once you're dead, don't they?

"Um, Mr. Flanigan, I'm not sure that 'He was a dirty cocksucker who shoulda been stump-hung long before he kicked the bucket' strikes the proper solemn tone for your father's obituary. Shall we try something a little more heartfelt?"

"How about this: 'Good riddance you fucking coot and we'll jig on your grave.' Better?"

"Much. Thanks."
~~~~~~~~~~~~~
I am listening to: My Chemical Romance - Dead!
I am reading: Mary Queen of Scots, who is also dead
And I am: Starting a Yankitis Awareness Campaign, I think I can pull it off, seriously

3 comments:

the dilf said...

You JERK....I'm NOT Blind!..and you didn't have to tell everyone!

Anonymous said...

I wish I could read. Alas.

I can however tell when a man is going to die by smelling his crotch. Sounds like a gift but it can be a curse at times. The knowing... it sometimes gets to ya.

That said, from the smell of Jim's button downs I can tell he's got a lotta years left. And a few quality ones at that.

The sense of smell... what a powerful informational tool. You humans wouldn't know I guess... But what the heck... you have your obituaries to inform you.

Oh well, time to stop and smell the roses.... tra la la la la...
Gromit

molly gras said...

Gromit: [with a rather serious expression furrowing his furry brow, leans over and pants heavily into Hedy's ear, bits of spittle randomly flecking about] I smell almost dead people