MY WIFE’S FUNERAL
★★★★★ (5 out of 5)
Hello, and welcome to my week-by-week review of everything in the world. Today I am reviewing my wife’s funeral.
When my Rosie passed away so many years ago, it was all I could do to get off the couch in the morning. Planning her funeral seemed almost impossible and that’s probably why I did such a poor job at it.
I had wanted to give her eulogy using puppets (Rosie loved puppets), but in my emotional stupor I left the puppets on the roof of my car and they must have fallen off in the road somewhere. When I arrived at the funeral I had to make puppets right there on the spot. Unfortunately I had also forgotten to wear socks, so I had to make the puppets out of some Ziploc bags I found in my glove compartment. It was kind of gross because it made my fingers look like puppet organs, but it got the job done.
The eulogy should have been shorter but there was so much to say about Rosie. Crouching behind the coffin was hard to do for more than half an hour because of my knees, so I had to do the last 45 minutes standing up which kind of ruined the illusion of the puppets. And then my hands were so sweaty that the Ziploc bags kept slipping off. The one bag that had originally been used for a peanut butter sandwich was snatched away by a stray dog.
Rosie had requested an open casket, and even though it pained me to have to look at her, I obliged. What I wish I had not done was agree to her wish that she be dressed in a cat suit and Native American headdress because actually she hadn’t requested that at all. I had misread her handwriting and later discovered she had asked for “that sweet red dress.”
Fortunately there was no one there to see any of this. I was the only person to show up to her funeral. That’s why the part where everyone gets in line to walk up to the coffin and say goodbye was just me getting in line over and over, saying different things in different voices and hoping Rosie wouldn’t notice if she happened to be listening.
It was when I was saying goodbye in the voice of Rosie’s hairdresser that I realized why no one had shown up: I had forgotten to tell anyone about the funeral. That was easily my biggest mistake in planning it.
I frantically ran across the street to a payphone and began calling everyone who knew Rosie. It was hard to explain what I’d done while sobbing uncontrollably, but everyone I talked to called everyone they knew and within minutes cars started pulling in. There were too many for the parking lot. Relatives, friends, and friends of friends showed up. Even Rosie’s enemy Rosemary (who Rosie always regarded as a friend she hadn’t won over yet) came and told me she wished she’d gotten to know Rosie better.
That’s when my tears changed from tears of sadness to tears of happiness, mixed with tears of allergicness because I was sitting under a eucalyptus tree. Overall it was probably the greatest funeral ever.
Please join me next week when I’ll be reviewing Les Nessman.