Monday, March 07, 2005

Death


Yes, I have this LP in my basement.


Death is a fact of life. You might say I have an unhealthy fascination with death. I don't think it's unhealthy. Sure, I love all those forensics based shows. Sure I have a thing for horror movies and serial killers (I don't want to date one...I just find the psychology interesting.) Sure I wish my mind worked the way Stephen King's does. (That man is even more twisted than I could ever hope to be. Isn't it great?!)


What really gets to people in my family is that I have no problems discussing my own death. Everyone else avoids the topic. Like talking about it will somehow make the event come to pass? More likely they just don't like to think about it. I can understand that. I don't WANT to be dead. I rather enjoy my life, thanks very much. But I do like to think about what might come next. What is beyond this life, if anything.


I am also interested in the whole business of death. It's quite the industry, you know. I used to be a huge fan of the show Six Feet Under. I'm pretty sure its the first TV show that chronicles the life of a family that grew up living in and running a funeral home. I lost track of the show as Tyler got older. One of these days I'll rent the boxed set and get caught up.


The business of death...in the end, your family has lots of difficult decisions to make at a time when making those decisions will be the most difficult. Why not have the decisions made in advance? No one wants to talk about it.


My parents are getting up there in age. I at least got my Dad to put together a document on his computer detailing where he keeps his insurance info and financials. Do they have any idea where they want to be buried? No idea. They won't talk about it. A wake? Full Mass at their church? Which church...they attend 3 different ones. Music? Grave side memorial service? What about a headstone? So many questions... If you guys don't give me answers, you are getting a circus themed funeral complete with clowns and a monkey act! So sayeth I!


As for me? My wishes are simple. I don't want a wake. I want to be cremated in the least expensive way possible (no fancy casket please). I would like my ashes to be spread in Hawaii - Maui, preferably, at some place overlooking the water. I'd like for there to be a small memorial service for my ash spreading and an additional memorial party back home (so everyone doesn't have to fly to Hawaii...but I encourage as many people to make the trip as possible...it's a great place to visit.)


At the party, I want people to share stories about my life. Happy events. Tell my son everything you remember about me. And print out a copy of this journal (and/or future journals if I ever relocate) so he will have some record of my life and personality.


Finally, a memorial scholarship in my name...so future generations will wonder who I was and be happy they learned my name (since I am funding a semester at school). Oh, and maybe dedicate a nice stone bench or something in a pretty park somewhere. I always find myself reading dedication plaques on benches and whatnot and wondering who those people were and thinking how thoughtful it was of the family to put a bench there for me to use.


See? That's not so bad. Now I have a written record of my wishes. Let's hope they don't need to be used for at LEAST 40 years.


Oh...and if I am ever injured in an accident or get so ill as to require extraordinary means to keep me alive...don't go there. I don't want to exist on machines. Just let me go. I'm interested to see what comes next and I don't want to be stuck between here and there.


How about you, fearless readers? Did the subject of this entry make you close my journal with a cold chill up your spine? Or is the topic something you can talk about without fear or distaste?

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