MJE was perusing the obits the other day and was surprised at just how many people kick the bucket every day. FYI, it’s a lot. Curiously, out of all of the deceased only one person “died” (but it was peacefully.) All of the others’ expirations were euphemized in the blandest terms. “Passed away” and “passed on,” despite being the least imaginative were the most popular expressions of choice. “Entered into eternal rest/peace/heaven” was a distant second followed by, in no particular order, “ascended to heaven/heaven’s gate”, “was called home”, “was called from above and brought home”, and “went home with his lord and savior.” The boldest choice was Eddie “Bit” Martin who “transitioned from the physical life to the spiritual realm” which seems a good deal of verbiage just to say Bit bit it.
The nicknames and memorable life factoids of the departed are a fun feature of the obits, “Maw Maw Francis” (a graduate of Katie’s Beauty College), Edward “Charlie” “Wookam” Joseph (whose worldly achievements were limited to a vast number of offspring), Joseph “Turkey” Starring (his favorite activity was working on the CHS barbeque), and Donald “Bulldog” Fernandez (a proud member of the Local 406 Union and the Invincible Masonic Lodge No 360).
One of the creepier sections is birthday wishes from family and friends to their dearly departed. It seems to me that once you’re dead you shouldn’t have to be troubled with birthdays, anniversaries, or any other guilt inducing holidays. You don’t have to worry about back taxes, overdraft protection, colonoscopies, unused frequent flier miles, the check motor light on your dashboard, that pledge to PBS that you never paid, or your grandchildren’s orthodontia bills. You’ve earned your eternal rest, so a note to those left behind: Do not disturb.