I Love Going to Funerals

by Mark C. Wallfisch

“But I love going to funerals,” I told my husband.

“I know, and I’ve never understood why.”

“It’s simple.  Woody Allen supposedly said something like 90% of life is just showing up.  But the way I see it, for funerals, just showing up is 100%.  You don’t have to say anything deep, or, really, say anything at all.  Nodding, smiling, or touching a hand is all you need to do, and just if you want to.  You only have to show up to make the friends and relatives feel appreciated, cared for in a difficult time, and all you have to do is dress up just a little and sit through some inflated hogwash about the departed.”

“That’s it?  You’re on a mission to make people feel good?”

“Not a bad mission, is it? I might even see some friends of mine and get something good to eat.  It’s not a bad deal — very little effort in exchange for making others feel loved.  I’d go to more if I knew more people.”

“But you barely know these people.  He was my co-worker, not yours.”

“That’s just the point.  If he had been my co-worker, I’d be expected to go; attendance would be a minimum requirement.  I’d be a jerk if I didn’t go for my own co-worker; I’d have to go.  But this time your co-worker died, so I get to show some love voluntarily.  It’s a no-brainer.”

“OK.  You can go with me.  But remember that funeral last year?  Don’t bring up Chuckles the Clown’s funeral on the Mary Tyler Moore Show like you did then.”

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