The Death Panel

August 16, 2009 § Leave a comment

jwdiehlHawaiiHawaiian Cemetery, J.W. Diehl

Sit down, dear lady, sit down.

You have trouble sitting? How old are you?

That is very, very old.

You’re older than Nancy Pelosi! Doesn’t that make you feel old? Do you have many cats? A car that makes funny noises, but only you hear them? Do your grandchildren walk right through you at family functions, tangling up  your nerves like wet spaghetti?

I see. You’ve never had children, and you’re retired, no pets. You don’t drive. You wouldn’t need much in the grave now, would you? We can spare a blanket. They have pills so that you won’t notice when the dirt is piled on top. Only two, though, we need to save some for the other septuagenarians. 70 is the new 99! Yes, we can!

You don’t have to worry about your mortgage anymore, or all those jury duty notices you stuck in the kitchen drawer. The plots are free. Isn’t it something that a sprained ankle can get you so much? Used to be an ace bandage, five minutes with the doctor: now you get personal, red-carpet service and a gently used pine coffin! Complete with the latest issue of The New York Times! Some call us socialists, but we like to think we’re being neighborly. Soon you’ll have Internet access and cable.

You’d prefer to not to be connected after death? You don’t want to hear Keith and Rachel, dear little Anderson? You don’t want to tweet all your demented, frail, wobbly, healthcare-gobbling sexagenarian friends?

America needs more like you. Michelle and I are going to pray you get on the waiting list for Heaven. Every year, they take a few who haven’t been to Harvard, according to Rahm. No, I don’t know what happens to Jews after death. Nobody does, not even Jews. That’s why they’re so active all the time.

And yes—since you ask—it’s true Rahm said Satan has a Sarah Palin pinup calendar. But don’t make too much out of that. I think they’re actually going to put her in Limbo with all the unbaptized babies. Just for laughs, you know. God has a wicked sense of humor. Rahm told me—well, never mind. Goodnight, dear lady, goodnight, goodnight.

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