Wednesday, April 19, 2006

The Park and Thoughts of Death

Usually when I go to a park in the spring time I think about new life and beginnings. Today's stroll started out the same; I heard the birds chirping and felt the sun warm my body. I was in heaven and I was in Hades all at the same time because I was trying to study and every little distraction tore me away from the insurance drivel. After about 30 minutes of test taking and researching I decided to go for a stroll with a goal of ending up back at home. I was walking around when I was drawn to the hibernating rose garden to sit and jot down notes. I had not noticed it before but every bench was dedicated 'In Loving Memory'. It started giving me the heebie jeebies; I mean why dedicate a bench to someone that is dead. Then I really started pondering it and I sat my fanny down on Faye's bench to write and think. What exactly is the purpose of dedicating a bench to a deceased love one in a park? Do they get to enjoy it? No. Did they get to brag about it to their cronies? "You know what Joey got me? A bench in the rose garden! And let me tell you it sure is comfy! I know you're jealous!" No, that doesn't happen either. You might believe everyone goes into heaven and has nothing better to do then watch their loved ones carry on with their day to day lives but I am not so sure. In my heaven that part of the day is an hour long program, similar to Sportscenter that just gives you the day’s highlights and the daily paper posts your living relations Heaven - Hell score in the paper. In my heaven, I am way too busy learning to play shuffleboard and canasta to bother with those still alive outside of the one hour long program and the 15 minutes spent reading the Heaven Gazette. That might just be my heaven though. Anyway even if all you get to do is watch your living relatives do you really want to watch them dedicate a bench that they never visit? No, you probably had enough of the lack of visits while you were alive. So if any of you have already reserved my bench in honor of my death, which I am hoping is a long way off, do me a favor and just get it for me now. Then you and I can have a picnic on it and have pictures of it. All I am asking for is to be able to use that bench before I die! C'mon you're getting it for me for crying out loud! I decided at this point to stop pissing Faye off and I got up from her bench to walk around. That was when I started noticing the dedicated bricks had a few loving tributes to dead people as well. So if this was actually your plans for my post-mortem memorial please inscribe it with "This Brick has been dedicated to Michael Williams, although it's an insult to the brick since it has had a lot more meaningful conversations with me!" Bricks of course make a very clean jump to tombstones. I do not want to be stuck in a wooden coffin that cost more then my car and buried in a plot of land. I would much rather be involved in a funeral pyre or better yet a classic Viking Funeral. Of course that having been said I realize there are rules. Since I would be dead you pretty much could do whatever you like. I was envisioning the Coast Guard intervening as you went to light my boat up and the forestry service may frown on the funeral Pyre idea. So if you have to get a tombstone make sure it is clever, at least half this clever "Here Lies Michael Williams. Thank the Lord I had the good sense to get my money back from him last week!" (BEAT THIS TOMBSTONE INSCRIPTION CONTEST! If you come up with a funnier inscription for yourself, your half sister Luna, your mama, your cousin Toto, your next door neighbor Frank or me; please submit it to me! The winner will get bragging rights and more importantly some swag! You can either email me directly or post it as a comment here. The posted comment will be a better way to display your wit since others will see it but either way will work.)

That being said, I wanted to say that I am hoping the post-mortem memorials are a ways off but I am willing to except any living memorial you feel the need to erect, hehe. I was thinking about what I would prefer after my death and that is to have you plant a tree. With every life taken a new one begins. I hope you all enter the contest it's easy and it's free, good luck. Take care of each other and now I return to the insurance books because I feel a nap brewing!

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