Miscellaneous musings from the perspective of a lefty (both senses) atheist with a warped sense of humor.

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Location: Madison, WI, United States

I am a geek, but I do have some redeeming social skills. I love other people's dogs, cats, and kids. Snow sucks, but I'm willing to put up with it just to live in Madison.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Write Your Own Obituary

For awhile, my local newspaper (The Capital Times) used to have a column where you could write in a question about little things that had piqued your curiosity, and they'd sic a reporter on it to turn up the answer.

I wrote in asking why they didn't apply their normal gimlet-eyed, no-nonsense, "nothing but the facts" journalistic standards to the obituaries. "Cousin Mary is now singing with the angels." Yeah? Got the photos to prove it? Whom exactly did you dispatch to the hereafter to report on the recent arrivals?

The response, which admirably was done in the same tongue-in-cheek manner as my original question, was essentially that the newspaper itself doesn't write the obituaries, it only prints them and doesn't vouch for their accuracy. And, since nothing's being offered for sale, the laws about false advertising don't apply.

So let's go with it, shall we? Make sure that you've already written your own obituary, and that your heirs have copies of it to send to the newspaper. Start with a few basic facts, but then go on to the part about discovering the cure for cancer, writing the Great American Novel, having a brilliant opera career, being re-elected 20 times as governor of your fair state, and winning the Nobel Peace Prize. Twice. To go along with your Pulitzer, your Oscars, and the Olympic gold medal for downhill skiing.

What the hell, what are they gonna do? Sue you?

And, face it, wouldn't you rather be known for ANY of those things than for singing with the angels?

= = = = = =
Grim Reaper: Silence!!! I have come for you.
Angela: ... You mean to...
Grim Reaper: ... Take you away. That is my purpose. I am Death.
Geoffrey: Well, that's cast rather a gloom over the evening, hasn't it?
-- Monty Python, The Meaning of Life


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