Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Heidi Klum and The Departed

Cartoon courtesy of The New Yorker

Every day on my way to and from work I pass a cemetery. It’s a nice little cemetery on the side of a hill overlooking the valley. Some days there will be tents and lots of mourners, children chasing each other and a long line of parked cars. Other days there will be just a few somberly dressed people, the hearse conspicuous on the manicured lawn. I like to see the decorations change with the seasons. It kind of warms my cold, dark heart to see a new set of flowers, Valentines, and reminders of other passing holidays on headstones.

One day, as I was driving home, a group of mourners was heading back to their cars. My eyes went wide as I watched them pick their way across the lawn. I couldn’t believe that I was seeing women, who had just attended a service in CUT-OFF JEAN SHORTS.

I’m sorry, but are daisy duke cut-offs ever, ever, ever appropriate at an internment? Did I miss an episode of What Not to Wear? Did the Fugly girls give their blessing to formal shorts for funerals (and thereby cause my admiration for them to turn to disgust?) Is it really OK to wear something where the pockets are hanging out of your butt ever, let alone to a solemn occasion?

Let me go on the record: if any of you wear jean shorts to my funeral, I will come back from the dead and haunt your remaining days with the wrath of raiment.

In the vein of all things morbid, I want a party for a funeral; there had better be funny stories and lots of laughing. In fact, I think I might make it black tie.

Other things that are not allowed:

Flip-flops. Seriously. I will go poltergeist on your cola.

Hot Tamales the candy. Don’t like ‘em. Even in death.

Crocs. You know what? You don’t need ‘comfy’ shoes for a funeral, not even you, c-dawg.

Throwing yourself on the coffin. That’s just tacky.



Ravel’s Pavane for a Dead Princess. Come on, that’s funny.

General snacks, including actual hot tamales. Hey, grieving is hard work, I get that. But my tamale recipe goes to the grave with me.

Dramatic displays of tears

The whole “LALALALALALA” thing that Palestinian women do.


Gabriel Garcia Marquez readings. Or something you wrote for the occasion (unless it's a poem.)

What's IN and what's OUT at your funeral?


FoxyJ said...

At my grandmother's funeral S-Boogie tripped and nearly fell into the open grave. Not cool.

My uncle was an old-school cowboy. At his funeral they had an old-fashioned hearse drawn by mules that took his coffin from the church to the cemeterary with everyone walking behind it. I thought that was pretty cool. And at that funeral my aunt also decided she was too classy for the church potluck and paid for prime rib and baked potatoes for all the family. I thought that was pretty cool too.

I haven't thought about it much, but I know I don't want a weird or gaudy coffin. Plain and simple please. And I want my Polynesian brothers-in-law to play guitar and sing. We've done that another funeral and it was powerful.

TheMoncurs said...

Ha! Peldons. I wouldn't mind a little Intern George at mine.

Awhile back I read an article about how in Sweden you can be composted. They flash freeze you then use super high frequency sound waves to shatter you into bits and then they use you to compost a tree. I kind of like the idea of not moldering away uselessly in a coffin.

brittney spears said...

ding dang y'all. I loves me my cut-off shorts. They work anywhere... Funerals, custody hearings, wherever.

compulsive writer said...


meg said...

Oh my word... with your little cartoon with "I've got a clip" and your reference to the cut off denim shorts all I could think of was Jimmy Kimmel and Ben Afflecks answer to Sarah Silverman and Matt Damon's clip. I'm so sorry. But I don't feel bad that I'm referring to something that 6 million people saw on youtube before me. I mean I live in a 3rd world south pacific dictatorship. I'm lucky I get to view Youtube and "the jet set" blog at all!!

I'm too distracted now to talk about funerals...

ktb said...

I don't want funeral potatoes - maybe a pasta bar. I want some hot looking man - preferably my significant other - to be really upset.

I agree about the poetry - I'll haunt anyone who brings cheese to my funeral. I'm not so concerned about shoes. But if I get invited to your funeral I'll wear uncomfortable shoes I promise.

