Monday, October 21, 2013

Death and taxes. But mainly death.

I haven't blogged for ages. I once read a blog post somewhere that said the worst thing a blogger can do is apologise to their readership for being absent because AS IF anyone actually cares or notices.

I wouldn't want to seem up myself! God no.

So I ain't apologizing to nobody.

Anyway.

I went to a funeral a couple of weeks ago. An old teacher friend of my Dad's, who taught me back in the day, died suddenly of a heart attack. He was only 60. It was very shocking for his family.

I went with Dad to the funeral. It was at my old high school, where he and his wife have both been teaching for over 30 years. My parents taught there for a goodly period too.

There were more than 1000 people in attendance. Amazing.

His Year 12 Physics class formed the guard of honour. They were all weeping hysterically, poor kids. You know what teenagers are like. I guess it was probably one of their first experiences of death. Facing mortality and all that.

It was disorienting being back at school. At the wake, I was served hot nibblies (including cheeerios and sauce) by my old teachers. Weird.

His wife, my former English teacher,  was distraught, but their three daughters were amazing.

I wasn't sure that they would remember me.  I gave the middle daughter a hug, and said "Do you remember me? Sarah?"

She said through her tears, "Of course I do! I vomited all over your house when I was a little girl once."

"Really?" I said. "I don't remember that! Look, all is forgiven. What's a vomit between friends!"

We all had a good laugh. Well, good-ish. Wake-appropriate.

There were a couple of people from my year there. It was nice to see them. High school seems simultaneously a long time ago and only yesterday. I had the strange feeling that everything was physically smaller than it used to be. I guess school looms large in your memory.

Anyway because I don't have a smart phone these days and I never remember to take the camera anywhere, here are some photos from the archives. Of my 10 year high school reunion. So sort of in theme.





Fascinating I know. Crazy times.

I think about death ALL the time. Odd I know. I'm always convincing myself that I've got a terminal illness.  I recently bought a necklace with skulls in it because I'm constantly getting all memento mori on everyone's arses.

I thought about Mr H dying so suddenly, and felt compelled to tell M that if I were to die suddenly, I request that;

- I be cremated
- The funeral is held at Dad's church
- I want nice music to be played that makes everyone think fondly of me and weep tears of bittersweet bittersweetness, which is totes my favourite emotion
- If they want a memorial stone or something then put it at the Buderim cemetery.

I will think further about my funereal music choices and advise you when I am decided. Hopefully I don't die before then.

Memento mori, people. Memento mori.

43 comments:

  1. i miss you when you don't post. i miss you full stop. i would not be able to magic up bitter sweet emotion as i would be DISTRAUGHT at your funeral. x

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    1. I MISS YOU TIMES A MILLION. Please can we catch up stat.

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  2. I already have my funeral song picked out (well I did but I would have to look it up if I wanted to tell you the exact song name) - but it's one by Enja !! And, other than that, A&K can choose whatever else they want. I did also think of including Ave Maria but that one is an on-again, off-again song as I can't really make up my mind !!!
    Have the best day !
    Me

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  3. Ditto Jane above!! Distraught my friend!!!!!!
    K xxoo

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    1. Oh it's good to know I'll be missed! HAHA!

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  4. Well I, for one, had noticed your absence. Not sure I'd go so far as feeling bittersweet about it, but I certainly noticed ;) I'm not sure I could cope with the mixture of feelings that would go with a combined funeral and school reunion (of sorts). That's your ghosts of Christmas past, present and future in one room! No wonder it's got you pondering burial tunes. Looking forward to seeing more Slapdash writing if and when you're ready to write.

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    1. I think I'm back again. I fell into a malaise for a while. Thank you for noticing my dear x

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  5. I disappointed that you didn't mention taxes here. Seriously though - I am sorry for the loss of this lovely man who is obviously very dear to your family. Sixty is too young to go. Making his daughter laugh was a kind thing to do.
    In other news, you came up in conversation on Friday night. I whinged to Kimbooli that you, Rachel, Ace Dennehy and indeed Kimbooli herself are not writing anymore and I missed you all.
    Welcome back.

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    1. Oh I wish I could have a drink with you B. I want to come to Sydney.

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    2. we want you to too

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  6. All joking aside, it's a good idea to sit down with loved ones and let them know your wishes. Or to ask your parents what THEY would like. A hard conversation to have, but makes it so much easier (I'm told!) when the time comes.

    Love the reunion pics. I posted about my latest high school reunion last week - would you believe - 30 years?! Where does the time go?!

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    1. 30 years! ZOMG! I am not really that far off my 20 year reunion I guess! AAAAARGH!

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  7. Hello Darling. Funerals can be sort of cathartic and really make us focus on how we want our last Big Event played out.

    I think about death too- natural too once you are a parent I think and want to be here to watch your kids grow ad stuff.

    I'm happy you are posting xxxx

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    1. Thank you FF. yes I think about it lots now I am a mama. xx

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    2. I think about it now Im OLD

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  8. Choose your song carefully Slapdash, you will totes spoil it for everyone from that day forward. Make sure it's worth wrecking! :)

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    1. Excellent advice from somebody who knows xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

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  9. Naturally I want Carpenters music at my funeral which probably means nobody will come. Sigh.

