Monday, November 19, 2007

Circle of Life

In what appears to be a "growing trend," someone scattered human remains (read: ashes, not, you know, limbs and hair and teeth) on the Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disneyworld forcing workers to shut down the creaky rowboats while they made sure it was just deadpeople detritus and not anthrax. And apparently they're not overly happy that it might be harmless ashes, because those gum up the works, and really throw the audio off in the "Yo Ho Yo Ho, A Pirate's Life for Me" portion of the trip. More so than the millions of plastic souvenir cups and mouse-ear beanies and cameras I'm sure they scoop out on a daily basis. Not to mention it puts a bit of a damper on the "Happiest Place on Earth!" slogan to know that funeral rituals are going on in the gondola next to yours.

George Smith! The doctors were unable to revive you after your coronary, and your family just took you off life support! What are you going to do now?

I'm going to Disneyworld!!!

But let's cut to the chase: who in their will has their dying sentiments expressed as "please cremate my remains, catch the next AirTran flight to Orlando, and sprinkle me throughout what used to be a somewhat scary but is now an excessively overmarketed Disney (tm) ride in a crowded park full of tourists and sugar-hyped children. To remember the occasion, I ask only that you purchase a plastic skull beer can holder with lighted eyes (batteries not included) at the gift shop on the way out"? I've heard of sprinkling ashes at the Grand Canyon, Yankee Stadium, the ocean, outer space, sunset views, and in the forest, but Disneyworld?

I shouldn't judge. This might have been someone's magic kingdom. Maybe there was a marriage proposal in the dark rowboat while faux bombs were dropping perilously close in the water. Or, perish the thought, maybe this was a child's dream to remain forever with the characters from his/her favorite movie. Now that I think of it, Maddy will never get to experience Disneyworld, or anything Disneyovermarketed (tm) -- maybe she'd appreciate spinning on the teacups for eternity?

As the writers are on strike, and with all due apologies to the picketing Letterman staff, I thought the grief community should pick up the slack and create a Top 10 Locations for Scattering Remains. I have started us off, please submit your ideas in the comments.

10. The Oval Office. Forgetting the logistics of getting your ashes in there, here is a permanent place of power to remain with in perpetuity! Think of the intellect! The intrigue! The scandal! The [expletive deleted]! The endless discussions about which tie to wear when meeting the prime minister of Fill-in-the-blank-istahn! The boring suited guys walking around talking into their wrists! The goddamn boring paperwork and endless requests for signatures! The schmoozing and the asskissing and the . . . Ok, maybe this isn't such a hot idea. Next.

9. Le Bec Fin. Because otherwise how will you get a table?

8. Target. Instead of Disney, which let's face it is a bit space restrictive in terms of how much new marketing they can cram in there, go to mecca! Have your survivors sprinkle you around the store -- a bit in video, a bit in audio, a bit in electronics, a bit in toys, a wee sprinkle in housewares and clothing -- and keep up with pop culture and trends (not to mention the latest in leaded toys and world trade politics) FOR.E.VER. And I know you love it.

7. Starbucks. Because nothing says "heaven" like Grande non-fat no-sugar caramel latte.

6. Recycling Center. Go Green! Dump ashes in the plastic bottle bin and the adventuresome soul can indeed be reincarnated for another life! As a countertop! Shoes! Another plastic bottle! Or pour ashes into compost pile and return soul to the earth FOR REAL while ashes help propagate roses, azalea and a myriad of vegetables! (warning: for the faint of heart, this may border on cannibalism. Check with your local spiritual guidelines.)

5. "Over my dead body." Stick to principal. Jewelry not getting passed to someone? Bank account not going to that wretched family member? Stupd-ex-whoever showing up in your house? Insolent child eating ice cream BEOFRE dinner? Daughter wearing scandalously low-rise jeans out of the house? Scatter your remains at the place of your worry be it the jewelry box, bank lobby, front door threshold, freezer. Have family members confront the guilt literally, and we'll all keep our fingers crossed while you wait it out for an eternity. At least you'll have something to keep you occupied.

4. Your turn . . .


Catherine said...

I've always had a morbid fascination with the place where they turn your remains into a diamond. I could wear my sparkly dead loved ones around my neck on a chain!

Beruriah said...

Oh you are too clever for me.

Sand Art maybe? Incorporate your loved one in an art project for the ages.

Searching said...

Flushing fishies down the toilet
always works...

Pretty gross story. Can you imagine if you got some in your eye? Dead person ashes scratching your corneas? Nasty!

charmedgirl said...

oh my god this is hilarious!!!!

i say pour them into the sewer grate for know, to force them down the throat of every nosey neighbor for every stupid comment...

hey! catherine- i couldn't believe when i saw how expensive those death diamonds were!!! i mean, is it really that costly to throw some ash into a CZ??

Julia said...

I am sticking with Starbucks.

kate said...

Actually, beruriah, you can in fact turn your loved one into a coral reef.

Eternal reefs

ms. G said...

Coming over from Niobe's blog....this was too funny! Well, I can't think of any on my own, but I once saw a show where the best friend of the deceased when getting a memorial tattoo, convinced the artist to sprinkle some ashes in the ink.

I've never heard of the diamonds....