10 June 2006

When Cory has left the building...

I've been in a blogging mood the past day or two, but haven't had much to say. Ergo, I've been borrowing ideas. This one is from Beast. He has a post where he is trying to give directions and suggestions for his funeral. This is something that I think about quite a bit. Admittedly, I have contemplated suicide in the past, but have never thought to attempt it. First of all, it would be a psychological burden on my loved ones. Secondly, if it failed, it would leave me disabled in a way I can't cope with (I don't deal with sudden change or limbo well). Thirdly, it's quite simply a cop out.

Having said that, though, if things change in that respect, or if I die in an accident (which I believe---unfortunately not joking---almost occurred on my trip to New York City while waiting for a subway car), I would want some say in how I am remembered. Maybe it's completely selfish. I mean, I know my mother is going to remember me for certain things she holds dear, and it ain't soccer! But I want to make a certain imprint on the world. I have always wanted so badly for people to know at least part of the real me, and I think a funeral is a good place to reveal that, at least in symbol.

To that end, here is a provisional (and perhaps hypothetical) set of instructions. I may revisit this from time to time:

Before or After the Funeral
1: Go through my "stuff". Donate everything possible, but discard the rest. I can't impose my own judgement on this, obviously. Just retain, for the time being, anything to be used for the funeral. All monetary assets shall be split as evenly as possible between the gymnastics program at the University of Pittsburgh, where I leave many fond memories and friendships, new and old, and the athletic program at Sacramento State, where I started to discover who I really was without fear of disapproval by my ever-loving parents.

2: Some folks have parties or get-togethers. My parents always seemed to like group outings of seven or eight close folks. I wouldn't impose a number, but there's something to be said for that sort of thing, I suppose. But not if you're forcing yourself. Death is a grievous thing, and forcing yourself to be happy at any particular moment is no good. Do as you wish in this regard. Just have it afterward!

Solid, bright orange, no decoration, try your hardest to make it cheap, even if its a makeshift urn. Not exactly sure why, really, although I do remember in my childhood liking the Dutch national soccer team. I guess I just like the color, and I guess that's a good enough reason.

Funeral attire:
Well, whatever. Can't really enforce this. I don't want people denied entry. But I do tend to like the formality of funerals. It just seems appropriate to dress up, but hopefully not in too much black. But we shall see, shan't we?

Music (edited to include links to the admittedly obscure artists):
I'd love the background to be a combination of Ray Lynch, John Jarvis (He's calling himself John Barlow Jarvis now?!), David Lanz and/or similar artists. Loop if necessary. At the end, with no explanation, play "Whole of the Moon" by the Waterboys.

I am an atheist, but primarily grew up in the Unitarian Universalist church. A venue consistent with either faith would be just fine. I broke away from the Unitarians for political differences, and for lack of need for a religious community. However, I still highly respect their ongoing attempt to affirm people's right to be.

For decor, at this point, I would prefer my Sacramento State posters (women's soccer, gymnastics and volleyball teams) hanging front and center, along with all of my Pitt gymnastics programs, if salvageable (please try to make them so). As well, if I have accrued a collection of soccer scarves, have them toward this middle focal point as well, one below the other, if possible. This all exemplifies who I was as I saw myself. Surrounding this can be anything. Anything that represents how you saw me, and anything that contributes to a normal, formal, funereal feel.

Comments: Time must be allowed for comments. If I'm wrong and my spirit does exist, and sees this, I do want to know how others saw me.

Anything else I've failed to mention with respect to my final wishes, I leave to you.

I feel really funny about doing this sort of exercise. I feel kind of demanding. But it's something that should be done by everybody. It's important that we get across what is important to our very being. It is important for others to get a chance to say what is on their mind as well.

I know I'm probably going to have to revisit this from time to time, but if I die tomorrow for any reason, any services that adhere to this post are A-OK with me. Thanks.


Blogger brent d. said...

I think for my funeral I want to have a barbecue. Mmmmmmmmmm barbecue. Nobody will be sad with that wonderful smell of ribs on the grill. Maybe I can incorporate it into a race. I can pick a funeral home 26.2 miles away from the cemetary and have everybody run. The winner can choose one thing from all of my junk that I have collected. I need to get on this! I have a lot of planning to do!

11/6/06 00:04  
Blogger Beast1624 said...

Thanks for the tip of the hat. I like your list...like you said, it sums up who we were. My main reason for doing this is I have been on the other side and had to make funeral arrangements for loved ones and wondered what they would have wanted because they never would write it down or talk about it. I just wanted to save my family from having to wonder.

12/6/06 17:13  
Blogger Rae said...

I like your list of "requirements", I think they speak to who you are.

I'm not sure what I want, but I do want to be cremated. I hope I can go peacefully, in my sleep or on a porch relaxing with Brent and Pippin. I would hate to die some tragic way.

And there's no way in hell I'm having a BBQ for Brent. That's so redneck.

12/6/06 23:13  
Blogger Cory said...

Man, as soon as I get back from St. Louis, I am gettin' my speakers set up! They don't work yet, so I can't hear Brent carrying on with...who was it, the realtor in that file? I reckon he does have a drawl. A heavy, twangy one. And his voice gets a bit high when his feathers are ruffled.

The marathon thing sounds interesting. Maybe not so realistic because of the lack of time to train, however maybe you can plan one at a family reunion. You ever have those? We're planning a huge one in Philadelphia in January 2007. Part of it is apparently intended as a rememberance of my grandmother on that side, who passed on in 12/05. Point is, you could have a belated rememberance run in your honor.

Beast, I'm sorry to hear that you had to be on the other side of the fence like that. As much as I reckon funerals must be hell to plan, they are, in some way, enjoyable. You get to sit and listen, and when it is your turn, to speak as well. Everybody hearing eachother clearly, and soaking in the deceased's essence.

I'm so freaking tired. I really need bed. Big day tomorrow.

14/6/06 23:44  

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