Oh, and I want to come to my funeral.

ktb said...

Funeral invitations ... cool or creepy?

sue-donym said...

Are you admitting your distaste for poetry? Just wondering because although avid reader that I am, poetry does not do anything for me. I thought I was all alone in this.

I will not only wear fashionable shoes at your funeral, but they will be new, high, and fabumore. Promise.

c jane said...

Guess I'm not coming to your funeral. (The war of the Crocs rages on . . .)

My G-ma always tells me that she'd like lots of balloons at her funeral. She's a sassy-pants like that.

P.S. Don't die soon. I like having you around.

more caffeine, please said...

I just insist on no open casket and if they do, they better have a MAC professional do my makeup, especially my brows. DO not view me with bad brows.

And what's more depressing than gathering back at the dimly lit cultural hall for a gross pot-luck?

They better be back at the 'rent's house with a caterer and a professional chef.

Cafe Johnsonia said...

Gosh, Azucar. I can't even think past bedtime (hurry, hurry, hurry).

All I'm gonna say is that I want my funeral to be short and sweet--none of those 2-hour long eulogies from some old guy no one knows.

Oh! One more--there better be some good food. And no offense, but I don't want jell-o salads and funeral potatoes. (That's sort of what I meant when I said "good food".) Like, what's wrong with maybe just having a dessert buffet? Maybe just some rootbeer floats?

c jane said...

I'd like to ditto my friend James, no open casket for me either.

Azúcar said...

Open caskets are weird.

A dessert buffet is brilliant!

April said...

Not allowed: taking pictures of me in a coffin. That's just plain creepy. I can't tell you how many times I developed those pictures when I worked at a One Hour Photo, including, to my immense shock and sadness, my own great-grandmother in a casket. Really? Do I need that to be my last image of her in my mind?

I would like, in lieu of memorials, donations to the libraries that I worked at.

fijiangirl said...

I'm with you. I want a party... catered with great food, and of course I live band with dancing. After all people are there to remember me and both the hubby and I love to dance. What could be better at a funeral than a hot Latin band! Cry at the service and laugh at all the great times, burry me and then live it up. if the band is great I will be there!

Emily said...

Ooooh, clever post topic, Zuca! I'm going to have to think about this one a bit...just wanted to say that I loved your comment about our boys "meeting" and now being friends. That was so cute. I'm hiding my Quik powder, ketchup, and parmesean cheese before our first play date, though.

petullant said...

Me: You cannot pick up women at my funeral!
Ben: Well, I wouldn't do that...
Me: Wait, you can't pick up women before to bring to the funeral either.
Ben: But, it's a black tie affair. I have to have a date!

*My fellow there with a new hoochie. I WILL ALWAYS BE THE ONLY HOOCHIE!

*Any of the women in my family (or their girlfriends) misunderstanding the term "The Viewing" by wearing very low cut blouses. (I'm looking at my brother's ex-girlfriend when I say that.)

*Country songs. The last two funerals I attended had new country songs played - one by Garth Brooks and one by LeAnne Womack. (I think). I kind of sort of almost died along with the deceased.

Oh forget it. With my family, cremation with no funeral is the only way to go. They can figure out their own way to grieve but they sure as hell don't need to be doing any of it in public.

Reb said...

he, he...your "cold, dark heart"...I love it!

compulsive writer said...

OK I'm back and coherent now. I used to think I wanted speakers blasting my favorite song ever, "Sweet Home Alabama," across the cemetery after I was laid to rest. But if they played it at the volume I usually crank it up to they would wake the dead, and that might be kind of gruesome. So now I simply want bagpipes. Because I've always loved bagpipes.

I want my husband to make me a pine box--no fancy schmancy coffin. And I want to be wrapped in one of my favorite quilts that I have made with my very own hands.

No talks, but I have a silk envelope full of nice things people have said about me over the years and I want random people to get up and read them aloud.

