Holding Forth

Published on January 19th, 2018 | by Richard Black


The Big Sleep

I’ve had the pleasure of going to a number of funerals over the past year and I mean that in the best possible way. Being in my forties I don’t attend as many social functions as I used to and, until my friends and family members move on to their second or third marriages, funerals have done a nice job of filling the gap.

I’ve also found that funerals are an excellent opportunity pause and reflect upon one’s life and, given the number of funerals I’ve been attending, I’ve been pausing and reflecting quite a bit. For the record I’d like to point out that I almost made a lame pun about genuflecting but I didn’t because I have some fucking class and this is a sensitive subject.

I’ve come to a point in my life where I’ve become a bit envious of the recently deceased. I’m not hoping to die anytime too soon and I plan on living a long and irritating life but I can really see the appeal of death. Unless you happen to be Strom Thurmond there aren’t many times in someone’s life where a person can be so thoroughly adored as at a funeral. Friends and family members gather together to mourn the loss of…well you and there’s usually an open bar and a catered meal at the end of the event.

Death can be a bit of a bummer but it’s not without an upside. I’ve only been to a few dozen funerals but I have yet to attend one in which the deceased was hounded by his wife to clean the gutters or mow the lawn and, on the flip side, I’ve never heard of a widower asking his recently departed wife what they’re having for dinner or for another blow job.

The kids of the recently deceased also seem to be pretty well behaved unless they happen to be total shits of course in which case you’re probably better off being dead when they boost a Porsche Cayenne and wrap it around a telephone pole after drinking a bottle of Bacardi 151.

I’m not saying that the guy in the casket is delighted about being dead. If it were me I’d be a bit torn up about not seeing my daughter grow up and become a welder but The Big Sleep is also something of a relief. I’ll never have to worry about being asked for another few thousand dollars for her to finish a “kick ass” avant garde short film or pop for another few grand for rent because her boyfriend is in between jobs and holding out for a management position.

Being dead isn’t great but it isn’t without its perks. On the other side of the casket it looks pretty peaceful and, aside from having an awful complexion, I can see the appeal. It’s like a nice nap at the end of a long and disappointing day. I suppose the only downer is that I might not be present to enjoy it but I’m a bit of an introvert so that may not necessarily be a bad thing.

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