Saturday, November 27, 2010

Pre-natal and Post-death

I've been giving some thought to the funeral business in the last few months, as I've been reading about it in The Black Obelisk (the library is sending me e-mails to ask for it back), and stories all around speak of the production of caskets, the families who spend generations repeating the cycle of profiting from the ceremonial mourning process, and the ubiquitous nature of the lucrative aspect of deaths in society. Much is spent on the beginning of life, with perhaps seven months of hospital visits, possibly an expensive surgery, and mountains of baby gear. By my precise calculation, the expenditure of funds averages to be equal in comparison.
Nowadays, I think the trend of newspapers is to charge people for the publication of an obituary, whereas baby announcements are published for free, at least in my little corner here. You pay now for an obituary because they let you write it any way you want to. You can get a free one with the facts as basic as a birth announcement.
If a birth announcement were written as an obituary, it might be something like this ...
Alma Grace Potter, age .0000000000001, became alive on Saturday, November 27, 2010, in New Hampshire County Hospital in Youth, New York. She had been in her usual health and birth was sudden and expected.
Preceding her in birth were her parents, Horace Greenlief Potter and Linda Potter. Also preceding her in birth were her grandparents, Will and Mazie Potter and Flint and Ivy Worth; a sister, Alice Z. Potter, and a brother, Dewey S. Potter; two aunts, Mega Potter and Dreama Potter Weaver and husband Guy, an uncle, Simonton Potter, and five cousins and several step-cousins. An uncle, Rob Potter, preceded her life by dying before she was born.
She was active in the womb, and participated from the inside by listening to college lectures and children's stories, taking trips to Target, and going with her parents to prenatal yoga classes. She will most likely enjoy hobbies such as knitting, texting, cross-country skiing and gardening, and she is a Buddhist by faith. She is also an avid stretcher.
Friends will be received in New Hampshire County Hospital from November 27 to November 29, and at home for the next three weeks. Gifts can be purchased in reference to the Target baby register at the front desk.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


It's been gray and rainy the last four days, and I haven't been able to walk. Work has been sluggish and yesterday pushed me to my limits. I made something with apples that have been in the refrigerator about a month and a half, and some of the apples taste OK and some of them taste a little funny.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

An All-Good Saturday

Saturday I left the home for an adventure, involving following an unfamiliar route to Pittsburgh on the east side, going to Monroeville. Later I went to Squirrel Hill, which is a lovely and interesting little section of Pittsburgh. I saw some British-reminiscent architecture, an endless variety of merchandise from all over the world, beautiful churches/mosques, and an intense golden light of the November sun illuminating the landscape to make it golden and spectacular, with what color there is left of the late, late fall. I went the wrong way twice, on the turnpike, but turned around and it was OK; and started the trip by getting stuck in traffic because of a three-car wreck about a mile from home. The wreck occurred in the middle of a dangerous intersection, and about a year or two ago a traffic light was installed after a series of accidents there. I remember hearing a policeman I know saying that traffic lights never make intersections safer. A young one in the house typed up an itinerary for us, and mapped out the drive and scheduled our departure time from home. We were 10 minutes late leaving, and I believe we would have ended up much closer to the accident had we left when we were scheduled to.

Thursday, November 11, 2010


I watched a documentary last night called "Babies," which followed the lives of four babies in four vastly separated parts of the world: Japan, Africa (I didn't catch which country), United States, and Mongolia. Worth watching, but I fell asleep. There was no determinable dialogue, as it was all about conveying images and mood.

Friday, November 5, 2010


Yesterday was a day of travel. It was work-related, and I thought it would help me in a non-work way to get a change of scenery. It was rainy, dark, and dismal. It helped a little.
I found a Kermit-the-Frog classic tan trench coat at Target on sale, which I purchased for those Muppet-feeling days. Halloween candy and costumes are also on sale. Thursday nights are the best shopping days. Merchandise is marked down for the weekend shoppers and you can buy it before the weekend shoppers have purchased them.