And after the graveside I hope someone will serve rootbeer floats. Then I'll be moving on.

Likely said...

No open casket for me either - seriously weird.

And PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE no hideous floral arrangements. PLEEEEase. In fact, I don't think I've hardly ever seen a funeral floral spread that I have liked.

I have often thought that instead of big gaudy ridiculously overpriced arrangements on easels that die in 4 days I want everyone in attendance to bring with them a single flower and lay it on my casket and then I get buried with everyone's flowers. The flowers preferably come from their garden or yard.

Even a dandelion will do.

Rootbeer floats is a brilliant idea.

Azúcar said...

CW- If you think I'm going to let you take a quilt with you, you've got another thing coming.

Petullant- OK, I hadn't thought of the whole black tie thing as inevitably leading to a 'plus-one' situation. In light of that, is a riderless horse too much?

BTW, if you die, and there isn't some sort of public display by your family, I'll never forgive you. The weddings are so phenomenal, the funerals have got to be a trip.

Reb- It's true.

Likely - Now that is a lovely idea.

Bagpipes? Dancing? A band? Libraries? These are going to be some hot funerals--so hot they might get sponsored. Olympus Funerals.

Azúcar said...

p.s. I'm holding out for Hansel to be there (he's so hot right now.)

compulsive writer said...

Azúcar, somehow I just got this great image of you sneaking over to my homemade coffin when you think no one is looking and pulling my quilt right out from under my cold dead body. I'm amused.

Anonymous said...

when my cousin died in iraq his wife of a few months went to the funeral in jeans, a tank top, and flip flops. Yeah.

b. said...

Nobody better sing Wind Beneath My Wings.

I love mcp's idea on the catering. Diet Pepsi fountains.

Make sure they don't take my boobs, they're real.

Tiffany Twisted said...

Do I have to have a funeral? Just stick me in the group and go have some fun.

PS -- can I jump on your coffin if it makes this kid pop out?

Jill said...

I once went to a viewing where they had a big bowl of candy about 10 feet away from the casket. The widow said "We really wanted to sit it in the casket with him, and a note that said "Have one on me", but we thought some people might not have thought it was funny."
Knowing the deceased, it would have been really funny, however, I still wouldn't have taken any candy.

Rynell said...

The whole open coffin thing has produced a weird sick feeling in my gut at every single funeral/viewing I've attended.

Just say no to the relief society buffet. And to tacky floral messes. Let everyone think I'm generous or something and tell them to donate to my favorite cause.

wendysue said...

I went to a funeral last October where there was an "open mic" at the reception like thingy after the funeral. I have never laughed so hard in my whole life at the stories that were shared. It was brilliant.

At my aunts funeral the pianist played "sentimental journey" as they took the casket out after the funeral. The family loved it!

A must have. . .fabulous food, fabulous flowers, I would also love LVC to stand up and do a Mary Catherine Gallager. . ."my feelings would be best described in a monologe from the after school special Best of friends". . .ya know, but without the whole crashing and showing the undies thing, or at least a fabulous interpretive dance.

Anonymous said...

i know a girl who got married and her mom wore crocs to the wedding that matched her dress.

Katie said...

I don't know about funerals.. but- at my wedding (11+) years ago.. my cousin and his wife came through the line with jean shorts and t-shirts... we will never forget was so funny! Come on people...they do sell button down shirts and skirts/slacks at wal-mart!!

The MomBabe said...

Ooh, I have all the music picked out for my funeral... Okay, just one song. But it has to be sung by a man with a good strong voice, not a girl. I better put this all in my will...

Lucky Red Hen said...

No open casket, flower wreaths, black clothing, wailing and gnashing of teeth.

Yes to wearing white or something colorful, fun music, luncheon in Utah with my friends at Carrabba's, luncheon at Dixie's BBQ in Seattle, and my belongings passed on to people who WANT them (whatever else can go to charity).