    Agree with Lara, not sure I could stand the emotion of high school memories AND a funeral. So sorry for your loss. Death and the fragility of life has been playing on my mind lately too. A lovely older gent who is our neighbour two doors down puts on the most amazing Christmas lights every year and hands out lollies to the neighbourhood kids including my boys. Anyway, he has cancer and is deteriorating fast. Meanwhile, another neighbour who is probably only in his mid to late 40's ended up in a wheelchair after diving into a pool. Then, just before the school holidays a friend's 72 year old father just dropped dead. Her mother has Alzhiemer's, she didn't even realise what was going on, so he was dead in the house for a few days before the police contacted my friend. Oh dear, am I cheering you up yet?? Ahem...

    What actually counts as being missing in Blogland? If you don't post everyday? In that case, I'm always missing..

    Good to have you back, anyways. xo

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    1. I love the Carpenters. I'll come. As long as it's not "We've Only Just Begun" ... that could be a bit weird.

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    2. Ness that is very sad aout your neighbour. Gosh it's strange thinking about mortality. That is also a dreadful story about your friend's dad too. God almighty :-(

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  10. It must be in the water. For some reason mortality is a huge theme for me too. Must be getting old or something. But I do worry about the safety of everybody lately as if I am back in the cavemen days. Told my 38 year old to be careful on his bike! He won't let me forget about it...funny been so flat out I was going to do a post about being back to regular scheduling but I won't bother now bc I am the only one who notices! :) x

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    1. I am very caveman about safety. Constantly fight or flighting like CRAZY!

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  11. I've missed you and have actually just swung by your blog a few times in case your posts were being filtered to spam!!!!! Sorry for your loss. Love the piccys, and SHIT you have to get back on that horse (eg smartphone) I have often thought about what would happen if I died, I have music sorted but I said to the Husband he has to wait A LONG TIME before moving on. But he has to put our children's interests first, but I know he would - now I'm a wee bit sad...

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    1. I feel sad thinking about my own death too! ALso panicky. Oh god the humanity...

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  12. I was just thinking that I could do with a Slapdash post...and then you deliver!
    I don't think about death all that often but I do think of terrible accidents that lead to chronic injuries and disfigurement and generally life altering awfulness...I suppose that is because that is my line of work. I often think death is the kinder option.
    Now I need to think of something cheerful.

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    1. True, death probably is the kinder option in some ways but it doesn't stop me panicking like hell about it.

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  13. I've missed your posts. No doubt the family appreciated your presence at th efuneral. I dont havee plan sfor after my death except to be an organ donor.

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    1. I'm an organ donor too, that is actually quite a comforting thought xx

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  14. I've missed you NS - I cant honestly say I give death a great deal of thought - I think my only wish would be to have my ashes scattered somewhere beautiful overlooking the sea where people could go and remember me in peace with the sea breeze blowing through their hair.

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    1. That is lovely NS. I don't know why Ican't get it together blog wise, I'm hoping I am back on track now.

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  15. My dad suddenly died of a heart attack at 61. That was just over 3 years ago and I've been convinced I'm dying ever since. I mean, we are ALL "dying", but I keep thinking it will happen way too soon, just like it did for my dad, and this lovely man you speak of. Oh to be a kid again, and think that we will just live forever.

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    1. I'm so sorry to hear that. Very sad indeed. My friend died suddely when we were 16 and ever since then I have been obsessed with dying. Ghastly.

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  16. No Daft Punk then, or they'll be less bittersweet and more "what the..." looks.

    And if you want to avoid thinking about death, don't go to this site http://symptoms.webmd.com/#introView

    I have lots of illnesses that I didn't know existed before.

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    1. Good point. Although maybe it would lighten the mood.
      And GOD I am NOT looking at that website. I WILL HAVE EVERYTHING!

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  17. I've missed your posts. When I saw a status update from you on fb, my first thought was, "I haven't seen Slapdash Mama for ages on here" and thought maybe my feed thingy was playing up. Which is weird because a) I'm totally not a stalker and b) I don't usually have such long thoughts. Anyho. Dying. Not fun. I try not to think about it. Too confronting and all that. But I do like your idea of bittersweet bittersweetness. I think that might totes be my new favourite emotion now too x

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    1. Oh it's nice to be missed. I hope I can get my shizz together re: the blog. Bittersweetness is the bomb, emotion wise.

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  18. Crap. I totally just wrote a very witty and somewhat long winded comment and then my google account ate it. So that was fun. Long story short, I've missed your posts, I try not to think about dying and I rate your bittersweet bittersweetness comment highly. I think it might be my new favourite emotion x

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  19. Was going to take you to task after reading on Faux Fuschia that you of all people are joining the Halloween group (don't tell anyone I had a Halloween party in High school and my son went trick and treating ..good god what a phrase )

    After reading your blog I'll let you off lightly ..60 wow that's young

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    1. I know, I feel weird about the Halloween thing too but I've caved into popular pressure. No energy to oppose.

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  20. I have had at least 50 different incurable and totally terminal diseases this year alone... at least I was convinced I did. Great to see you pop up in my reader chick - I missed you x

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Vent your spleen! You know you want to.

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