In Most Cases, It Really Was Fun


I’ve decided what I want on my gravestone. Which is nice, because that completes my funeral planning. I have an outfit picked out, a playlist put together, and an Evite guest list on hold. Now that the gravestone is set, I can sit back and concentrate on living.

When the kids were little - actually when the kids were big, too . . . well, always, after we’re done doing something and we get in the car and are headed home, I always say, “Well, that was fun!” I think it’s only appropriate that I have

Well, That Was Fun!

on my gravestone but only if a) the engraver can do italic, because without emphasis on the That, it’s not what I say, and b) if we’re still doing gravestones by the time I die. I’m thinking it’s likely that we’re all buried at sea or catapulted into space or turned into fossil fuels to power our grandchildren’s flying cars by the time I’m 110. And I am planning to live that long.

The whole gravestone thing got started at my book club last week.  Sharon’s father, who, as a Merchant Marine in World War II, was torpedoed and lived for three days clinging to a palette of bananas in the ocean, had this engraved on his gravestone: “Bananas Float.”

“I can show you the picture,” Sharon said when I expressed doubt that someone would put something so whimsical, so non-deathly, so ha-ha funny on his final resting place. I have so much respect for Sharon’s father. Sure, for surviving several torpedoes, but mostly for putting something fun on his grave.

I have equal respect for Sharon’s mom, who obviously respected his wishes and put the order through for the floating banana grave. His plot is probably the least depressing thing in the whole cemetery.

I want to be that. I want my grave to be the one that people wander over to and smile. I’m not sure my husband will be as accommodating as Sharon’s mom.

My husband rolls his eyes when I tell him I’ve picked out a nice selection of Tony Bennett songs for my funeral and that I’d like to be squeezed into my black angora dress that I bought on my honeymoon in New York in 1983. (I’m not worried about fitting into it - they can just do some crude lipo or just fold me up in there how ever they can. Hack away, Stewart-Kyle boys. Do what you must, but make me look good in that dress. I want to look like the lady who regularly got to say, “Well, that was fun!”

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