Thursday, April 24, 2003

OK - Fun time - "12. You have a party and the neighbors don't even realize it." This came as part of one of those HO-HO e-mails about old people. Well, the following really happened to us a couple years ago. Keep in mind that we live kind of out in the country. Our son had come for dinner and later we were out on the deck. It was spring - near graduation - and we could hear sounds of a party drifting toward us - not close but obviously a big party. Shortly afterward our son left, I was at the computer and husband went in to get ready for bed. I saw headlights coming down the driveway & thought it was our son returning. The car stopped, there was a pause - then two people got out. I was peering worriedly out the window when one of them passed by a light by the steps and I saw a police uniform. I yelled to my husband - "There are 2 policemen coming to our door." He came shambling down the hall in his shortie pjs - picture that - and answered the door while I stood at the top of the stairs gawking. Two cops. They looked at him. They looked up at me. They looked at each other and started grinning, then turned to us and said "You aren't by any chance having a wild party here tonight are you - we got a complaint about one at this address." We didn't say a word - just cracked up. At that point a second police car rolled down the drive and two more police appeared (must have been a slow crime night in Manlius NY). They looked at the four of us - all of whom were laughing like fools at that point, looked a little disgusted and left. Y'know.... on reflection - I don't think it was necessary for them to laugh quite so hard....

Wednesday, April 09, 2003

Death for Sale - by the inch! Good grief - now I've seen it all. Recently the obituaries in our local paper - the Syracuse NY Post Standard - became longer and more detailed. Oh well. That's nice - kind of like obits were at the turn of the 19th century. Still - some seemed a bit bizarre - like the woman called to sit beside God and assist him in his daily duties. Huh? If nothing else - one wonders how she resolved the question of seniority. I mean - there must be people much longer dead who were looking for promotion. And being a member of Kiwanis is no longer enough. The deceased are described as 'devoted to his/her grandchildren' or interested in 'scrapbooking'.

The mystery is solved. I noticed a blurb at the bottom of the page! Obits 2 inches or less are free - longer than 2 inches and you pay! Now I call that rampant discrimination against people with ten children and/or ten surviving siblings. A picture? Pay up! Ah but there is now an online obit guestbook - which you pay for - where people may go to make entries. I don't even want to go there.

This all conjures up images - most of them unfortunate. In order to pay for these 'amenities' - perhaps we'll have Rent-a-Space caskets and urns where ads may be placed with proceeds going to the survivors? How about hearses with loudspeakers on top delivering sales pitches. In case you think I'm some young person convinced of her own immortality and therefore insensitive to such concerns - I'm 72 years old and let me tell you this - if ANYONE puts one of those obitu-novels in the paper when I die - I PROMISE - I will come back and haunt them!